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Your Chinese / Japanese Calligraphy Search for "Know Thy Enemy, Know Thyself"...


Know Thy Enemy, Know Thyself

Japan te ki o shi ri o no re o shi ru
Know Thy Enemy, Know Thyself Wall Scroll

敵を知り己を知る is the Japanese version of "know your enemy, know yourself." There is a longer version of this proverb which adds, "...and you can win 100 battles."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Know Thy Enemy, Know Thyself

China zhí bǐ zhí jī
Know Thy Enemy, Know Thyself Wall Scroll

This proverb is from Sun Tzu's (Sunzi's) Art of War. It means that if you know and understand the enemy, you also know yourself. There is a secondary four characters that come after this in the Art of War (not included here) which suggest you cannot lose a battle when you follow this philosophy.

In a very literal and somewhat-boring way, this can also be translated as, "Estimate correctly one's strength as well as that of one's opponent."

Know Your Enemy, Know Yourself, and Win 100 Battles

Japan teki o shi ri o no o shi re ba hya ku sen aya u ka ra zu
Know Your Enemy, Know Yourself, and Win 100 Battles Wall Scroll

This is the longer/full Japanese version of this proverb. 敵を知り己を知れば百戦危うからず means, "Know your enemy, know yourself, and you will not fear a hundred battles."

Others will translate this as, "Know thy enemy, know thyself, yields victory in one hundred battles."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

True Victory is Victory Over Oneself

Japan masa katsu a gatsu
True Victory is Victory Over Oneself Wall Scroll

This proverb is often translated as, "True victory is victory over oneself."

However, literally, Kanji by Kanji, it means, "True victory [is] my/self victory."

My Japanese friends rate this very highly for a wall scroll.


See Also:  Know Thy Enemy Know Thyself




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The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...

Title CharactersRomaji(Romanized Japanese)Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Know Thy Enemy, Know Thyself 敵を知り己を知るte ki o shi ri o no re o shi ru
tekioshirionoreoshiru
Know Thy Enemy, Know Thyself 知彼知己zhí bǐ zhí jī
zhi2 bi3 zhi2 ji1
zhi bi zhi ji
zhibizhiji
chih pi chih chi
chihpichihchi
Know Your Enemy, Know Yourself, and Win 100 Battles 敵を知り己を知れば百戦危うからずteki o shi ri o no o shi re ba hya ku sen aya u ka ra zu
True Victory is Victory Over Oneself 正勝吾勝
正胜吾胜
masa katsu a gatsu
masakatsuagatsu
In some entries above you will see that characters have different versions above and below a line.
In these cases, the characters above the line are Traditional Chinese, while the ones below are Simplified Chinese.

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All of our calligraphy wall scrolls are handmade.

When the calligrapher finishes creating your artwork, it is taken to my art mounting workshop in Beijing where a wall scroll is made by hand from a combination of silk, rice paper, and wood.
After we create your wall scroll, it takes at least two weeks for air mail delivery from Beijing to you.

Allow a few weeks for delivery. Rush service speeds it up by a week or two for $10!

When you select your calligraphy, you'll be taken to another page where you can choose various custom options.


A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

The wall scroll that Sandy is holding in this picture is a "large size"
single-character wall scroll.
We also offer custom wall scrolls in small, medium, and an even-larger jumbo size.

A professional Chinese Calligrapher

Professional calligraphers are getting to be hard to find these days.
Instead of drawing characters by hand, the new generation in China merely type roman letters into their computer keyboards and pick the character that they want from a list that pops up.

There is some fear that true Chinese calligraphy may become a lost art in the coming years. Many art institutes in China are now promoting calligraphy programs in hopes of keeping this unique form of art alive.

Trying to learn Chinese calligrapher - a futile effort

Even with the teachings of a top-ranked calligrapher in China, my calligraphy will never be good enough to sell. I will leave that to the experts.

A high-ranked Chinese master calligrapher that I met in Zhongwei

The same calligrapher who gave me those lessons also attracted a crowd of thousands and a TV crew as he created characters over 6-feet high. He happens to be ranked as one of the top 100 calligraphers in all of China. He is also one of very few that would actually attempt such a feat.


Check out my lists of Japanese Kanji Calligraphy Wall Scrolls and Old Korean Hanja Calligraphy Wall Scrolls.

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