láo to toil; labor; laborer

Made up of [ strength radical 19, cǎo grass; herb radical 140, cover; crown radical 14]


The original pictograph was a person laboring inside under the light of many fires. The original 'fires' have become 'grass' but maintain the implication of hard work

Related characters

Using : nán (male) dòng (to use) gōng (accomplishment) lìng (other) lì (to experience)
Using cǎo : huā (flower) chá (tea) yīng (flower) cài (vegetable) māo (cat) cǎo (grass) mǎn (to fill) yì (skill) kǔ (bitter) dǒng (to understand)
Using : xiě (write) ài (love)

Different tone

lǎo (venerable) lǎo (old)

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能者多劳 néng zhě duō láo Busy people are busy because they are capable
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Citation information: Chinasage, 'Chinese character láo 劳 to toil', , Web, http://www.chinasage.info/chars/fch_lao_to_toil.htm.

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