How do you know the radicals?

Oh. Can you give some useful example? Never heard about this and sounds really good.

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All have the reading of そ

If you see that element on the right hand side, you should guess そ


Are you asking if there are distinct kanji that share all of their parts? In fact, not all are unique. For example, you can arrange the kanji parts 口 and 貝 in two different ways to get two different kanji: 唄 and 員.

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And they don’t really distinguish between the positions in the mnemonics

A clam with a mouth is a member of the invertebrate family. Yes, clams do have mouths. They are also proud members of the invertebrate family and are probably the most nationalistic of all invertebrates.

Use your mouth to sing and a clam shell to stroke your shamisen, and you’ll be performing a shamisen song just like that! Yes, it’s that easy. Just go find a clam shell, open your mouth, and you’ll be singing one too in no time!

But the latter one is a level 60 kanji… so if you need the mnemonic to remember 員 at that point, you’re probably in trouble anyway.

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First of all it only works with onyomi. This has to do with Chinese/Japanese history which I’m not going to go into. Anyway…

You should know 工 (construction) which can be read as こう
功 (achievement)
攻 (aggression)

have 工 as a radical and both also share the こう onyomi reading. Check the radical page for 工 and you’ll see the majority of the kanji have こう as an onyomi reading. Of course, this doesn’t help you with kunyomi, and there are also exceptions you have to watch out for like 式

It’s not something you can rely on, but it’s a neat trick that can help you learn kanji faster, recall the readings more easily, and help you to make an educated guess if you encounter unfamiliar kanji out in the wild.

Here are a few more examples.

Both share the reading どう

Both share the reading せい

Both share the reading しん

You also have to be careful, since these “phonetic radicals” are based off the actual components of the kanji, not the arbitrary radicals wanikani uses. So just because wanikani says some kanji has some radical, that doesn’t mean anything in terms of readings. You have to use your own perception to notice the patterns. Look up “phonetic radicals” or “phonetic components” for more info.


Thank you so much. It’s so super interesting! I have things to research further now! :slight_smile:

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