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On-line source for character strokes?


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I couldn't get to the link you posted. This URL came up, but a window told me I couldn't access it. Is it correct?



That's a great link, and the strokes are so slooooow that you can really follow them. I'm wondering - does anyone write caligraphy any more? It seems that most the characters I see in print are more like stick figures, like the Seal characters.


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Here's the correct URL:


I'm wondering - does anyone write caligraphy any more? It seems that most the characters I see in print are more like stick figures, like the Seal characters.

Seal characters (篆書 - zhuan shu) are completely different from the print characters (細明體 - xi ming ti - "small Ming type"). Seal characters originated around the 9th century BC and were standardized during the Qin Dynasty (3rd century BC). Writing Seal Script is itself a whole different kind of calligraphy.

The standard calligraphy characters that you normally see (and are featured in the links above) are 楷書 - kai shu. They originated near the end of the Han dynasty (around the 1st century AD) when people started using brushes to write characters. They've been mostly unchanged for the past 2000 years.

The print characters look the way they do because of the way they needed to be etched for printing presses (so that's why they have a very stick-like and angular look). They're still based on the kai shu characters though. They're called "Ming" type because they were finalized during the Ming dynasty (14th - 17th century AD). Just about every Chinese newspaper today uses this font -- I guess it's analogous to the Times New Roman font for the Western alphabets.

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If you don´t know by now...

check also the software discussed in: http://www.chinese-forums.com/viewtopic.php?t=149&highlight=Wenlin

or at the company´s website http://www.wenlin.com

you might want to download their "evaluation version".

One of the many marvellous features of this software is showing

the stroke order of many , even

obscure (simplified and traditional ) characters.


have fun

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Thanks, Ole.

I have Wenlin, and it's wonderful! Yes, they show so many strokes.

My problem was that I created files on Wenlin including the strokes they provided, but when I tried to open the files in AppleWorks so I could change the size and fonts of some of the characters and words, AppleWorks didn't recognize the code used for the strokes. So, I was hoping I could find an online site that would show them the same way that Wenlin did so I could cut and paste them into my documents.

I've decided to just print the pages directly from Wenlin then write in the characters on the printed pages in the size I want.

I have Wenlin 2.6 and downloaded the demo for 3.0, which allows me better fonts when I open my files in the 3.0 demo. Which version of Wenlin do you have?



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  • 5 months later...

I am looking for a database of the stroke order codes for chinese characters. I need a database or at least a text file of characters with their corresponding stroke codes. I don't need a program that illustrates writing the strokes like Wenlin--just the characters and numbers that describe the strokes.

ECode by EON Limited is good for inputting characters based on stroke order but I would like to have a code system that I can add to a database I am constructing.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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the strokes written in the proper order?

If you mean the way they're taught in schools in Taiwan, China, and Singapore, that stroke order is everywhere you look.

If you mean the calligraphic stroke order, the way kaishu has always been written until a few decades go (though it is still written in calligraphy class such), then

this is wrong


this is wrong


this is wrong


The other URLs so far listed on this thread either don't seem to have any information on stroke order or are items for sale and so I can't see what they have.

EVERY book for foreigners to learn Chinese charcters that I have ever seen has the stroke order wrong, though Rita Choy's books do get some of them right.

But it's the way the overwhelming majority of Taiwanese, Chinese, and Singaporeans write. Hong Kongers, what about you? Japanese write their characters the old-fashioned way: correctly, with a couple of exceptions.

I am aware of only two characters that are in dispute for kaishu (必 and 無), though those two do recur in other characters. Otherwise, the books and calligraphy teachers agree.

I've posted elsewhere on CF about this and given some examples. I will dig around for it and then edit this post adding the URL for that.

EDIT: Here's the URL I promised.


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  • 2 weeks later...

I've tried the links you guys suggested so far, but there's quite a few characters I can't find on http://www.csulb.edu/~txie/azi/page1.htm as well as http://www.usc.edu/dept/ealc/chinese/newweb/character_page.html. On http://www.ocrat.com/chargif/ almost every character I do a search for comes up with broken links.

For now I'm mainly trying to learn different foods and body parts. Any other links or free programs for stroke orders would be great!


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