The Chinese character 正

And its character component form


  1. just (right)
  2. main
  3. upright
  4. straight
  5. correct
  6. positive

see more definitions here

正 is both a character and a Chinese character component

Everything you need to know about the Chinese character component æ­£ fang in an easily downloadable and shareable image

can be used as a phonetic component in a Chinese character. You’ll find the Chinese character component 正 in characters and words that are pronounced exactly the same: ‘zhèng’.
You’ll also find it in characters whose pronunciation is very close to zhèng (often, only the tone differs).

These characters all contain 正 and sound like ‘zheng’:


Political, politics, government


Disease, illness


Whole, complete


Journey, trip, expedition

Other pronunciations of words with the phonetic character component 正

The phonetic character component 正 can also be found in words that have a close sound to “zhèng”. can also be pronounced “zhēng” so you’ll find the phonetic character component in words pronounced zhēng and even zhěng.

The Chinese language is over 5000 years old, so, unsurprisingly, some characters’ pronunciations have evolved a little over time.
Chinese characters containing 正 as a component will therefore sometimes have a  different pronunciation. This pronunciation can be either close to the sound 正 but not quite the same, or even totally different as you’ll see below


You will, rarely, find the character component 正 in words pronounced:

wāi: askew, crooked 

yān: where, how

 gāng: stars of the Big Dipper that constitute the tail of the dipper

You’ll also find the phonetic component 正 in 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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NinchaneseChinese Character Component 正 zheng (phonetic)