Incorrect meanings?

So I just started using this program, but I’m finding a lot of possible errors?

⼃ is said to mean slide, but I can’t find any resource that says this means slide. Why does WaniKani say this is slide?
⼀ is listed as ground, but ground is 接地, is it not? Calling this radical ground doesn’t make sense to me. Can anyone explain?
⼂ is called drop on here, but isn’t this dot? Why does WaniKani call it drop?

While there are a lot of correct radicals, it seems like some of these have been given arbitrary english names that don’t carry the Japanese meaning at all. Am I wrong?

1 Like

The radical names aren’t the official ones, no. Some of the radicals WK teaches aren’t even official radicals, actually. The weird names are to help you with the mnemonics that WK uses later. This is for two reasons: a), most Japanese people don’t know the official names, so they’re clearly not that helpful, and b), the weirder something is, the better it will stick in your mind.



Haha, “ground” as in electrical grounding? I learned a new word, thanks.

As was already said, the purpose of the radicals here is not to teach you the 214 Kangxi radicals that Japanese people use for dictionaries, it is to create memorable stories to remember the kanji shapes. To that end, they chose names that work well for their stories.

There’s nothing wrong with learning the Kangxi radicals if you want. They just would be kind of bland in mnemonics, and also don’t cover all the possible shapes in kanji anyway, due to them having a different purpose.


Yes. This is a “you know too much” situation - you’re assumed to be approaching this from zero previous knowledge. Don’t worry about them being “wrong”, they’re temporary tools for learning the kanji that will drop out of your memory as you start to recognize the kanji by sight.

In the meantime, try to forget or at least suspend what you already know; its just going to make you answer “wrong” sometimes on the reviews. If that’s a big problem, you can add the name you know as a synonym. But as @Haiena said, the mnemonic stories are made from the custom names, so using your own might interfere with that.


Thank you, this was very helpful. I must have missed this in the introduction. I’m still new to the concept of Japanese radicals and had thought they each held individual meaning.

Thank you, this is helpful. :smile:

Oops. My mistake.


For interest, here is a list I made comparing WaniKani’s radicals with the official meaning.


This topic was automatically closed 365 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.