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| 1. Diligent Study Proverb
2. Read / Study
3. Study / Learn / School
4. Good Good Study, Day Day Up
5. River of Literacy, Sea of Learning
| 6. There is no royal road to learning
7. Learn from Wisdom
8. Learning is Eternal
9. Learn New Ways From Old
10. Learning is Eternal
|11. Read 10,000 Books, Travel 10,000 Miles|
12. Learn From Your Predecessors
13. Better to Travel 10,000 Miles than Read 10,000 Books
14. You May Learn from Victory,...
This Chinese proverb means, "Bore a hole on the wall to make use of the neighbor's light to study."
鑿壁偷光 is a nice gift for a very studious person.
Kuang Heng was born during the Western Han period. He was very fond of reading ever since he was young. However, he could not go to school since his family was poor, and he had to borrow books from people to learn.
In order to borrow these books he normally did chores for people who had them. When he became older, he had to work in the field from sunrise to sunset since his family's financial situation did not get any better. Thus, he tried to study at night but he had no lamp.
One day, he noticed that there was light from the neighbor's house coming through a crack in the wall. This made him very happy, so he dug a larger hole from the crack and read in the light that shone through. This diligent study eventually made him an accomplished person.
This Chinese character means, "to read out loud," or "to study books."
學 is "study" or "learn" in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja.
學 is a very broad character that can mean a lot of things related to scholarship. It can refer to a school (in fact, if you put the character for "big" in front of this, you have "college" or "university," if you put the word for "middle," you have "middle school." This can also mean science; the process of acquiring knowledge; learning; scholarship; erudition; knowledge. It can also add the Chinese or Japanese version of "-ology" (the study of) to many words.
There is a very common simplified version of this character. You will see this form in modern Japan and mainland China, Singapore, and other places. If you want this simplified version, please click on the character shown to the right instead of the "select and customize" button above.
好好學習天天向上 is a famous proverb by Chairman Mao Zedong that sounds really strange when directly translated into English. I include it in our database of phrases to illustrate how different the construction and grammar can be between Chinese and English. The direct translation is "Good Good Study, Day Day Up." In Chinese, a repeated character/word can often serve to reinforce the idea (like saying "very" or suggesting "a lot of"). So "good good" really means "a lot of good." While "day day" can be better translated as "day in day out." The idea of "up" has a meaning in China of "rising above" or "improving."
After understanding all of this, we come up with a slightly better translation of "With lot of good study, day in day out, we raise above."
The more natural translation of this proverb would be something like, "study hard, and keep improving."
This Chinese proverb reads, "river of literacy, sea of learning"
This suggests that there is a lot to learn in the world, with an eternal amount of reading and things to study.
文江學海 is one way to translate the quote from Hippocrates, "ars longa, vita brevis," meaning, "it takes a long time to acquire and perfect one's expertise."
See Also: Learning Is Eternal
This Chinese proverb reads, "There is no royal road to learning."
This suggests that the path of learning can never be smooth, there will be difficulties and troubles along the way.
See Also: Learning Is Eternal
When you meet a wise person, you should learn from them and be inspired to become as wise as they are.
見賢思齊 is a pretty long proverb in English but in Chinese it's only four characters.
However, in Chinese the deeper meaning often surpass the dictionary definition of each character.
In this case, you should seek wise people to learn from throughout your life...
Always try to learn enough to become equal to them. It also suggests that the process of learning and seeking wisdom is a non-ending cycle.
See Also: Knowledge
This Chinese philosophy tells of how we continue to learn throughout our lives. This proverb can be translated in a few ways such as "Study has no end," "Knowledge is infinite," "No end to learning," "There's always something new to study," or "You live and learn."
The deeper meaning: Even when we finish school we are still students of the world gaining more knowledge from our surroundings with each passing day.
溫故知新 is a proverb from Confucius that is used in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean cultures.
It can be translated several ways:
Coming up with new ideas based on things learned in the past.
Examine things of the past, and obtain the new knowledge.
Developing new ideas based on study of the past.
Gain new insights through restudying old issues.
Understand the present by reviewing the past.
Learning from the past.
Review the old and know the new.
Taking a lesson from the past.
Taking a lesson from the wisdom of the ancients.
Follow the old ways.
The direct translation would be, "By asking old things know new things."
The Character meanings breakdown this way:
溫故 = ask old
知新 = know new
Explained: To learn new things that are outside of your experience, you can learn from old things of the past. You can find wisdom from history.
Note: Japanese use a simplified version of the first Kanji in modern times. So if you order this from our Japanese master calligrapher, expect the first Kanji to look like the one shown to the right.
讀萬卷書行萬裡路 is a lifelong suggestion for expanding your horizons by gaining knowledge, experience, and seeing the world.
Of course, this was written long ago when it was hard to travel 10,000 miles.
With air travel and the business I'm in, I often achieve that lifetime goal on a monthly basis.
However, I am a little behind in the book count.
Note: An ancient Chinese mile (lǐ) referred to in this proverb is about a third of a British/American mile. However, at that time, this was a great distance to travel (being written at least 1000 years before the invention of the airplane).
This Chinese proverb suggests looking at the circumstances and toils of those you proceeded before you, and learning from their experience.
This more literally means, "the cart in front overturns, a warning to the following cart."
前車之覆后車之鑒 is figuratively translated as, "draw lesson from the failure of one's predecessor," "learn from past mistakes," or compared to the English idiom, "once bitten twice shy."
Other more-direct translations:
Make the overturning of the chariot in front a warning for the chariot behind.
Learn caution through an unpleasant experience.
The wrecked coach in front should be a warning.
The overturned cart in front serves as a warning to the carts behind.
This translates a few ways:
To travel ten-thousand miles beats reading ten-thousand books.
Better to travel ten thousand li than to read ten thousand books. (a "li" is an ancient Chinese mile)
Travelling thousands of miles is better than reading thousands of books.
No matter how you slice it, this Chinese proverb is claiming that experience is more profound and meaningful than what you can get from a book. Go do it! Don't just read about it.
This Chinese proverb literally translates as: [Even a general who has won a] hundred victories [may be] hard put to see through the enemy's [strategy], [but one who has] broken [his] arm three [times] [will] be a good doctor.
Figuratively, this means: One cannot always depend on past successes to guarantee future success but one can always learn from lessons drawn from failure.
You may learn when everything goes right but the lessons learned when everything goes wrong are more vivid and lead to long-lasting wisdom.
Another way to look at this: One cannot always depend on past successes to guarantee future success but one can always learn from lessons drawn from failure.
Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.
The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...
|Title||Characters||Romaji(Romanized Japanese)||Various forms of Romanized Chinese|
|Diligent Study Proverb||鑿壁偷光|
|záo bì tōu guāng
zao2 bi4 tou1 guang1
zao bi tou guang
|tsao pi t`ou kuang
tsao pi tou kuang
|dú / du2 / du||tu|
|gaku||xué / xue2 / xue||hsüeh|
|Good Good Study, Day Day Up||好好學習天天向上|
|hǎo hǎo xué xí tiān tiān xiàng shàng
hao3 hao3 xue2 xi2 tian1 tian1 xiang4 shang4
hao hao xue xi tian tian xiang shang
|hao hao hsüeh hsi t`ien t`ien hsiang shang
hao hao hsüeh hsi tien tien hsiang shang
|River of Literacy, Sea of Learning||文江學海|
|wén jiāng xué hǎi
wen2 jiang1 xue2 hai3
wen jiang xue hai
|wen chiang hsüeh hai
|There is no royal road to learning||求學無坦途|
|qiú xué wú tǎn tú
qiu2 xue2 wu2 tan3 tu2
qiu xue wu tan tu
|ch`iu hsüeh wu t`an t`u
chiu hsüeh wu tan tu
|Learn from Wisdom||見賢思齊|
|jiàn xián sī qí
jian4 xian2 si1 qi2
jian xian si qi
|chien hsien ssu ch`i
chien hsien ssu chi
|Learning is Eternal||學無止境|
|xué wú zhǐ jìng
xue2 wu2 zhi3 jing4
xue wu zhi jing
|hsüeh wu chih ching
|Learn New Ways From Old||溫故知新|
|on ko chi shin |
|wēn gù zhī xīn
wen1 gu4 zhi1 xin1
wen gu zhi xin
|wen ku chih hsin
|Learning is Eternal||生涯學習|
|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.
Successful Chinese Character and Japanese Kanji calligraphy searches within the last few hours...
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Some people may refer to this entry as Study Kanji, Study Characters, Study in Mandarin Chinese, Study Characters, Study in Chinese Writing, Study in Japanese Writing, Study in Asian Writing, Study Ideograms, Chinese Study symbols, Study Hieroglyphics, Study Glyphs, Study in Chinese Letters, Study Hanzi, Study in Japanese Kanji, Study Pictograms, Study in the Chinese Written-Language, or Study in the Japanese Written-Language.