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black inkstick; black ink; Mexico
Kanji 1821

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.

Synopsis

Black ink has left an indelible mark on Japanese culture. People have used it to dye clothes, modify their bodies (e.g., tattoos), and censor information. Find out how the Japanese make solid and liquid ink and how they view brushstrokes as a mirror of the mind. Also learn about sumi-e (ink paintings) and enjoy gorgeous sumi-e from talented artists around the globe. 

Revision history:

Mar. 31, 2018: p. 12: Slightly revised the explanation of the Chinese proverb.

Jan. 27, 2018: 

pp. 3, 4, 15, 16, 21, 22: Fixed broken links. 

p. 11: Slightly revised a sentence to reflect that some people still use the tool known as a 墨壺.

p. 17 sidebar: Slightly revised the sample sentence translation.

June 22, 2013: p. 11: Changed a breakdown. Also changed one instance of 壷 to its variant, 壺, for consistency.

June 15, 2013: Originally published.

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