There is a kanji quiz called “Kanji Quiz for working adults” put out by Baila. The quizzes are not easy. Almost all kanji are certainly recognizable (認識できる ninshikidekiru), but how you read them is very difficult.

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Today’s kanji was 仄々. I certainly was one of many that could not read this kanji. It is read as honobonoto (ほのぼの), meaning “dimly lit” or “heartwarming”. We use hiragana when we write ほのぼの almost all the time. Partly because hiragana can add soft feeling, and partly because 仄々 is not commonly used in writing, although 仄 is one of the commonly used kanjis (常用漢字 joyokanji). If you can type Japanese on your keyboard, type “honoka.” You may get ほのか and 仄か. 仄 (hono) attaches to verbs or adjectives indicates “faintly noticeable” as in 仄暗い – faintly dark (honogurai). But when you type honobono, you most likely get ほのぼの or ホノボノ。

How about 滴々? You have seen 滴 (shizuku or teki, a drop) as in 水滴 (waterdrop, suiteki) 点滴(intravenous drip, tenteki.)You get the idea. So how do you think 滴々is read? Tekiteki? The answer is ぽたぽた (potapota)- onomatopoeia (擬音語 giongo) of water drops. 滴 sure is not read ぽた though. By typing ぽたぽた, you will get ポタポタ but not 滴々. You will need to learn this kind of kanji reading by reading literature (文学 bungaku).

Image by rony michaud from Pixabay

〜に集る is the next kanji. You may have seen 集める (atsumeru, to collect, to gather) or 写真集 (shashinshu, collection of photos). Then is it atsuru? Shuru? It is read as 〜ni takaru, meaning to sponge off〜.

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