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Lesson Transcript

Hi everyone.
Welcome to the Japanese Kanji video series.
In this lesson, you'll learn the "heart" radical.
Take a look at these kanji characters. Can you guess what they mean?
By the end of this lesson, you'll be able to grasp the meaning behind these kanji characters.
心, 忘, 思, 恋
In the previous lessons, we learned that kanji characters are made up of radicals—the building blocks of kanji.
These radicals give us tremendous clues to the meaning behind kanji characters.
Can you identify the common element in all of these kanji characters?
It's this part here.
This particular radical is called...
It's otherwise known as the "heart" radical. It's used in some of the most common of kanji characters. Let's take a look at it in more detail.
On its own, the "heart" radical looks like this.
We mentioned before that some radicals can be kanji on their own.
This radical is one such example.
The meaning behind this particular kanji, is "heart," "mind," or "spirit."
When this radical appears as a part of another kanji, like in these examples, the appearance changes slightly. When it's a component like this, it adds the meaning of "heart," "mind," or "spirit" to the entire kanji character.
If you can identify a radical in a kanji character, there's a good chance that you can guess the meaning of the character itself.
1. 忘
The first kanji has the "heart" radical, paired with this second character.
This second character is also a kanji in itself. This character means "to pass away, to disappear."
Here’s an easy way to remember this. When paired together, the "heart" radical and this character for "to pass away, to disappear," you can think of something that disappears in the heart. In other words, you don't care for it. So this kanji character means "to forget."
2. 思
The second kanji has the "heart" radical paired with this character, which looks like a window.
An easy way to remember this is imagining someone's heart at a window, "thinking" of something. So this kanji means "to think, to feel."
The last kanji example for the "heart" radical means "in love, to yearn for, to miss."
Can you see how we can determine the meaning of each kanji character by identifying the radicals in them?
By following this process, we can deduce the meaning of kanji characters we've yet to learn.
And the more radicals you learn, the easier it will be to learn even more kanji! For more ways to remember these characters and many more kanji examples that include the "heart" radical, go to JapanesePod101.com and check the Lesson Notes PDF.
Common positions
The "heart" radical will, in most cases, sit in the bottom-position and connect with another radical above it.
As seen in the original examples for "to forget," "to think, to feel," and "in love, to yearn for, to miss."
忘, 思, 恋
When the "heart" radical is in the bottom-position, it shrinks in size.
There are two other shape variations of the "heart" radical.
When the "heart" radical is used on the left-position, the shape changes into 忄, which is specifically called りっしんべん, as in these examples: 忙 and 怖
meaning "busy, occupied, restless" and "scary, to be frightened, fearful."
There is another shape of the "heart" radical when it sits in the bottom-position, which is 㣺 called specifically したごころ, as in 慕.
This kanji means "pining, to love dearly."
Okay. Now let's learn how to write this radical.
Stroke Order
Now let's take a look at the stroke order of the "heart" radical.
The "heart" radical is very simple—there are only four strokes.
When the radical is on its own, it looks like this:
The first stroke is a short diagonal line, going from right to left.
The second stroke is a long stroke that comes down from the top, then makes an "L" shape, and ends with a short stroke up.
Next, we make short stroke, almost like a check mark above our second stroke.
The fourth and final stroke is a short diagonal line, going from the left to right.
When this radical is a part of another kanji, it usually takes on the bottom-position, and the appearance is distorted a little.
It also only takes 4 strokes. The difference is that our third stroke is shallower. It's almost like a backwards check mark.
And that's it! You're done!
Common Readings
When the "heart" radical is on its own, the kanji can be read as...
In the case of the original examples, common readings are...
for the kanji meaning "to forget."
for the "to think, to feel" kanji. And...
for the "in love, to yearn for, to miss" kanji.
Lesson Review
In this lesson, you learned about the "heart" radical.
You also learned the kanji characters for "to forget," "to think, to feel," and or "in love, to yearn for, to miss," in which this radical appears.
It's most commonly found in the bottom-position, making it appear like this. 心
And it's written with four strokes—a short stroke on the left and a long swooping stroke in the middle. On top, we have a short stroke and finally another short stroke on the right.
In the next lesson, you'll learn about another common radical used in some of the most common and basic kanji characters, the "hand" radical. See you in the next lesson. Bye!


Review & Remember All Kanji from this Lesson

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Please to leave a comment.
😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

JapanesePod101.com Verified
July 28th, 2017 at 06:30 PM
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Do you know any other kanji with the Heart Radical 心?
Click here to download the FREE Kanji e-book
Click here to buy the Full Version Kanji e-book

Rafael G.
October 10th, 2020 at 06:03 AM
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On lesson 8, she said that the Word 言 radical is a combination of Mouth 口 + Heart 心. In this lession she don't comment this form. That form is only on that kanji? There is other kanjis here hearth appears on that way?

And Why 心 is different from the form showed on the video?

JapanesePod101.com Verified
August 16th, 2020 at 04:19 PM
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Hi J,

Thank you for your comment!

You are very imaginative and your suggestion will be helpful for others.

Please keep trying to find easy ways for you when learning kanji☺️

Hope you enjoy learning Japanese with us:)



Team JapanesePod101.com

August 10th, 2020 at 04:45 AM
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A small thing that could make this lesson easier.

When it comes to 思.

Coming from Remembering The Kanji (Still reading it.) the 田 part is described as brain/brains, unlike your description of "window".

I think it would be much easier for people to know the meaning was "to think" / "to feel" if they put brain + heart as the radicals in the kanji.

At least for me. It threw me off that you named it "window".

JapanesePod101.com Verified
May 24th, 2020 at 12:15 PM
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Hi Billy,

I'm not sure what you mean but thank you for studying with us!



Team JapanesePod101.com

May 1st, 2020 at 02:00 PM
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I can see 2 different writing of “こころ”, if you know what I mean

JapanesePod101.com Verified
August 23rd, 2019 at 05:22 PM
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Hello Eric,

Thank you for posting.

We’ll consider your feedback for our future development.

In the meantime, please check this series for more details and examples:


Let us know if you have any question.


Team JapanesePod101.com

August 15th, 2019 at 06:41 AM
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I should probably note that I was referring to the example words in the lesson notes!

August 15th, 2019 at 06:38 AM
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It is a little disappointing that the first ten radicals don't have examples like the last ten 😅

March 15th, 2019 at 08:42 PM
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Hello David,

Thanks for the cute emoji!❤️️

In case of any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.


Cristiane (クリスチアネ)

Team JapanesePod101.com

March 12th, 2019 at 08:52 PM
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