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I've recently gotten into translating fancomics for a manga, although I'm still a beginner at Japanese. Naturally, I don't really know my kanji and I have to rely on a lot of looking up radical and kanji lists or using OCR (the few times it works). In one of those fancomics, I've encountered a kanji that I've been unable to recognise successfully for a few days now. Here's a pic of the kanji in question.

enter image description here

If I'm not mistaken the top-left radical is 广 and I tried to search based on that (as well as other similar radicals in case I am mistaken). I also tried to look based on the furigana at the left (or at least I think it's furigana) that based on other instances of the artist's handwriting, I took to be に. However, with either of those methods I couldn't find any kanji that seemed to fit the image well enough nor any that seemed to make any sense meaning-wise (though I will admit I could have been missing something as my Japanese is beginner level, after all). For the context of where the kanji appeared, I have this:

告白する相手を間違えてませんか ("Haven't you made a mistake about whom to confess to?" as per my translation) (?)では ないですね The two latter lines are different speech bubbles, but I suspect they might be a single sentence.

If someone can recognise the kanji, I'd grateful for the help, but I'd also appreciate tips on how I might go about this kind of research more efficiently myself. After all, it's very possible I'll come up this problem again in the future and I can't always rely on others.

In any case, thanks in advance for any help.

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    It's 嘘, though I think this kind of question is considered off topic.
    – Leebo
    Commented Aug 2, 2019 at 12:37
  • @Leebo I don't see anything off-topic about this, it shows very clear research effort and an earnest willingness to learn more.
    – dROOOze
    Commented Aug 2, 2019 at 12:39
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    @droooze I wasn't suggesting it wasn't written earnestly, but "methods for how to recognize characters" is generally considered a meta topic at least, isn't it.
    – Leebo
    Commented Aug 2, 2019 at 12:41
  • I have a feeling someone will mention a handwriting app. I must say, if one isn't familiar with the character components, a handwriting app won't really help pick the right character - it'll just bring up a list of choices which narrows down the guesswork.
    – dROOOze
    Commented Aug 2, 2019 at 12:45
  • @Leebo Thanks you very much for your help and for the quick reply. I looked up a few similar questions before making mine and I noticed that the ones marked as off-topic had the following reason given: "Questions asking for translations, transcriptions or proofreading are off-topic unless prior research effort is clearly indicated". I figured that as such mine wouldn't be off-topic, but hey I'm new here, could be wrong. Commented Aug 2, 2019 at 13:03

1 Answer 1

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The character is「嘘」.

Assuming that you've identified the furigana correctly, I can't think of a word where「嘘」has a reading「に」. However, I also think that furigana are usually written on the right, not on the left as specified in the question.


I guess this is a question of character decomposition:

  • 「嘘{きょ・こ}」is made from

    • Semantic「口」(mouth, referring to some action by the mouth)

    • Phonetic「虚{きょ・こ}」(referring to the on'yomi), which is made from

      • Phonetic「虍{こ}」 (not「广」). As reinforcement,「虍{こ}」is also the phonetic of 「虎{こ}」.
      • Semantic「丘」(large hill mound), now appearing as「业」inside the character「虚」in Japanese Shinjitai.「虚」originally meant large mound, but this is not relevant to the modern meaning.
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  • FYI: Character components should generally not be called radicals. Radicals are dictionary section headers, and don't specify what characters are actually composed from.
    – dROOOze
    Commented Aug 2, 2019 at 13:09
  • Ah yes thanks. I think I mistook the mouth component as the furigana (well I wasn't entirely certain one way or another, it was just a hypothesis). And thanks for the note on the radicals. Will keep that in mind. Commented Aug 2, 2019 at 13:12
  • @FigrothFelanor oh, right, now that I look at it I can see why you saw that as「に」.
    – dROOOze
    Commented Aug 2, 2019 at 13:16

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