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Evolution of Written Language: Chinese Characters

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Adrienne Yu

on 31 May 2013

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Transcript of Evolution of Written Language: Chinese Characters

Chinese Characters
Adrienne Yu and Kori Kang Evolution of Written Language How did this specific written language change over time? Pictograms evolved over time to change from pictures of objects to more structured symbols that represented objects
Oracle Bone Script (1500-1000 BCE) --> Greater and Lesser Seal (1100-700 BCE) --> Clerkly Script (221 BCE-220 CE) --> Standard ("Traditional") Script (220 CE) --> Simplified Script (1949)
Running Script and Grass Script First used as pictogram to mark possessions and to show ownerships (3,500 years ago, Shang Dynasty)
They are not truly the Chinese characters, but they do resemble the early Chinese characters
Earliest Chinese language in oracle bone scripts (1500-100BC) What use was Chinese originally put to? Who used this language? Evolution of the Chinese language demonstrates the change and growth of China as a country
Provided a common, structured language with which to communicate
Able to clearly mark possession, communicate between each other, and document knowledge for the next generation (collective learning) How does this written language's use by humans mark a new threshold of increasing complexity? What did it allow humans to accomplish? Early written Chinese characters are hard, but easier than other ancient languages to decipher
Starting from the pictogram, Chinese characters evolved
Decipher ancient Chinese by tracing back time How have modern day historians learned the meaning of this early written language? http://history.cultural-china.com/en/51H2941H11096.html This picture shows the evolution from the original pictogram to the modern traditional Chinese character http://factsanddetails.com/china.php?itemid=124 This picture shows how different words look in each of the Chinese scripts. http://www.ancientscripts.com/chinese.html http://connectshore.com/2012/07/13/book-review-oracle-bones/ http://factsanddetails.com/china.php?itemid=124
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