The Chinese character 冫
And its meaning component form
(trad: 冫 )
- “ice” radical in Chinese characters
Here’s a sentence using 冫:
bīng xiāng lǐ de dōng xi tā quán dōu chī wán le
He ate everything in the fridge.
冫is a meaning character component
The semantic component 冫was formerly used as a standalone character and meant the same thing as 冰, which means ice. It now only functions as a component. It has 2 meanings, one is for things that are cold, or are at a low temperature, and the second meaning relates to water and liquid.
These characters all contain 冫:
The character component 冫in other types of words
The meaning component 冫 can also be found in Chinese characters that are less directly related to these themes.
That’s either because their meaning has evolved over time, or because the characters’ meanings used to involve water, the cold, low temperatures or liquids before and no longer do. Sometimes 冫 is also the phonetic component in a character, so always ask yourself when you run into it: does it indicate something that has to do with liquids or the cold?
Most of the time it will, but sometimes, just so you know, it won’t or the link won’t be very clear. Mandarin is a living language, so that’s not surprising!
You can also find the character component 冫used in words indirectly related to the cold, low temperatures, water, liquids or completely unrelated to these themes, such as:
准 zhǔn: to allow; to grant; in accordance with; in the light of; accurate; standard; definitely; certainly; about to
弱 ruò: weak, feeble, young, inferior…
You’ll also find the meaning component 冫for cold, low temperatures, water or liquids 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. Chinese 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.