Question about Devera

David Silberstein davids at kithrup.com
Tue Mar 4 13:40:34 PST 2003

On Tue, 4 Mar 2003, Ruhlen, Rachel Louise (UMC-Student) wrote:

>Didn't the chinese try to simplify their language? And it didn't work
>so well, at least the author of whatever I was reading about it
>seemed to have that impression. 

Warning:  I am not an expert on Chinese writing systems.

When I spoke to someone who *does* know Chinese, he explained that
Traditional Chinese has more information in the character than
Simplified Chinese, which means that even if the character is
unfamiliar, you can guess approximately what it refers to.  The
example he gave was that all ideographs that refer to fish have the
"fish" radical (a radical is a sub-component of an entire ideograph) 
in Traditional Chinese, whereas in Simplified Chinese, this radical is
changed or lacking.