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The name Danger in Chinese / Japanese...

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Crisis equals Danger plus Opportunity?

 wēi jī
Crisis equals Danger plus Opportunity? Scroll

危機 means crisis in Chinese and Japanese.

Separately, the first character here does mean “danger” or “to endanger,” and the second character can mean “opportunity.”

However, I want to debunk a myth that was propagated by some westerners who did not have a clear understanding of Asian languages...

While often, Chinese/Japanese/Korean compound words (words of two or more characters) are the sum of their parts, this is not always the case. The compound is often understood with a completely different meaning than the two characters individually.

Many have said that the Chinese/Japanese/Korean word for Crisis is made up of the characters for “danger” and “opportunity.” 危機 is true when phrased this way.
However, it's not absolutely correct to say that “danger + opportunity = crisis” in Asian cultures.

English example:
If I tell you that...
Bovine creature + Guy behind the plate in baseball = Locomotive train protection cowcatcher would think I was mad. But consider that “cow + catcher = cowcatcher,” which is the device that used to be found on steam engines to protect them if they hit an animal on the tracks. When we hear the word “cowcatcher,” we don't separate the words into their individual meanings (necessarily).
The same is true with the word for crisis in Chinese/Japanese/Korean. While you can separate the characters, few Asian people would automatically do so in their minds.

The final answer:
It is a half-truth to say, “danger plus opportunity equals crisis” in Chinese/Japanese/Korean. Use this statement and concept with caution.

Also, the second character can mean “secret” or “machine,” depending on context so I guess you have to say “a dangerous machine = crisis” or “danger + a secret = crisis.” Both of these are only slightly more ridiculous than the first premise.

PS: 危機 is probably not a great word for a scroll unless you have a special use for it.


A dangerous character in every way

Danger Scroll

危 means danger, peril, or “to endanger” in Chinese, Japanese, and old Korean.

If you live a dangerous life or want to subtly warn others that you are a dangerous person, this may be the selection for you.

This also means “danger” and sometimes “fear” in Japanese and Korean but is seldom seen outside of compound words in those languages (as a single character, it's kind of like an abbreviation for danger in Japanese and Korean). 危 is also a rather odd selection for a wall scroll anyway. It's only here because people search for danger on our website.

These search terms might be related to Danger:

Fate / Chance Meeting

Fate / Opportunity / Chance

Risk / Venture

Risk Taker

Serendipity / Chance Discovery

Not the results for danger that you were looking for?

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


If shown, 2nd row is Simp. Chinese

Simple Dictionary Definition

see styles

More info & calligraphy:

danger; to endanger; Taiwan pr. [wei2]
(1) danger; (2) {astron} (See 危宿,二十八宿,玄武・げんぶ・2) Chinese "rooftop" constellation (one of the 28 mansions)


see styles
 bouken / boken

More info & calligraphy:

(n,vs,vi) (1) adventure; venture; (n,adj-na,vs,vi) (2) venture which is unlikely to succeed; risky attempt; danger; hazard; risk

see styles

 kyuu / kyu
urgent; pressing; rapid; hurried; worried; to make (sb) anxious
(adjectival noun) (1) sudden; abrupt; unexpected; (adjectival noun) (2) urgent; pressing; (adjectival noun) (3) steep; sharp; precipitous; (adjectival noun) (4) rapid; swift; fast; (5) emergency; crisis; danger; (6) urgency; hurrying; haste; (7) (See 序破急) (in gagaku or noh) end of a song
Haste, urgency; promptly.

see styles
to suffer (from illness); to contract (a disease); misfortune; trouble; danger; worry
to suffer

see styles

(bound form) enemy; (bound form) to be a match for; to rival; (bound form) to resist; to withstand
(1) (ant: 味方・1) opponent; rival; adversary; (2) menace; danger; threat; enemy
To oppose, compete; an enemy.

see styles
to limp; to sprain (an ankle or wrist); to move carefully, as if evading a danger; to scurry

see styles
danger; dangerous; rugged

see styles
disaster; distress; to scold
(n,n-suf) (1) difficulty; trouble; hardship; (2) accident; disaster; danger; (3) fault; defect; flaw; (4) criticism; charge; blame
Difficult, hard; distress, adversity; opposite of 易 easy; translit. nan, nam.


see styles
 keewai; keiwai(sk) / keewai; kewai(sk)
    ケーワイ; ケイワイ(sk)
(noun or adjectival noun) (1) (slang) (abbreviation) (from 空気 (kūki) and 読めない (yomenai)) (See 空気が読めない) unable to read the situation; unable to pick up on the mood (e.g. of a conversation); person who is unable to read the room; (2) (abbreviation) (from 危険 (kiken) and 予知 (yochi)) danger prevention (e.g. in the workplace)


see styles
one difficulty; one danger



see styles
qīng wēi
    qing1 wei1
ch`ing wei
    ching wei
in danger of collapse; in a parlous state; (of person) treacherous



see styles
chū xiǎn
    chu1 xian3
ch`u hsien
    chu hsien
to get out of trouble; to escape from danger; a danger appears; threatened by danger



see styles
jìng cǎo
    jing4 cao3
ching ts`ao
    ching tsao
 keisou / keso
tough upright grass; (fig.) a staunch character who is loyal despite danger and hardship
wind-resistant blade of grass; resistant idea (metaphorically); (personal name) Keisou


see styles
qín wáng
    qin2 wang2
ch`in wang
    chin wang
 kinnou / kinno
to serve the king diligently; to save the country in times of danger; to send troops to rescue the king
loyalty to the emperor; loyalism


see styles
wēi jí
    wei1 ji2
wei chi
to endanger; to jeopardize; a danger (to life, national security etc)


see styles
wēi hài
    wei1 hai4
wei hai
to jeopardize; to harm; to endanger; harmful effect; damage; CL:個|个[ge4]
injury; harm; danger


see styles
wēi jí
    wei1 ji2
wei chi
 kikyuu / kikyu
critical; desperate (situation)
(1) emergency; crisis; imminent danger; (2) (obsolete) (See 絶滅危惧) Vulnerable (conservation status); VU


see styles
crisis; grave danger; serious depression


see styles
wēi dài
    wei1 dai4
wei tai
grave danger; in jeopardy; in a critical condition
danger; jeopardy; distress


see styles
(noun or adjectival noun) possibility of danger


see styles
wéi pí
    wei2 pi2
wei p`i
    wei pi
danger and tiredness


see styles
wēi pò
    wei1 po4
wei p`o
    wei po
urgent; pressing danger


see styles
wēi bī
    wei1 bi1
wei pi
grave danger


see styles
(noun or adjectival noun) (1) (ant: 安全) danger; peril; hazard; (noun or adjectival noun) (2) risk



see styles
wēi xiǎn
    wei1 xian3
wei hsien
danger; dangerous



see styles
wēi nàn
    wei1 nan4
wei nan
peril; danger; hazard; distress


see styles
(Godan verb with "mu" ending) (1) (kana only) to conceive; to become pregnant; (transitive verb) (2) (kana only) to get filled with (e.g. sails filled with wind); to be swollen with; (3) (kana only) to contain (e.g. contradiction or danger); (v5m,vi) (4) (kana only) to be swollen and ripe (of a plant ear, head, or sprout)


see styles
(Godan verb with "mu" ending) (1) (kana only) to conceive; to become pregnant; (transitive verb) (2) (kana only) to get filled with (e.g. sails filled with wind); to be swollen with; (3) (kana only) to contain (e.g. contradiction or danger); (v5m,vi) (4) (kana only) to be swollen and ripe (of a plant ear, head, or sprout)


see styles
ān wēi
    an1 wei1
an wei
safety and danger; safety
fate; safety; welfare


see styles
ān è
    an1 e4
an o
security and danger

Click here for more danger results from our dictionary

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

Title CharactersRomaji (Romanized Japanese)Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Crisis equals Danger plus Opportunity?危機
kikiwēi jī / wei1 ji1 / wei ji / weijiwei chi / weichi
Dangerkiwēi / wei1 / wei
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.


Lookup Danger in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary

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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.

Some people may refer to this entry as Danger Kanji, Danger Characters, Danger in Mandarin Chinese, Danger Characters, Danger in Chinese Writing, Danger in Japanese Writing, Danger in Asian Writing, Danger Ideograms, Chinese Danger symbols, Danger Hieroglyphics, Danger Glyphs, Danger in Chinese Letters, Danger Hanzi, Danger in Japanese Kanji, Danger Pictograms, Danger in the Chinese Written-Language, or Danger in the Japanese Written-Language.

113 people have searched for Danger in Chinese or Japanese in the past year.
Danger was last searched for by someone else on Feb 27th, 2024