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Korean road signs and Chinese characters

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Do South Korean road signs have Chinese characters (or hanja as they call it) on them? Heard from a friend that they were getting Chinese characters onto their signs, but not sure how prevalent it actually is. Anyone been to Korea lately?

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I was there a couple of years ago after watching a few K drama. I remember clearly that there were large road signs in Hanguel, traditional Chinese (not sure if those were regarded as Hanja) and simplified Chinese at the 雪嶽山 area.

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Along with skylee's observation, the person who wrote post #13 in this thread http://www.chinese-forums.com/index.php?/topic/35-traditional-simplified-characters&page=2 also says he has seen Hanja on signs in Seoul.

I think South Korea has more Hanja characters used in public than North Korea. North Korea supposedly banned all Chinese characters following the division of the peninsula.

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Currently there is a plan to replace the Hangul letters on the sign at the main entrance to Kyongbok Palace in Seoul with a sign written in Hanja, in a king's calligraphy.


One reason why many people are opposed to the change is because Chinese characters are read from right to left, while modern Korean is read from left to right.

Were the roads signs written in Chinese read from right to left?

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Now chinese is written from left to right (but of couse it can be written vertically).

But I think in the past characters were rarely arranged horizontally and when they were, they were arranged from right to left. Take a look at the 正大光明匾 in 乾清宮 in the Forbidden City.

And also this ->

Right-to-left horizontal writing

Right-to-left horizontal writing is still seen in Japan, China, and Korea, in such places as signs, on the right-hand side of vehicles, and on the right-hand side of stands selling food at festivals. It is also used to simulate archaic writing, for example in reconstructions of old Japan for tourists, and it is still found in the captions and titles of some newspapers. However, the left-to-right direction is now dominant in all three languages for horizontal writing: this is due partly to the influence of English, and partly to the increased use of computerized typesetting and word processing software, most of which does not directly support right-to-left layout of East Asian languages.

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In Taiwan, one newspaper (Guoyu ribao, or what was it called) writes in every possible direction. I saw articles with the headline right to left, and the article left to right, or the other way around, all horizontal.

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