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Paleography

(5,015 words)

Author(s): Olivier VENTURE
The term paleography usually designates the study of ancient writing in all its aspects (decipherment, dating, hand identification, provenience identification…). The term gǔwénzìxué 古文字學 in Chinese, on the other hand, means the ‘study of ancient characters’. "Ancient characters" ( gǔwén 古文) here refers to Chinese writing before the Qín unification (221 BCE), as it is usually held that the form of the Chinese script became quite close to the modern one since that time. Chinese characters written before this period are difficult or imp…
Date: 2017-03-02

Jièbǐzì 借筆字 (Stroke-Borrowing Characters)

(202 words)

Author(s): Olivier VENTURE
The term jièbǐzì 借筆字 (also jièbǐwén 借筆文), or ‘stroke-borrowing characters’, usually designates Chinese characters in which some strokes are shared by different components, or, more often, it refers to aggregated characters ( héwén 合文) that share single strokes or even entire components. Although this kind of graphical simplification was already noticed by Qīng dynasty scholars (like Ruǎn Yuán 阮元 and Sūn Yìràng 孫詒讓), the first specialized articles dedicated to this topic were only published at the beginning of the 21st century (Wú 2000:308–337; Liú 2001:397–410). The table below …
Date: 2017-03-02