měi beautiful

Made up of [ yáng sheep; goat radical 123, big; great; large; very radical 37]


Represents a combination of 'large' and 'sheep' possibly aluding to a peaceful disposition
Number of strokes 9

Related characters

Using yáng : qún (group) xiān (fresh)
Using : tiān (sky) tài (too) qìng (celebrate) fū (husband) tóu (head) mò (do not) shí (real) shī (to lose) qí (strange) yāng (center)

Different tone

méi (have not) mèi (younger sister)

< Previous méi Next mèi >


Sound file kindly provided by shtooka.net under a Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike License

stroke order for 美
Stroke order for character 美, kindly provided under Wikimedia creative commons license


十全十美 shí quán shí měi Perfection; Faultless


美国 měi guó America



Frogs and toads are valued in China because they keep down insect pests on crops. In some regions their name is similar to qián ?money, coin? and this has given them an assoication with good fortune and luck.

Canton trade

From 1685 until 1840 Guangzhou (called Canton by the foreigners) was the only place in China that trade with foreign ships could be made. Foreigners were not allowed to set foot on the mainland, only Shamian island and then on restricted days of the year. The corrupt Cohongs who acted as middlemen made huge profits out of the trade. The system was forcibly shutdown by the British in the Opium Wars.
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