Can someone explain to me why the lower radical 是 is considered to be the ‘correct’ radical whereas the lower radical of 定, which looks exactly the same, is ‘coat rack’? This makes it a bit confusing for me.
There’s probably no good explanation for this. I’m guessing the author of the mnemonic found it easier to create a mnemonic with the correct radical. The lower radical in 是 is a mix between 疋 and 正, so IMO either could’ve been used and that’s probably why they switch between them depending on the situation.
I know this is confusing but if it’s too much of a problem then you should try creating your own mnemonic, that might work better for you.
Sometimes the elements in a kanji don’t exactly look like the radical shapes that were taught, just due to how they get implemented in the kanji. In this case, that element is one change from becoming either of those radicals.
But let’s all remember that they’re overhauling the radicals (someday) and so this could all be moot.
Another problem I found. 祭 is made of the Jackhammer & Tent radical. 察 looks like the 祭 kanji with an helmet, however, its radicals are not only Jackhammer, Tent and Helmet, but also Slide. Where did this slide come from?
But it can’t hurt to email them to at least make sure they are aware of this discrepancy.
It looks like they changed the radial for 定 to correct (which I just encountered in the Level 9 lessons and showed up to ask about because it seemed strange). It’s now consistent with 是. That’s good as long as they’re being consistent about it (though I would have naively described the thing under the roof as a coat rack, so I have a slight quibble with their choice of which one they changed.)
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