Learn Chinese word radical – Small Ear

The “small ear” radical, , which is a good graphical representation of the human ear, is officially known as the “mound” radical when it is placed on the left side of a character. When it is placed on the right side of a character, it is known as the “city” radical. You could, if you wish, imagine your ears to be a pair of radar antennas that help determine the location of things within their range.

(péi) is to accompany someone or to keep someone company.

Wǒ péi nǐ qù.
Let me go there with you.

(suí) means to follow or to go along with someone. When you ask someone what he or she would like to eat or drink, you may get this response: “随便. (Suíbiàn. Whatever is convenient.)”

(duì) is a row of people. 排队 (páiduì) is to form a line, as in a cafeteria.

(fù) is the action of attaching or enclosing something as an appendage. 附和 (fùhè) is to second someone’s opinion. 附近 (fùjìn) means in the vicinity.

Tā zài xìn li fù le yī zhāng zhàopiàn.
He enclosed a photo with the letter.

Tā jiā jiù zài fùjìn.
He lives right in the vicinity.

(fáng) as a verb means to guard against someone or something. 防火 (fánghuǒ) means fire-retardant or fireproof. Yes, you guessed it, waterproof is 防水 (fángshuǐ).

A well known Chinese saying goes like this:

害人之心不可有; 防人之心不可无.
Hài rén zhī xīn bùkě yǒu; fáng rén zhī xīn bùkě wú.
Never think of harming others, but do always stay on your guard.

(xiǎn) means dangerous or by a close call. 危险 (wēixiǎn) means dangerous, or danger. 险胜 (xiǎnshèng) means to win by a hair’s breadth.

(lòu) means ugly, crude or otherwise undesirable. In everyday speech, when you want to say that something is ugly or disgraceful, use (chǒu), or 丑陋 (chǒulòu).

(yuàn) could refer to a courtyard, an institute or a government office.

(gé) is to separate or to be separate. 隔壁 (gébì) means next door.

(jì) is a border or a boundary, or that which is between two entities. 国际 (guójì) means international.

You already know that (nà) means “that one”. Following are a few other commonly used Chinese characters featuring the “small ear” radical on the right side.

(bāng) means a nation or a country. Therefore, 友邦 (yǒubāng) refers to a nation that is on friendly terms with one’s own country.

(dū) as a noun refers to the capital or a big city.

(jiāo) or 郊外 (jiāowà) are the suburbs or outskirts of a city.

(xié) or 邪恶 (xiéè) means evil. (xié) also means unorthodox.

(láng) is an official title used in ancient China. Nowadays it is taken to mean a person, usually a male, as in: 新郎 (xīnláng bridegroom), 牛郎 (niúláng, cowherd) and 情郎 (qíng láng lover). An exception is found with 女郎 (nǚláng), which refers to a young woman.

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