The Chinese character 里

And its component form

  1. inside
  2. interior
  3. measure of length
  4. 500 meters

里 is both a character and a character component


Everything you need to know about the Chinese character component 里 li in an easily downloadable and sharable image

can be used as a phonetic component in a Chinese character. You’ll find the Chinese character component 里 in characters and words pronounced “li”.

These characters all contain 里 and sound like “li”:

logic; reason; texture

one hundredth

mile

lithium

When used as a character component, 里 can also be found in words that have a close sound to “li”.

The Chinese language is over 5000 years old, so, unsurprisingly, some characters’ pronunciations have evolved a little over time.
Chinese characters containing 里 as a component will therefore sometimes have a pronunciation close to the sound 里 but not quite the same. You’ll see 里 in characters that are pronounced “liang” or “kui”. Characters containing 里 will also sometimes uses the final “-ong”, and may sound like “dong”,”tong”, chong” or “zhong”.

Exceptions

You can find the character component 里 in characters pronounced “liang” or “kui”, such as:

liáng: to measure

kuī : to laugh at

You can find the character component 里 being pronounced “dong”, “tong”, “chong” and other close sounds in words like:

dǒng: to understand

chóng: repeat; duplicate

You’ll also find the phonetic component 里 in many other Chinese characters. Browse the full list here.

All 80,000+ Chinese characters share the same character components. Chinese character components are therefore essential for Chinese learners: they are the building blocks of Chinese. Character character components help tremendously with understanding a character: they provide information on its meaning or on its pronunciation. In short, knowing character components will help you analyse, learn and remember each Chinese character much better.

Join us on Ninchanese as we teach you everything about the Chinese character components you need to know, little by little.

Related: Explore the key character components to know one by one, with this selection of meaning components and phonetic components.

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ninchaCharacter Component 里 li (phonetic)