'Den ' chosen as the kanji best representing 2012 by 'g' Arthur & his Damsels.



as the kanji best representing 2012 in


被災地【ひさいち】(n) area struck (by some disaster), location of a disaster
被災者【ひさいしゃ】(n) victim of (some disaster)
大震災【だいしんさい】(n) (1) great earthquake (disaster), (2) (abbr) Great Kanto earthquake of 1923, (P)
東日本大震災【ひがしにほんだいしんさい】(n) Tohoku earthquake (March 11, 2011), Sendai earthquake
震災【しんさい】(n) (1) earthquake disaster, (2) (abbr) Great Kanto Earthquake (1923), (P)
災害【さいがい】(n) calamity, disaster, misfortune, (P)
防災【ぼうさい】(n) disaster prevention, (P)








漢字変換 (kanji henkan) facilitates the input of Japanese kanji, and saves it from extinction. Proof is that The Agency for Cultural Affairs can afford increasing the number of 常用漢字 (jouyou kanji) from 1,945 to 2,136. What a cultural luxury!

I imagine most Japanese can read jouyou kanji as used in compounds (熟語) but handwriting them is more challenging. No problem, all of us, gaijin included, will be able to keyboard-input the new jouyou [ウツ うっ(する) ふさ(ぐ) しげ(る)]. This 29-stroke character, in tune with the state of the world affairs, signifies depression, low spirits.常用漢字.com by popular votation (King Art and his damsels) chose it Kanji of the Year 2010.

Let's decompose it:
缶 冖 鬯 彡
tree, wood, timber もく (1) Thursday, (2) wood (first of the five elements)

かん (ateji) can, tin かま boiler
ほとぎ earthenware jar for carrying water, (2) water vessel used for a baby's first bath

wa-shaped crown radical

かおりぐさ, ちょう (fragrant) herbs (rad. 192)

three; hair ornament; short hair or fur radical