Kanshudo Component Builder
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Draw a component:
Type a component or its name:
 
Choose from a list:
Change component list
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By default the Component Builder shows the most common Joyo kanji components (ie, components which are themselves Joyo kanji, or which are used in at least 3 other Joyo kanji). Select an alternative set of components below.



For details of all components and their English names, see the Component collections.
Kanshudo Component Builder Help
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For detailed instructions, see the Component builder how to guide.
To find any kanji, first try to identify the components it is made up of. Once you have identified any component, search for it in any of three ways:
  1. Draw it in the drawing area
  2. Type the name in the text area
  3. Look for it in the list
Example: look up 漢
  • Notice that 漢 is made of several components: 氵 艹 口 夫
  • Draw any of these components (one at a time) in the drawing area, and select it when you see it
  • Alternatively, look for a component in the list. 氵 艹 口 each have three strokes; 夫 has four strokes
  • If you know the meanings of the components, type any of them in the text area: water (氵), grass (艹), mouth (口) or husband (夫)
  • Keep adding components until you can see your kanji in the list of matches that appears near the top.
Kanshudo Component Builder Drawing Help
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The Kanshudo Component Builder can recognize any of the 416 components listed in the chart below the drawing area. Tips:
  • Draw a component in the center of the area, as large as you can
  • Try to draw the component as it appears in the kanji you're looking up
  • Don't worry about stroke order or number of strokes
  • Don't draw more than one component at a time
Not finding your component?
If you believe you've drawn your component correctly but the system is not recognizing it, please:
Let us know!

The Joy o' Kanji Essays

Welcome to Joy o’ Kanji, which will enable you to discover the joy of kanji! Below you’ll find introductions to detailed essays covering every aspect of each Jōyō kanji. Through loads of sample sentences and images containing the character in question, the essays give you the real-world experience you need so you can master kanji. You can download the essays in PDF form. After reading them, you can play games and use flashcards to work with the vocabulary and sentences from the essay.
If a Joy o' Kanji essay is available for a kanji, you will see this badge next to it in search results.
You can also find all kanji with essays available using the special search keyword jokessay:true, and if you know the Joy o' Kanji ID (the number under the kanji in the display below), you can use the special keyword jok:1009.
These essays come from our partner, Joy o' Kanji.
More info about Joy o' Kanji
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bustle
JOK: 1825
Find out how to say, “I was on the go all day,” “He is busy with fundraising,” “thanks to his efforts,” and “He ran down the road frantically.” Learn to read between the lines of this sentence: “He disobeyed his parents and ran away from his hometown.” And see how 奔 enables people to slip free of social mores, acting with wild abandon and even doing some “freewheeling” cooking!
flutter
JOK: 1826
The Japanese associate a fluttering flag with 翻, the kanji that heads off 翻訳 (translation). See what bridges the two concepts, as well as the idea of changing one’s mind, adapting a novel, dodging a tackle, rising in revolt, toying with someone, and doing a somersault! Find out how to say, “Everything has to be considered from another angle” and “This word does not translate well.”
flax; flux
JOK: 1829
This essay will be totally rad, man. That is, it's about 麻, which means "hemp" and can serve as the "hemp" radical. The essay presents Japanese terms for "marijuana" and other opiates, as well as "drug addiction," "torpor," "anesthetic," and "paralysis." Oh, and there's also talk of sesame seeds and brown-nosing.
polish
JOK: 1831
The definitions of 磨 present contradictions. Polishing is gentle, but grinding is harsh. With the versatile 磨, you can say you've brushed your teeth, scraped pans, worn out shoes, and improved your skills. This kanji helps form the word for "Daruma." Find out why this popular round doll has crane-shaped eyebrows, a blank eye, and connections to snow and fire, as well as goal setting.
again
JOK: 1835
Though 又 looks simple and has just one Joyo yomi, it's not so straightforward, as it can mean opposite things: "and" and "or." Mostly, it means "again," which also seems simple, but emotionally it's not. When things happen repeatedly, we have strong feelings, as we see in songs such as "When Will I See You Again?" or "I'll Never Love This Way Again." Because people often sing about repeating patterns in life, and because songs are inherently cyclical, I've found musical pairings for each nuance of 'again," much as a sommelier finds wine to accompany any given dish. You'll be tapping your toes and singing along as you read! You'll also learn about 又 as a radical.
erase
JOK: 1836
Find out everything you've wanted to know about matcha (powdered green tea) but were afraid to ask! See who first produced it and when, its role in the tea ceremony, and how matcha differs from a similar tea given for free at restaurants. Discover what people blend matcha with, from salt to beer! Also learn how 抹 relates to incense, whales, erasure, brushstrokes, and Denmark!
ridicule
JOK: 1837
Many 慢 terms involve pride. These words run the gamut from healthy self-regard (in a few cases) to pompous self-importance (much more of the time). However, 慢 also plays a role in 我慢 (がまん: patience), an incredibly positive quality that the Japanese revere. The essay explains how this is possible and examines various views on what 我慢 truly means in Japanese culture.
random
JOK: 1838
There's water in 漫! See why! Also learn why the "man-" of "manga" means "random" and what "manga" used to mean, as well as the history of manga. Discover terms for "yelling at someone for no good reason," "browsing," and other random acts. Also learn to talk about unrestrained speech, out-of-hand government spending, a pervasive smell, and a riot of cherry blossoms.
charming
JOK: 1839
Learn to say that you're attracted to a pile of money, a dress, a woman, opera, or even hornets! Find out how to say things like "Her smile attracts a lot of men," "I was attracted to her at first sight," "The audience was fascinated by his speech," and "The charm of Kyoto lies in the beauty of its old temples." This one should come in handy, too: "I think she's very attractive."
headland
JOK: 1840
Learn about the 16 extremities of the four main islands, and see why Japan has a whopping 5,503 lighthouses. Find out how a powerful novel and a shipwreck changed Japan and how another shipwreck bonded Japan and Turkey. Learn the various kanji for cape names, and see why the 山 radical in 岬 can be a misfit. Discover the locations of coral reefs in Japan and capes in your body!
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