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  1. #1

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    My GF closed on a home yesterday and it has this Chinese(?) character on the door jamb. I looked for it, and half looks like "Fu" (for luck bottom character) but I cannot find the whole thing. Are there any Chinese Linguists here that can tell me what it means?

    Chinese characters next to door-asian_door_symbols-jpg
    Regards,

    Gary

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  3. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by GNAPPI View Post
    My GF closed on a home yesterday and it has this Chinese(?) character on the door jamb. I looked for it, and half looks like "Fu" (for luck bottom character) but I cannot find the whole thing. Are there any Chinese Linguists here that can tell me what it means?Chinese characters next to door-asian_door_symbols-jpg
    Think the bottom character is Kyu
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  4. #3

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    Thought so.


  5. #4

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    My wife was born in China and lived the first 18 years of her life there. She says it’s not Chinese, but perhaps Japanese

  6. #5

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    Just an ancient curse, nothing to worry about.

  7. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop View Post
    Just an ancient curse, nothing to worry about.
    LOL!

    My advice is get it tattooed on your left shoulder blade and post it on FB and Instagram. Then you’ll find out what it really says.
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  8. #7

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    Seriously, I tried writing these characters into the google translate app on my iPad using a stylus, and in both Chinese and Japanese it translated as ‘urine’!

    It did alter the characters a bit to the nearest ‘shape’ it could recognise, but it didn’t make any difference in Chinese or Japanese (I believe they both use some of the same characters).

    (I’m sure it doesn’t mean that really!)

    Chinese characters next to door-169cbf0c-5eac-4315-97fe-a9ba7e557bb7-jpg

  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop View Post
    ...(I believe they both use some of the same characters)
    There are some similar ones, but the meanings are different. Both are very contextual languages as well. Take it from my wife, a native speaker of Mandarin and Cantonese (there is only one written Chinese language though) that these are not Chinese characters.

  10. #9
    I asked a Chinese coworker of mine:

    "yes, I can confirm they are Chinese writing. But the bottom character is part of a chinese character that normally doesn't appear on its own. I might guess it is Japanese, but I am not sure

    but, if you put the bottom character at the left of the top one, they make a chinese character meaning fortune"

    This looks quite similar to the photo above: Chinese idiom: ???, Fortune, Prosperity, Longevity

    https://previews.123rf.com/images/simplyvector/simplyvector1509/simplyvector150900040/45911501-chinese-characters-fu-lu-shou.jpg


    Chinese character 'Lu' means prosperity… Stock Photo 128330939 - Avopix.com

  11. #10

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    This one seems about right, given that it's a door decoration. And I think it's read from bottom up, isn't it? That would make sense. 'Lu' for prosperity.

    Chinese characters next to door-avopix-128330939-jpg

  12. #11

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    I believe the whole thing is meant to be regarded as one single character (I have learned quite a bit about Chinese characters this afternoon!), so you can’t read it in two parts in the way it has been written on the doorframe.

    Maybe the person who did it couldn’t fit the design onto the vertical doorframe, so split it in half (not realising the Chinese character should not be written that way).

    But who knows, maybe it’s allowed on doorframes!

  13. #12

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    I suspect that, like with a lot of tattoos in North America, that the person who did the decoration had no idea what he was doing, or the resultant confusion he would create. So far, we have evidence from 2 native Chinese speakers (and readers) that this design is effectively meaningless if read by a Chinese person. Perhaps someone with a Japanese friend might care to chime in, as some characters are shared between the 2 written languages.

    Btw, I asked another Chinese friend today about this who speaks Mandarin, Cantonese as well as a Fujian dialect. She wrinkled her brow at it as well.

  14. #13

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    Well, I widened the group of Chinese speakers I have asked about this. I’m up to about 7 now. The last ones just laughed. If it’s meant to be Chinese, it’s meaningless.

  15. #14

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    Symbols?I thought you meant a couple extras from a Jackie Chan film.
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  16. #15

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    I guess the previous owners are not of Far East Asian descent?

    The character appears to have been split with its radical placed below the main character.

    More than you want to know about Lu:

    ????|????|??“?”??????
    Last edited by Jabberwocky; 10-27-2019 at 04:49 AM.

  17. #16

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    My wife is a very talented Japanese translator (if you have any user guides for Japanese musical instruments or pro audio gear, there's a fair chance she translated them into English).

    She says these characters are definitely not Japanese. To her, they appear to be Chinese. She can decipher some Chinese characters, but she can't read this.

    She did say if it was on the front door jamb, it was possibly the name of the household, or an abbreviation of their name.

    All just fyi. Good luck in your quest.

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D View Post
    Thought so.

    Actually, it is Folk You and Folk Me but you can't make a racist joke out of that...

  19. #18

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    The mystery was solved by Invisible Pink Unicorn in post no. 9 as far as I’m concerned.

    Actually the OP half solved it himself if you read his post again.

  20. #19

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    When a skinny Asian girl with long matted hair obstructing her face, comes climbing out of the TV, you will find out the meaning of those symbols, but by then, it will be too late...

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop View Post
    The mystery was solved by Invisible Pink Unicorn in post no. 9 as far as I’m concerned.

    Actually the OP half solved it himself if you read his post again.
    If multiple native speakers of the language cannot read it, it’s meaningless. A well meaning (probably western) designer added this, not knowing what they were doing.

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by krusty View Post
    A well meaning (probably western) designer added this, not knowing what they were doing.
    It's quite possible. Maybe someone showed a sign-maker the 'Lu' symbol and he/she threw together something that more or less represented it and looked nice on a Western door.

    On the other hand, the Chinese are quite capable of making artistic versions of their Lu signs:

    Chinese characters next to door-53673f35a566d3420b333829d7e3c89d-jpgChinese characters next to door-index-jpgChinese characters next to door-index-jpg

  23. #22

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    Chinese characters next to door-trucker-hat-jpg

    Reminded me of this cap I saw once......

  24. #23

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    My wive says it’s just a name. “Look Lee” in Cantonese.

  25. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Franklin52 View Post
    My wive says it’s just a name. “Look Lee” in Cantonese.
    It makes sense. It might be a Cantonese transliteration of an English surname: "Lockley", for example, might be transliterated to "Luk Lee" with auspicious Chinese characters chosen. In Mandarin, those two characters are read out as "Lu Shi".