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Grass - Cao - Chinese Character Profile

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The Chinese character 艸 (cǎo) means grass. It is a pictograph showing two shoots of grass.

This character is relatively uninteresting, as it not an element of any other Chinese character. The radical form of this character, however, is used in many characters that are related to plants. The radical form is a horizontal stroke with two small vertical strokes: 艹. When used as an element of a more complex character, it always appears at the top of the character.

Here are some examples of characters which incorporate this radical:

  • 芃 – péng – luxuriant growth
  • 芙 – fú – lotus
  • 芟 – shān – cut down; mow; scythe
  • 芥 – jiè – mustard
  • 芬 – fēn – fragrant
  • 花 – huā – flower; blossom
  • 芽 – yá – bud; sprout
  • 苔 – tái – moss
  • 苪 – bǐng – bright; splendid
  • 英 – yīng – English; brave
  • 蘋 / 苹 – píng – apple
  • 葉 / 叶 – yè – leaf; page
  • 莊 / 庄 – zhuāng – farm; village
  • 薔薇 / 蔷薇 – qiáng wéi – rose
  • 蘑 – mó – mushroom
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