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A Question for Those with Elite Chinese


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From Pleco's《现代汉语规范词典》running on iPhone 3GS:

崴 wai3

1] 【名】...(irrelevant)

2] 【动】同"?"。现在一般写作"?"。

Note that there are only two definitions given; that means that 2) refers to the common usage as in "上山时不小心崴了脚". I can't imagine how there could be a character more common than "崴", and used in place of "崴", but that Pleco is unable to display.

What character could the "?" possibly be referring to?

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It should be a single character. This is a common problem with Pleco and the 《现代汉语规范词典》, where characters which have no standard encoding display as "?". But this pretty much only happens for extremely rare characters as well as components of characters. Since the definition claims that the "?" is actually more common than "崴", this is very strange.

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where characters which have no standard encoding display as "?"

Not quite true. The characters will have a standard encoding, but the font used by Pleco won't have this glyph.

But then why is it claimed that " 现在一般写作 '?' " ? I have never seen the character you are referring to, while “崴脚” is quite common.

My guess is that it probably originally refers to handwriting and how it should be written, whereas for a long time you wouldn't have been able to input this character on a computer (for whatever reason I guess it wasn't common enough to be in the GB2312 standard, and later only made it into the extended CJK glyphs of the Unicode standard), hence on computers people would use 崴 instead.

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Verily 向Imron同志学习 .... :mrgreen:




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FWIW, as a single character, MDBG doesn't even provide the wai3 pronunciation/meaning. However, the only word that uses it, 海參崴, has the wai3 pronunciation. However, TW MOE dictionary has the wei1 pronunciation for that word as well.

So I'm placing this into the "too elite for me" category and not think about it any more.

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It won't be easy. Renzheness. Heifenghood. Imron-nature - the paths are not for the faint-hearted. I know, I have trodden them all and turned back in shame and failure. I hope now only to point the way, to act as a mere signpost for braver and more determined pilgrims. I gesture towards distant classical tomes, to obscure Chinese exams, to . . to whatever the hell it is Imron's up to these days . . .and I say to you . . "Thattaway, kid. And good luck to you!"

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