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nail, claw, talon; hoof; "claw" radical
Kanji 2071

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Synopsis

Delving into the 爪 kanji introduces you to rich idiomatic expressions about a wide range of things: following in people's footsteps, not showing off, preparing to defeat opponents, saving money (sometimes to extremes), and bearing scars after traumas. This new addition to the Joyo set is a prevalent radical that's useful to know, but the variants can be hard to recognize unless you've learned what they are.

Revision history:

Feb. 12, 2021: 

  • p. 1: Added “unused now” after the 呉音 (ショウ). 
  • p. 2: Etymology Box: Added the new Henshall etymology.
  • p. 3: Slightly modified the sample sentence about the hawk.
  • p. 13: Updated definitions of some kanji featuring 爪 as a radical.
  • p. 13: Added a link to the Kanshudo games.
  • pp. 14 and 15: Slightly altered the 2nd question of the Verbal Logic Quiz, and significantly changed the answer, greatly simplifying the discussion.

July 6, 2016:

  • p. 10: Changed the yomi of 琴爪 (koto pick on a ring) from きんそう to ことづめ.
  • pp. 10 and 11: Removed 3 broken links

May 11, 2012: Originally published.

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Kanji PDF
Mini Profile
JOYO ON-YOMI
None
JOYO KUN-YOMI
つめ, つま
STROKES4
RADICAL爪 (87: claw)
JLPTN1
HALPERN-/2605
HENSHALL-/1739
SPAHN0a4.9