The English Wikipedia page for Kyūjitai kanji begins with the following line:

Kyūjitai (舊字體/旧字体, literally "old character forms") are the traditional forms of kanji, Chinese written characters used in Japanese. Their simplified counterparts are shinjitai (新字体), "new character forms".

However, comparing some Jōyō kanji to Hyōgai kanji, some characters with the same component are written slightly differently, where the Hyōgai kanji will match the standard Korean form (and the Kangxi dictionary form). An example for some characters from the phonetic series 「翟」 is given below:

Jōyō kanji: 曜 濯 躍

Hyōgai kanji: 翟 戳 趯

Notice that for Jōyō kanji, 「翟」 looks like ⿱⿰ヨヨ隹, rather than how it is normally displayed as a standalone character. Some other examples include characters with the components 「兌」/「兑」, 「{{ko:包}}」/「包」, etc.

On the Japanese Wiktionary page, 「{{ko:曜}}」 is listed as the Kyūjitai form of 「曜」, but on the 常用漢字表, 曜 is not considered to be simplified from anything (i.e. there is no character in brackets listed next to 「曜」. This can also seen in the list of Shinjitai kanji with their Kyūjitai counterparts in the Wikipedia page for Kyūjitai kanji). Are changes like these considered to be a Kyūjitai/Shinjitai difference, or are they classified as something else?

  • It looks to me as if Japanese-standard fonts have no real ability to display 「{{ko:曜}}」 and 「{{ko:包}}」 - there is no compatibility ideograph available to resort to, and they have to fall back to a locale selector. Maybe this is why they're not listed as Kyūjitai?
    – dROOOze
    Jan 28, 2020 at 5:57
  • 1
    A good font can. The other version of 曜 is sequence U+66DC,U+E0101, while the closed form of 包 is sequence U+5305,U+E0101, and they should both be supported by any font having Adobe-Japan1-4 ("Pro" fonts). Feb 6, 2020 at 13:29

1 Answer 1


The official answer is: the 旧字体 kanji are those that were officially matched to the corresponding simplified forms.

  1. The official List of Jōyō Kanji by Japanese Agency for Cultural Affairs has them in parentheses after the main entries.
  2. The official List of Jinmeiyō Kanji by Japanese Ministry of Justice contains two kinds of 旧字体: in the list itself (these are shown as pairs of kanji connected with a vertical line, old form below), as well as the 旧字体 forms for the Jōyō kanji, given separately on pages 4-5 with the simplified correspondences in parentheses (of course, these are the same as in the previous list).

Still, there are some more matches, defined in various standards. I believe, there are 184 more pairs. You can investigate on your own: download the mightly map of correspondences established by the industrial standard Adobe-Japan1 at https://raw.githubusercontent.com/adobe-type-tools/Adobe-Japan1/master/aj17-kanji.txt . The "Official Traditional Forms (CID of standard form given)" column will give you the pairings required.

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