A question about 海 and texts

Hi, everyone! I have quite a strange question.
I was trying to read easy news, when I’ve encountered 海 kanji. Laughed a little, because “man, it looks almost the same as sea kanji, but we have ‘母’ instead of ‘window’”.

Then I check translation and it is kanji for “sea”.
Can someone help me understand why the kanji was so tranformed? And maybe there are more kanji that look a little different in text than in dictionaries?
I tried to google it, but haven’t found anything.

Thank you in advance!




Thanks fo the link, I’ll read more about han simplification. But it is still not enough. Does it means all window radicals are interchangeable with “mother”? Do we have more simplified stuff?
This question is quite painful, because I usually use printed materials from web and regular dictionaries, so I cannot just copy-paste the kanji to check if it is a simplified one.


„Traditional“ and „Simplified“ refer to the Chinese characters. Only the „Japanese“ version is the correct Japanese character. If you see a Chinese character in a Japanese text in your browser, that’s usually an issue with language settings. Try to disable Chinese in your browser or move Japanese higher up in the priority list. That should fix it.


Knowing what the traditional forms of characters look like is mostly a point of trivia, and not necessary for reading or writing ability in modern Japanese.

Some of them do appear on signs and other places, when someone wants to make things look or feel older.

Like you might see 國 instead of 国 if someone is going for that.

But often even natives don’t know what the traditional versions look like. Obviously with 海 it’s pretty close, but many times it’s not similar at all.


As Nicole 先輩 said it is probably your browser using the Chinese fonts, in my browser, this displays as the usual Japanese character and not as the “mother”. Funny, even if I copy the character from Wikipedia, in my browser, it still displays as the Japanese character. I guess because I have lots of Japanese fonts and no Chinese ones.


Yes, I added japanese as a browser language and it worked just fine. :crabigator:
Thanks a million!