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Kanji reference

GaijinGirl

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Do Japanese keep kanji dictionaries at ready access? Since I read somewhere that if a Japanese forgets a kanji for a word, they can write it out phonetically in hiragana, that implies to me that forgetting kanji is not uncommon.

How are kanji dictionaries organized? The one I have that is intended for english speakers is sorted from most common to least common, and then by the number of strokes it takes to write it. There is also an index in the back that is sorted with the words in romaji and is in alphabetical order.
 

NANGI

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Konnichiwa GaijinGirl-san! Kazuma-san!

Usually, the Japanese has a Kanji-dictionarie at home. I have some kanji dictionaries.
Yes, if the Japanese forgets a kanji for a word, they write it out phonetically in hiragana, and after they look up a Kanji in a dictionary. But if there is the other person(parents, friend, colleague or someone), they ask them at first. This is a daily occurrence.

Yes, it's sorted by alphabetical order. The Japanese look up a Kanji in a dictionary by pronunciation. But what do they when if the Japanese find their unknown Kanji? The Japanese can look up an unknown Kanji in a dictionary by two ways.
One is a symbol(part) of Kanji. Difficult Kanji made from a construction of some Kanji(symbol). The Japanese look up a Kanji by those parts of Kanji.
The another is a number of drawing lines. The Japanese can count a number of drawing lines. For instance "A". Alphabet "A" made from three lines "/", "-" and "\". It is same as Kanji. Kanji has a number of drawing lines themselves. And the Japanese can look up by those number of drawing lines.

But now, a lot of the Japanese use computer and computer show some Kanji when the Japanese write Kanji. The Japanese only pick Kanji out from those preparations. It is easy to write Kanji but is easy to forget how to write Kanji. :D

NANGI
 

Enfour

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Also the new technology of internet enabled mobile phones, lets people look up kanji where-ever they are. 😄

There are a number different ways you can look them up using your phone, but by far the easiest way is to use the kana-kanji henkan (hiragana to kanji conversion) on the phone and then cut and paste into the on-line dictionary.

Many dictionaries on phones also have radical lookup as well as stroke counts or even on-yomi/kun-yomi look ups. (Different readings of a kanji) 🙂

Hope this helps. ;)

"Have you had your daily Tango today?" 👍
 

GaijinGirl

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It must not just be me that feels like a detective when I am trying to figure out what a kanji means.

Since I originally posted my question, I found this site: WWWJDIC
which has been extraordinarily helpful.

It is amazing to me how the use of kanji in Japanese makes it much easier to learn the sense of a new word than it is in other languages. It seems like the etymology is just there to be seen!

Nihongo is neato!:)
 

Enfour

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Originally posted by GaijinGirl
It must not just be me that feels like a detective when I am trying to figure out what a kanji means.

Sign of a healthy curiosity which is the precurser for learning. Keep it up Gaijin Girl...

BTW Edict is famous and is used by many on-line dictionaries. Some are better than others or are prettier than others, but the data is all the same.

Jim Breen is a legend among non-native Japanese speakers/students.
 
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