Strong Mind Strong Body

If you have searched my Chinese and Japanese Calligraphy Dictionary, and did not find the word or title that you were looking for, we'll be happy to add it for you. Just tell us the word or title you want, and what it means to you.
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kungfuk2
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Joined: Jun 16, 2012 7:52 am

Strong Mind Strong Body

Post by kungfuk2 » Jun 16, 2012 7:55 am

I'm possibly looking for a scroll that says "strong mind, strong body". Does this translate well into Chinese this way? I haven't found this exactly on your site, but things that are similar. I found a post from 2008 that said it had a link for a scroll that said that, but the link was gone.

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Gary
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Re: Strong Mind Strong Body

Post by Gary » Jun 16, 2012 9:00 pm

That was one of the flukes that happened when I upgraded to a new more secure version of the forum platform a few months back. A bunch of links and images got wiped.

Here's what you want:
http://www.orientaloutpost.com/options. ... 4515+24907

-Gary.

kungfuk2
Posts: 2
Joined: Jun 16, 2012 7:52 am

Re: Strong Mind Strong Body

Post by kungfuk2 » Jun 18, 2012 9:10 am

I'm confused. When I scroll to the bottom of the page, it shows a string of characters. Is this the actual phrase? Does it really take 10 characters to say "Strong Mind Strong Body" or is this some sort of proverb shown and if so, what is the translation?

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Gary
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Re: Strong Mind Strong Body

Post by Gary » Jun 18, 2012 9:45 am

The short answer: Yes, it does.

Think about this for a second...
It takes 23 letters and spaces to write "strong mind strong body" in English. It takes less than half that in Chinese.

Somehow, a lot of people have this idea that you can express something as long as Lincoln's Gettysburg Address in 3 Chinese characters. In real life, it usually takes about 1/3 to 1/2 as many Chinese characters to express an English phrase. Japanese tends to require more characters than Chinese. This is just in general, there are many exceptions.

In this case, the first two characters are "strength" or "strong" the 3rd is kind of like the English "of" and the 4th and 5th make the word for "body". The pattern is repeated more or less for the second 5 characters. You could also translate this directly as "Strength of Body, Strength of Mind". Though the meaning is more like, "Mind of Strength, Body of Strength". It's hard to directly compare English and Chinese grammar. But trust me, the meaning is what you want, and the grammar is natural in Chinese. In fact, to keep it from sounding too "wordy" in Chinese we used a different form of "strong" for the start of each 5-character line. One is kind of unyielding, resolute, staunch, strong. The other is like robust, powerful, strong.

In theory, you could write a phrase in about 6 characters, but it would be too ambiguous and not natural in Chinese. A 6-characters version could be read as "strong heart, strong torso" without the clarifying characters.

I've added this to the calligraphy database now:
http://www.orientaloutpost.com/shufa.ph ... trong+body

-Gary.

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