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南山之壽 is a wish for long life for someone. The first part of this Japanese phrase is, "Nan Zan," which literally means "south mountain." This mountain is one of good wishes, good fortune, and prosperity. The title is often used as a salutation of good wishes.
The third Kanji is just a connector, and the last Kanji means long life or longevity.
I guess you could translate this phrase as "May your life be as long as Nan Zan is tall."
This is a phrase that means "May you have good fortune as great as the eastern oceans, and may your life last as long as the southern mountains."
In ancient Chinese mythology, the eastern oceans and southern mountains are where God resides (basically it is the same as saying "heaven"). So it's like saying, "May your good fortune and life be as vast as the heavens."
There is also a longer, 14-character version of this phrase. Also, this can be cut into two scrolls (with half the phrase on each side - great for hanging on either side of a doorway). Just let me know if you'd like a special version (there is an additional cost).
Below are some entries from our dictionary that may match your longevity long life wishes search...
If shown, 2nd row is Simp. Chinese
|Simple Dictionary Definition|
| shòu / shou4
hisashi / ひさし hisa / ひさ toshinaga / としなが suzaki / すざき susaki / すさき kotobuki / ことぶき
long life; old age; age; life; birthday; funerary; surname Shou
(out-dated kanji) (1) congratulations; felicitations; best wishes; (2) longevity; long life; (given name) Hisashi; (female given name) Hisa; (surname) Toshinaga; (surname) Suzaki; (surname) Susaki; (surname) Kotobuki
|yasushi / やすし hitoshi / ひとし hisashi / ひさし hisae / ひさえ hisa / ひさ toshikatsu / としかつ toshio / としお tamotsu / たもつ sumi / すみ suzu / すず suzaki / すざき susaki / すさき su / す jufuku / じゅふく ju / じゅ satoshi / さとし kotoho / ことほ kotobuki / ことぶき||
(1) congratulations; felicitations; best wishes; (2) longevity; long life; (personal name) Yasushi; (male given name) Hitoshi; (surname, given name) Hisashi; (female given name) Hisae; (female given name) Hisa; (given name) Toshikatsu; (personal name) Toshio; (surname, female given name) Toshi; (given name) Tamotsu; (female given name) Sumi; (given name) Suzu; (surname) Suzaki; (surname) Susaki; (surname) Su; (personal name) Jufuku; (surname, female given name) Ju; (given name) Satoshi; (female given name) Kotoho; (p,s,f) Kotobuki
|kotobuki / ことぶき||(1) congratulations; felicitations; best wishes; (2) longevity; long life|
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The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...
|Title||Characters||Romaji(Romanized Japanese)||Various forms of Romanized Chinese|
Long Life Wishes
|nan zan no jyu|
Long Life Wishes
|fú rú dōng hǎi shòu bǐ nán shān|
fu2 ru2 dong1 hai3 shou4 bi3 nan2 shan1
fu ru dong hai shou bi nan shan
|fu ju tung hai shou pi nan shan
|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.
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.
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