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What is the significance of a repeated radical in a Kanji character?

In general, don't overinterpret repeated components. It's inconsistent and largely a hit-and-miss exercise. Sometimes they just mean "lots of" the single repeated component, or some extended meaning ...
dROOOze's user avatar
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19 votes
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What is the story behind "peach kanji" 桃?

In many kanji, some of the components do not provide meaning, but only sound.「桃」(On'yomi: とう) is made up of semantic「木」(tree) and phonetic「兆」(On'yomi: ちょう). Remember: Kanji were created for Chinese ...
dROOOze's user avatar
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15 votes
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How often do single dots stick to the top of kanji?

Japanese elementary school children are generally taught to write kanji like this (教科書体): I don't know how these are different from how Chinese kids are taught to write these characters. However, ...
naruto's user avatar
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15 votes

Is there a list of components all the kanjis are made of?

Unfortunately, this is a bit of a complicated situation, as there are a few closely related ideas: Any piece of a kanji you might recognize as appearing in multiple kanji. Any piece of a kanji that ...
Mark S.'s user avatar
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15 votes

Is there a difference in drawing between the "mouth" and "enclosure" kanji radicals?

The two radicals 口 and 囗 are indeed different, even though they are hard to distinguish in modern scripts/fonts. This "standardization" of unifying the looks of unrelated elements is somewhat ...
Earthliŋ's user avatar
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15 votes
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Does the etymology of 星 suggest the japanese/chinese knew the sun was a star?

No, because「星」was not the original character for the word meaning star. 「星」was originally written「晶」: These are oracle bone script samples, and by that stage stars were already characterised as ...
dROOOze's user avatar
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14 votes
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About the kanji 鱈 where 魚's bottom is written as 大

It's an older but common variant of the fish radical. (The entries below are for the character「蘇」which is much more common than「鱈」but illustrates the same development) Looks like it is related ...
sazarando's user avatar
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14 votes

Is there any reason a lot of body parts use the Month/Moon radical?

The form that looks like 月 has several different origins, most of which are 肉 (flesh), 月 (moon), and 舟 (boat, 𣍝). Those shapes have been conflated during the development until the 9th century. The ...
broccoli forest's user avatar
13 votes
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Is there a difference in drawing between the "mouth" and "enclosure" kanji radicals?

In printed form, they are the same except for their size. Mouth is smaller than enclosure. Enclosure encloses other radicals or kanji, but mouth never takes anything inside it. Some common kanji ...
siikamiika's user avatar
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12 votes
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Can an individual Kanji character have more than one radical?

Strictly speaking, each kanji belongs to only one radical. According to Wikipedia (emphasis mine): 部首 A Chinese radical (Chinese: 部首; pinyin: bùshǒu; literally: "section header") is a ...
naruto's user avatar
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11 votes
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Why is there two different ways of writing the 衣 component?

So, the general spirit of the question has been answered - the key ideas being that radicals (dictionary headers) are not the same as generic components that are found in characters, and thus in ...
dROOOze's user avatar
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11 votes
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The thing in the left of 印

Good answer from @jogloran - here's an idea of the glyph evolution in case you're not convinced: 商甲乙112合集22148春秋金曾白𩃲簠集成4631秦簡秦律十八種睡虎地秦簡今楷  「印」 is comprised of a hand 「爪・爫」 pressing down on a ...
dROOOze's user avatar
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10 votes
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Two Kanji Radicals for "River"?

川 is the kanji used normally for "river". 巛 (まがりがわ) is a radical, like 氵(さんずい). When speaking about radicals, 川 and 巛 are said to be the same radical - radical 47, but only 川 is seen as both a ...
strawberry jam's user avatar
10 votes

Is there a difference in drawing between the "mouth" and "enclosure" kanji radicals?

Unfortunately, there's a bit of confusion on this page. The distinction between「口」and「囗」is not how they're drawn, but the functional role they play in characters. While「囗」does indeed mean enclosure, ...
dROOOze's user avatar
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10 votes

What is the top component of the 益 kanji?

時期字體 字形 參考資料 戰國・秦璽印 133珍秦齋古印 秦簡 秦律雜抄15睡虎地秦簡 篆 皿部說文解字 西漢隸 相馬經5上馬王堆帛書 東漢隸 華山廟碑 楷 「益」 depicts a shallow container / dish / vessel 「皿」 (see e.g. the bottom part of 「盟」, 「盛」, etc.) with water 「...
dROOOze's user avatar
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9 votes
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Is "爿" a 略字--if so, how is it pronounced/written normally?

Sure looks like 先に to me. You can see the two horizontal lines for the character in your image both come out the other side of the vertical line they cross, unlike 爿, which I had never seen before ...
Mindful's user avatar
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9 votes

The thing in the left of 印

You're right that it's not a radical. For instance, the radical of 印 for dictionary purposes is actually 卩. The "E" looking thing is actually a rotated version of the component 爪 found at the top of ...
jogloran's user avatar
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8 votes

About the kanji 鱈 where 魚's bottom is written as 大

It's a nonstandard variant (異体字) of 鱈. In modern kanji dictionaries, 火 and 灬 (れんが) are usually considered different. But etymologically, these are the same radical, both representing fire. 脚にあるときは、...
naruto's user avatar
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8 votes

Why is there two different ways of writing the 衣 component?

Edit: Please read this later answer which corrects much of the mistakes that the Japanese sources (that I used) have with more recent and accurate Chinese information. I'll keep this answer around so ...
Yannick's user avatar
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8 votes

What's the connection between a spoon (匕) and the old age (⺹)? (Kanji: 老)

It appears that the 匕 component that we see in 老 did not start out as the same character as 匕 "spoon", but instead as a stylization of long hair and a cane. This is more apparent if you compare the ...
Eiríkr Útlendi's user avatar
7 votes
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Can I use a Chinese newspaper to learn kanji radicals and maybe some kanji?

It is not a good idea to learn Japanese Kanji reading Chinese newspapers. Of course, a majority of Chinese characters used both in China and Japan have same or similar meanings, however, the grammar ...
Rathony's user avatar
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7 votes

What is the significance of a repeated radical in a Kanji character?

What you are referring to are called 理義字. Radicals containing more strokes are more likely to emphasize quantity/intensity/scale as you have mentioned: 轟 (roaring), the sound of many carriages. 昌(...
BJCUAI's user avatar
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7 votes
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What is the upper radical in the Kanji 悪?

Do you know the name of this radical ? It is 亜【あ】, which is not only a component (calling it radical is technically wrong) but an independent character that even has a dedicated page on Wiktionary. ...
broccoli forest's user avatar
7 votes

Is the water radical sometimes three strokes and sometimes two strokes?

While 「氵」 is indeed an abbreviation of 「水」 (water), it is rather unfortunate that the colloquial name of 「冫」 in both Chinese and Japanese implies that 「冫」 has something to do with water. To emphasise, ...
dROOOze's user avatar
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7 votes

飠vs.𩙿How interchangeable are these?

According to the official 常用漢字表, the difference between components 飠 and 𩙿 is that of handwriting and printing standard. It is reiterated in the document that such two shapes are equivalent, along ...
broccoli forest's user avatar
7 votes

Why are 关 and 复 half-width in Japanese?

EDIT: With some more research, I found the reason. As I expected, it's due to historical unification of JIS X kanji with Unicode codepoints. Here's a GitHub thread about the issue, including precisely ...
jogloran's user avatar
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6 votes

Is there a list of components all the kanjis are made of?

The "pieces" are called "radicals", and yes there is a list of all of them. There is a list of 214 radicals used in the Chinese language called the "Kangxi Radicals", located here. There is a ...
bcloutier's user avatar
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6 votes
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Is there a list of components all the kanjis are made of?

James Heisig's "Remembering the Kanji" takes the approach of diving the joyo kanji up into all of its "pieces" so you can take a look at that.
james_s_tayler's user avatar

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