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Hanja Lesson 11: 名, 品, 金, 李, 正

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In this lesson, you will learn five new 漢字 characters that are all related to names. In addition to three actual surnames, you will learn two other characters that are typically found in words dealing with names.



= = Name
(Korean name:
이름 )

You come across this character a lot in Korea, and it is sometimes used on government forms to ask for one’s name.

Lesson11pic1Common words using this character:
서名 = signature
名함 = business card
名사 = noun
大名사 = proper noun
名단 = list of names
유名하다 = famous



= = Thing
(Korean name:
물건 )

It’s hard to give definitions for a lot of these words because the character “品” just means “thing/product.” Usually, the other character in the word can inform the reader/listener what type of product is being referred to.

Lesson11pic2Common words using this character:
작品 = some sort of work/art piece
제品 = some sort of product/goods
상品  = some sort of product/goods
식品 = some sort of food product
물品 = some sort of product/goods
약品 = some sort of medical product
品목 = item
品질 = quality (of a product)
화장品 = cosmetic product



=/ = Common Surname, Gold/Money
(Korean name:
한국식한자, )

There are literally millions of people in Korea with the surname “김” (Kim). This character is used to represent this last name, and is very important to be able to know/recognize because most (if not all) people in Korean know how to write their name using 漢字 characters.

When use it to represent the last name, this character is pronounced as “김.”

However, it can also have the meaning of “gold/money.” When used to represent “gold,” it is pronounced as “금.”

Lesson11pic3Common words using this character:
金연아 = Yuna Kim (famous Korean figure skater)
… I could go on and on listing Korean people with the family name “金”
요金 = charge/fare
황金 = gold
出金 = a withdrawal
현金 = cash
金속 = metal
金리 = interest rate
金요日 = Friday
장학金 = scholarship



李 = 이/리 = Common Surname
(Korean name: 오얏나무 리) (recently referred to as 자두나무 이/리)

The second most common surname in Korea. Equally as important as 金 because, as I said, everybody knows how to write their name using 漢字 – and people often do.

While this character has a meaning (and usage) aside from the surname, you will probably only come across those words if you specifically set out to be a 漢字 scholar.

Lesson11pic4Common words using this character:
李슬기 = (Seulgi Lee) My girlfriend’s name
… Again, I could go on and on listing Korean people with the family name “李”



= = Right/Proper/Correct
(Korean name:
바를 )

The meaning of this word is fairly difficult, and the words that it is found in are also difficult. However, the character itself is easy to draw and I specifically wanted to

introduce this character before introducing similar looking characters in upcoming lessons (for example: 定)

正 is usually found in difficult 漢字 words where the meaning is related to something being or changing to/from something right/correct/proper/normal.

In addition to difficult words, 正 it is a relatively common character in Korean names.

One other interesting note – the strokes of this character are often used by Korean people to count things, much like we do in the West with drawing four vertical strokes and then crossing them all out with a horizontal stroke to count to five ( | | | | ).

Lesson11pic5Common words using this character:
(Don’t be alarmed if you know none of these words. Most of them are fairly difficult)
개正 = revision
正상 = normal
교正 = proofreading
부正 = corruption
正四각형 = square (correctly shaped four-sided shape)


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Click here for a PDF copy of all our Hanja lessons.