Why the 'Village' radical is not 'Hometown' instead?

Hi everyone! This is my first post, and is of course, to rant about something. I love Wanikani, and love learning using radicals. BUT, I cannot fathom why the village ‘radical’ is named like that when it could perfectly be named like its corresponding equal kanji. It creates a lot of confusion.

Done. I feel so much better now.


Honestly, I don’t know either lol. I’ve looked into another kanji corresponding to this radical and I think the mnemonic would still be more or less the same if they change from village to hometown.

Probably it something they changed overtime. I heard that mnemonic and radical have been changed a lot in Wanikani since when it started.

Just add a synonym then it will solve your problem perfectly and doesn’t compromise your study experience.


This is just a guess, but I think it does have something to do with the mnemonics. At least in my mind, having just a “village” to create stories in your mind with is more flexible than simply my hometown. It probably made the mnemonics easier to write for the Tofugu team, and it makes it easier for me to make a distinct story in my head.


All I know is I just did that lesson today and got really excited to be learning the word “villager” because I’m expecting it to show up in Animal Crossing. >:3c Changed the mnemonic in my head to just be about me deforesting my island to make way for my babies Ribbot and Bella.

Edit: AH investigated a little bit and realized I’m talking about the kanji not the radical. You’re right that makes no sense! :joy:


This has been a major source of frustration and missed reviews for me. This is not the only radical that is different from the kanji it represents.

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“Eh? Isn’t the Kanji meaning also village??”
I was really confused and looked it up… Nope, I just added it as a Synonym apparently :joy:
Jisho lists village as a meaning, so if it bothers you that much, I would add it as a Synonym. Not sure if you would want to change the meaning for the radical though, since that comes up in mnemonics later.

Also, it seems like “village” for the Kanji is on the allowlist anyway? :face_with_monocle: So no need to add it yourself.

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Are you talking about 里? I think village is a perfectly fine meaning for the kanji. In fact, village is the first meaning on kanjipedia


It’s actually already included as a secondary meaning of the kanji on WK.


If I understood it correctly, the main reason is probably to differentiate 里 and 村 where 村 means any village and 里 is more specific to the village you and your parents come from (ie. your hometown)

So it would make sense to allow village as translation for 里 even if it’s not the “main” one.

But that’s just my deduction so far, so I might be totally wrong :roll_eyes:

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I guess it makes sense as later you learn

里心 さとごころ homesick

村人 むらびと villager

And they want to differentiate them, just guessing.

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