Let's decipher stylized kanji!

No, I really had no idea on the second one - I didn’t think it even existed…

My turn to take a crack at it. And yes, @Belthazar, I’m fairly certain that these drawings are all in Chinese. Your hunch is right. I’ll also translate them:

  1. 香醉 – sweetly intoxicated (fragrance + drunkenness)
  2. 浮雲 – floating cloud
  3. 中秋 – mid-autumn (there’s a Mid-Autumn Festival among traditional Chinese festivals)
  4. 冬至 – winter solstice
  5. 夏至 – summer solstice
    (至 usually is a formal version of 到, which means ‘to arrive’, but it apparently also means ‘the ultimate/peak’, hence the usage here.)
  6. 干的好 – well done (traditional grammar dictates that it should be written as 干得好, but in China today, 的 – the most common grammatical particle that’s read ‘de’ – is allowed to take on the roles of all three ‘de’ particles: 的 (possessive), 地 (prepositive adverbial – allows a description to appear before a verb), 得 (postpositive adverbial – allows a description to appear after a verb)

(PS: I’m making all these grammatical terms up as I go along, hoping that they are good descriptions, because I don’t know what the real formal names are. Even in Chinese, I’ve never had to learn them.)

There’s actually a mix of simplified and traditional characters, which isn’t all that rare in Chinese calligraphy. 雲 is written as 云 in simplified Chinese, whereas 干 is the simplified form of 幹, which is found in traditional Chinese. (It was probably used because the calligrapher wasn’t sure which traditional form to use, or because the traditional forms are just too rare in mainland China.)


Blah, I was leaning towards 醉, but I felt a bit like it had too few strokes for 酉

Hahaha. You might want to take a look at calligraphic abbreviations for the 酉 radical. :wink: It’s not that rare for the central strokes to get squished into a few artful horizontal squiggles. The other clue that points to its not being 目 is the top stroke being disconnected: it has to be written as part of a 𠃌 (though possibly without the ‘hook’ at the bottom). I learnt 行書 (or 行书 in Chinese) so my handwriting would look better when I wrote quickly in Chinese, so I’m somewhat familiar with them. I’m pretty clueless about 草書 though. That might as well be another language, because the abbreviations are based on seal script or something like that.


That lovely! They really are gorgeous and, now, I finally understand what they say! ^>^ Many thanks! :bowing_woman:


Most of them don’t, in my experience!

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That’s a relief in a way! :sweat_smile: