The origin of Chinese characters

We chose traditional Chinese characters because they were invited by Han which is ancient of China, also they have been gone through development and improvement for a long time. Currently, they can be tracked to Oracle bone script in Shang dynasty in B.C. 1300.

Chinese characters are the basic concept of traditional six-fold classification (liùshū 六书 / 六書 "six writings"). This was the first described in The Rites of Zhou (Chinese: 周禮; pinyin: Zhōu lǐ)*, but there was no specific explanation.Till Eastern Han dynasty, the scholar Xu Shen made the clear and detailed explanations for structured six-fold classification (liùshū 六书 / 六書 "six writings). Six writings are included in Pictograms, Simple ideograms, Compound ideograms, Phono-semantic compounds, Rebus and Transformed cognates.


Based on appearance of objects to create characters. For example: 日 rì for "sun", 月 yuè for "moon", and 木 mù for "tree" or "wood".

Simple ideograms

The way how to represent abstractive things.

Compound ideograms

Combine two different word roots, so that you can bring out new meanings.

Phono-semantic compounds

The sound of one Chinese character can be represented different meanings.


Also called borrowings or phonetic loan characters. When you can’t describe something, you can borrow the related word roots or similar sounds for expressing this.

Transformed cognates

Those two Chinese characters can be substitute, explained for each other as well. Basically, they are two different characters, but the same or similar meanings.

The Rites of Zhou (Chinese: 周禮; pinyin: Zhōu lǐ)

originally known as "Officers of Zhou" (周官; Zhouguan) is actually a work on bureaucracy and organizational theory. (From Wikipedia)