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Lesson Transcript

Hi everyone.
Welcome to the Japanese Kanji video series.
In this lesson, you'll learn the "ten" 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.
First off, can you spot the radical that's common in all of these kanji characters?
It's this part here. It looks like a cross.
This particular radical is called...
じゅう、which literally means "ten" in Japanese.
The "ten" radical is used in some of the most common kanji characters. Let's take a look at it in more detail.
The "ten" radical means exactly that - ten! But it also means 'completeness', likely because Chinese uses a base ten number system.
As you can see, the "ten" radical is also a kanji character on its own.
From left to right, the first kanji means "ten," the second means "thousand," the third character means "noon," and fourth character means "old."
The second kanji has the "ten" radical at the bottom, paired with the "person" radical - the very first radical you learned. We covered it in lesson 2.
In the olden days, people aspired to live to 100. So if one person lived to 100, then the idea is that "10 human lifetimes" would equate to a "thousand," which is the meaning of this character: "thousand."
The third kanji means "noon." To remember this kanji, identify that the "ten" radical is at the bottom, and imagine that the top two strokes signify the number 2.
Ten plus two equals 12, and 12 means that it's "noon."
The origin of the fourth and final kanji is a little contested, but it has the "ten" radical on *top*, below it, is "mouth" - another useful radical which we will learn in the next lesson. It's thought that something that has *completed* its cycle and relating to the *mouth*, means that it's "old food," or food that has "dried out."
When something is dry, it hardens, and so this kanji carries a sense of something that is "old," "dry," or "hard."
Common positions
The "ten" radical will *usually* sit in the bottom position and connect with another radical above it.
It can *also* be in the crown position. When it's in this position, the bottom radical is likely to be the "mouth" radical, in which case, it adds that sense of "oldness," "dryness," or "hardness" that we talked about before.
Be careful when trying to identify this radical though, as there will often be crosses in many kanji due to the nature in which kanji characters are written. Some characters may look like they use the "ten" radical, but don't be fooled! Here's a small list of characters which *do* and *do not* use the "ten" radical:
半 “half”
卒 “to graduate”
卓 “table,” “eminent”
卑 “base,” “lowly,” “vile,” “vulgar,” “mean”
干 “dry”
生 “birth”
赤 “red”
走 “running”
士 “samurai”
Okay. Now let's learn how to write this radical.
Stroke Order
The "ten" radical is very simple, it only has two strokes.
The first stroke, is a horizontal one that goes from left to right. This horizontal stroke rises eeeever so slightly as it approaches the right side.
The second stroke, is a vertical stroke that starts at the top and goes down to the bottom, splitting the first horizontal stroke in half and forming a cross sign.
When this radical is part of another kanji, it'll usually connect to another radical at the vertical ends of the second stroke.
And that's it! You're done!
Common Readings
When the "ten" radical is on its own, the kanji can be read as...
ジュウ for the 'on' reading and とお for the 'kun' reading
And when the "ten" radical is part of another kanji, like in the original examples, common readings are...
for the kanji meaning "thousand."
for the kanji meaning "noon."
for the kanji meaning "old."
Lesson Review
In this lesson, you learned about the "ten" radical.
The "ten" radical looks like a cross.
It signifies the number 10 and the idea of "completeness."
You also learned the kanji characters for "ten," "thousand," "noon," and "old," in which this radical appears.
It's commonly found in the bottom or crown position.
And it's written with one horizontal stroke, and one vertical stroke.
In the next lesson, you'll learn about another common radical used in some of the most common and basic kanji characters, the "mouth" radical.
See you in the next lesson. Bye!


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

JapanesePod101.com Verified
June 10th, 2016 at 06:30 PM
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Do you know any other kanji with the Ten Radical 十?
Click here to download the FREE Kanji e-book
Click here to buy the Full Version Kanji e-book

JapanesePod101.com Verified
May 11th, 2021 at 06:20 PM
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There should be some kanjis that have the same meaning in Chinese and Japanese, I'm not entirely sure since I don't speak Japanese😅

Please let us know if you have any questions :)



Team JapanesePod101.com

May 7th, 2021 at 07:40 PM
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Dear JapanesePod101.com Team,

Does the Chinese Kanji have the same meaning to those of the Japanese ones'?


Vishnunarayana Kurup

JapanesePod101.com Verified
August 6th, 2020 at 02:14 PM
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Nope, the radical of 読 is 言 (called ごんべん)👍

Please let us know if you have any questions :)



Team JapanesePod101.com

August 1st, 2020 at 08:29 AM
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I have a question, does the kanji yo- as in yomu, to read have the ten radical? I can see the human legs radical and the mouth radical in this kanji.

JapanesePod101.com Verified
November 8th, 2019 at 04:38 AM
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Thank you for your question and that is a great question actually!

We use the on-yomi sounds for numbers. For example, 一(イチ)、二(ニ)、三(サン)etc. are all on-yomi, so for 十 as well, we use its on-yomi, which is ジュウ.

Please let us know if you have a further question :)



Team JapanesePod101.com

August 22nd, 2019 at 02:08 AM
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I am a little confused why we read 十 as ジュウ instead of とお, when it is by itself, and not compounded with other kanji. Shouldn’t we use the kun reading “とお” instead?

JapanesePod101.com Verified
June 6th, 2019 at 01:04 AM
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Konnichiwa ミア

Thank you for the posting.

Yes, ミア・ヴィクトリア is correct.

ビクトリアworks too but ビ doesn't correspond to Vi sounds. But ヴィ indicates pronunciation is not Bi but "Vi".

Keep up the good work ;)


Team JapanesePod101.com

March 24th, 2019 at 06:41 PM
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こにちは !

My first name is MiaVictoria. でも、「ミア」とよんでください !

Am I spelling it correctly if I spell it like this:

ミアビクトリア ?


JapanesePod101.com Verified
June 26th, 2018 at 09:34 PM
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Kaz-san, Chirstian-san,


I'm very sorry for the late reply!! Below, please see my responses to you :)

> Kez-san,

thank you for the interesting question!!

Actually, the kanji 午 is 'horse', not 'cow'. Long time ago, 24 hours of a day was mentioned using 12 animal symbols

(Asian zodiac), with each animal represented 2 hours. Horse comes as 7th animal, so the time used to be metioned

as 'before' or 'after' 'horse'. This is (at least as far as I know) the origin of 午前 and 午後 😅

> Christian-san,

radicals take different look, as you understood, and when it comes as 'crown position', it looks like an umbrella.

会 今 傘 etc.

I hope I understood your question correctly, and hope this helps! ;)

Natsuko (奈津子),

Team JapanesePod101.com

April 2nd, 2018 at 07:46 AM
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In the 2nd lesson about the person radical, it was only 亻when it was in the left position. In the crown position, it was presented as a squished version of 人. However, in 千, person is represented as it's written in the left position, but on top of 十.

Is there a rule to determine how 人 or 亻 supposed to look in the crown position?