These have the same reading as ひろげる, but a different kanji. Is there any variation in connotation between these, or is it just variant spelling? Is 広げる then, as I believe it is, the more commonly used of the two?

  • One very clearly has te-hen or the hand radical on the left, so consider that that is also going to influence how a native interprets the character.
    – sova
    Jun 6, 2015 at 0:25

1 Answer 1


Although Shinmeikai and Daijiten have these as being exactly the same, Meikyō provides a narrow band of usage for 拡げる. [This answer was rewritten to reflect this.] 拡げる is used for "broaden" or "enlarge," but not for "unfurl". 広げる can be used for all three.

There is another kanji associated with ひろげる, 展げる, which is used only in the sense of "unfurl". It's comparatively rare.

  • 1
    "Anyone who writes 拡げる is a greater stickler for detail than Sima Qian" There are many people who do use 拡げる. For example, BCCWJ has 広げ 4301 拡げ 339 ひろげ 718 展げ 11, so 7.3% of the kanji choice for ひろげ(る) falls on 拡. I don't think all these people do this out of attention to detail.
    – Earthliŋ
    Jun 5, 2015 at 15:02
  • You're right, my comment was totally flippant and I have seen that usage before.
    – Avery
    Jun 5, 2015 at 15:25
  • 3
    We've been discussing this in chat: chat.stackexchange.com/transcript/message/22031639#22031639
    – user1478
    Jun 5, 2015 at 17:00

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