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Monkey Ape in Chinese / Japanese...

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Monkey / Ape

China yuán
Japan saru
Monkey / Ape

猿 is one of those cases when an error was made as Chinese characters were absorbed into the Japanese language during the 5th century.

In Japanese, this means monkey.
In Chinese, this means ape.

The Japanese word for ape, means monkey in Chinese, so you can see how they were simply reversed.


Year of the Monkey / Zodiac Sign
China hóu

猴 is the character for monkey in Chinese.
猴 means ape in Japanese due to a error made long ago as Japan absorbed Chinese characters.

If you were born in the year of the monkey, you . . .

Are smart, brave, active and competitive.
Like new things.
Have a good memory.
Are quick to respond
Have an easy time winning people's trust.
Are however, not very patient.

See also our Chinese Zodiac page.

Note: This character does have the meaning of monkey in Korean Hanja but is not used very often.

Monkey Fist

Japan saruken
Monkey Fist

猿拳 is the Japanese martial arts title, "Monkey Fist," referring to Monkey-Style Kung Fu.

猿拳 is very similar to a Chinese term that uses a different first character (the characters for ape and monkey were reversed when Japan borrowed Chinese characters, so this would be "Ape Fist" if a Chinese person read it).

Not the results for monkey ape that you were looking for?

Below are some entries from our dictionary that may match your monkey ape search...


If shown, 2nd row is Simp. Chinese

Simple Dictionary Definition

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Mandarin yuán / yuan2
Taiwan yüan
Japanese mase ませ
 mashira ましら
 saru さる
Chinese ape
Japanese (out-dated or obsolete kana usage) monkey (esp. the Japanese macaque, Macaca fuscata); ape; non-human primate; (1) (kana only) monkey (esp. the Japanese macaque, Macaca fuscata); ape; non-human primate; (2) (derogatory term) sly person; (3) (derogatory term) idiot; hick; (4) sliding wooden bolt (for holding a door or window shut); (5) clasp used to control the height of a pot-hook; (6) (archaism) bathhouse prostitute; (surname) Mase; (surname) Mashira; (female given name) Saru
This term is used in Buddhism, but due to a licensing issue, we cannot show the definition
More info / calligraphy:
Monkey / Ape


see styles
Japanese saru サル
Japanese (1) (kana only) monkey (esp. the Japanese macaque, Macaca fuscata); ape; non-human primate; (2) (derogatory term) sly person; (3) (derogatory term) idiot; hick; (4) sliding wooden bolt (for holding a door or window shut); (5) clasp used to control the height of a pot-hook; (6) (archaism) bathhouse prostitute; (place-name) Sarh (Chad); Sal


see styles
Japanese etekou / eteko えてこう
Japanese (1) monkey; ape; (2) personification of a monkey (e.g. Mr. Monkey)

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Japanese sarugami さるがみ
Japanese monkey god; ape god

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Mandarin yuán bì / yuan2 bi4
Taiwan yüan pi
Japanese enpi えんぴ
Chinese arms like those of an ape — muscular, or long and dexterous
Japanese monkey arm; long arm

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Search for Monkey Ape in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary

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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
saruyuán / yuan2 / yuan yüan
Monkey hóu / hou2 / hou
Monkey Fist 猿拳saruken

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A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

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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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