北 (1)

[character] 北 (1)

“北(běi)” originally meant back, the oracle bone inscription illustrates two people rest against each other on their back. Due to the same pronunciation between back and the direction where sun never arrives, “北” was borrowed to mean north as well. After thousands of years, “北” is divided into two characters: 背 (bèi) takes over the meaning of back, while “北” losts its original meaning of back, but only the meaning of north left. (The original work is exhibited at “Chinese Charming” salon.)

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