Writing Chinese with Ease

Introduction

Writing Chinese with Ease is a separate book, not included in the Course itself.

The aim of the book is to initiate the beginner in the art of writing Chinese, using the 800 most common characters of modern Chinese.

Their introduction follows the progression of the 105 lessons of Chinese with Ease but it is also possible to use the book independently. In order to satisfy the needs of the greatest number of students, the explanations can also be followed by those who do not necessarily  wish to learn to speak Chinese.

We hope that the explanations in the introduction, the list of radicals and the appendices will provide you with the material for acquiring a sound basic knowledge of Chinese writing, of the best aesthetic quality! Enjoy your study!

At the end of the volume, the bilingual Index of characters will refer you to the lesson where each character is introduced. This character index supplements the word index at the end of Volumes One and Two of Chinese with Ease. Taken together, they form a basic Chinese-English dictionary.

Presentation

This method of learning to write the characters will help you to complete your study of the Chinese language: the object of volumes 1 and 2 of Chinese with Ease being spoken Chinese. Each character is presented stroke by stroke, and all the basic characters introduced during the 105 lessons have been analysed in this way.

Before beginning the exercises, it is a good idea to read the Introduction to Writing again (pages XVIII to XXIV in volume 1), as a reminder of the basic rules of Chinese writing.

At each stage in your apprenticeship, you must devote a certain amount of time to the memorization of the new characters. The best way to do this is to use the age-old method of ‘lines’: on calligraphy paper with large spaces, copy each character a least ten times, or more if you find it hard to remember, until you easily write it from memory. At the end of each lesson, test yourself on it and on the preceding lessons, to make sure that you remember all the characters and that you can write them all with the strokes in the right order.

If you have forgotten the meaning of a character, you can refer to the corresponding lesson, where it was introduced for the first time.

For each lesson, only the new characters are analysed stroke by stroke. You may find that one of the characters in a word or an expression has already been studied in combination with other characters, with a different meaning. In that case, the stroke by stroke analysis is not repeated. You can refer to the index to find the lesson number where the character first appeared.

A good way to test your progress is to check that you know the meaning of each character, that you can pronounce it correctly and that you can use it in a bisyllabic word or in an expression or sentence from the corresponding dialogue.

You will not find any lesson numbered with multiples of seven (7, 14, 21, etc.). These are the revision lessons in Chinese with Ease, they refer to the six previous lessons and do not include any new characters.

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Writing Chinese with Ease: The Characters Stroke-By-Stroke (v. 3)

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