mortar; millstone; hand mill; "mortar" radical
Thank you for visiting this Character Home Page. Below you'll find a synopsis of the essay. If you wish to read the full text, the PDF of the essay is available for purchase to the right.
Newly added to the Joyo set (probably because it's a radical), 臼 gives us an entry point into the earthy world of grinding crops. Through 臼 we learn about the mortar and pestle, the original (and best?) way of making mochi (and the basis for a saying about how men and women need each other). The essay also introduces medical terms, including one for "molar." After all, "mortars" in the mouth grind food!
July 17, 2015:
p. 1: Added "'mortar' radical" as a definition in the Character Profile.
p. 5: Changed a link from one Wikipedia page to another.
Apr. 5, 2013: Fixed a dead link on p. 10 and a typo on p. 10.
Sept. 19, 2012: Added 7 photos to pp. 9 and 12–14.