Kanshudo Component Builder
Draw a component:
Type a component or its name:
Choose from a 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
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
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!

Grammar detail: あく, あける, ひらく, しめる, しまる, とじる etc.

あく, あける, ひらく, しめる, しまる, とじる etc.
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あく, あける, ひらく and some other forms all mean in some sense 'to open'. However, they cannot be used completely interchangeably. Since they can all be written with the same kanji 開, this can cause considerable confusion!
The first important distinction is between the transitive and intransitive forms. Transitive forms take an object: you 'open a door', whereas intransitive do not: 'the view opened before us'. As in English, each of these forms however, can be used both transitively and intransitively, so this distinction is not enough. However, in general あける and ひらく are used intransitively, whereas あく is usually transitive.
The next distinction is to do with the nature of what is being opened. The important issue here is
(physical space). When the action in question joins, creates or modifies physical spaces, both ひらく and あける can be used. However, opening a book, an umbrella does not affect 'space' in the same way, and あける would be the natural choice.
The final distinction is to do with the specific subject matter. Depending on the precise context, specific terms are acceptable or not, or carry slightly different meanings. For example, while ひらく and あける could both be used to mean 'open a business', ひらく would tend to refer to the founding of the business, whereas あける would refer to opening for the day. Additionally, the terms might be written with different kanji. For example, 開く tends to be used for opening of doors and windows, 空く tends to be used for opening up of vacancies, and 明く tends to be used for periods of time.
In the same way とじる, しめる and しまる all mean 'to close'. しめる and とじる are transitive, whereas しまる is intransitive.
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Kanji used in this grammar

カイ   あ to (be) open   あける    ひら to open (something)   ひらける to open out (eg view)   
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クウ   から empty   あ to be empty   あける to empty, vacate   そら sky   
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カン   ケン   あいだ interval, between   ま space, room   
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メイ   ミョウ   あかり light   あかるい bright   あかるむ to brighten   あからむ to become luminous (at dawn)   あきらか obvious   あかす to lay bare   あ to open   あける to empty   
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