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See also:
U+500B, 個
CJK UNIFIED IDEOGRAPH-500B

[U+500A]
CJK Unified Ideographs
[U+500C]

Translingual[edit]

Stroke order
個-order.gif

Han character[edit]

(radical 9, +8, 10 strokes, cangjie input 人田十口 (OWJR), four-corner 26200, composition)

Derived characters[edit]

References[edit]

  • KangXi: page 107, character 17
  • Dai Kanwa Jiten: character 758
  • Dae Jaweon: page 228, character 2
  • Hanyu Da Zidian (first edition): volume 1, page 178, character 3
  • Unihan data for U+500B

Chinese[edit]

trad. /
simp.

Glyph origin[edit]

Phono-semantic compound (形聲, OC *kaːls): semantic  (person) + phonetic  (OC *kaːs).

Etymology[edit]

The semantics may have developed along the grammaticalisation process "bamboo stalk" () > "piece, item" > "classifier for every category of noun" > "possessive particle, generic particle". If so, it would then possibly be cognate with 竿 (OC *kaːn, “bamboo, rod”). Compare Tibetan མཁར་བ (mkhar ba), འཁར་བ ('khar ba, walking stick, staff) and Thai ก้าน (gâan, stem, stalk).

Pronunciation[edit]


Note:
  • ge - classifier;
  • gě - colloquial, used in 自個兒.
  • Cantonese
  • Gan
  • Hakka
  • Jin
  • Min Bei
  • Min Dong
  • Note:
    • gó̤ - literary;
    • gá - classifier.
  • Min Nan
  • Note:
    • kò - literary (including classifier for months);
    • ê/gê - generic classifier;
    • ê - possessive particle (usually written as ).
    Note:
    • go6 - literary;
    • gai5 - classifier, or particle introducing the object of the verb (equivalent to );
    • gai7 - possessive particle.
  • Wu
    • (Shanghainese)
      • Wiktionary: geq (T5); hheq (T5); eq (T4); ku (T2)
      • Sinological IPA (key): /ɡ̊əʔ¹²/, /ɦəʔ¹²/, /əʔ⁵⁵/, /kv̩ʷ³⁴/
  • Note:
    • 5geq ~ 5hheq ~ 4eq - classifier or particle;
    • 2ku - literary.
  • Xiang

    Rime
    Character
    Reading # 1/1
    Initial () (28)
    Final () (94)
    Tone (調) Departing (H)
    Openness (開合) Open
    Division () I
    Fanqie
    Reconstructions
    Zhengzhang
    Shangfang
    /kɑH/
    Pan
    Wuyun
    /kɑH/
    Shao
    Rongfen
    /kɑH/
    Edwin
    Pulleyblank
    /kaH/
    Li
    Rong
    /kɑH/
    Wang
    Li
    /kɑH/
    Bernard
    Karlgren
    /kɑH/
    Expected
    Mandarin
    Reflex
    BaxterSagart system 1.1 (2014)
    Character
    Reading # 1/1
    Modern
    Beijing
    (Pinyin)
    Middle
    Chinese
    ‹ kaH ›
    Old
    Chinese
    /*kˁa[r]-s/
    English piece, item

    Notes for Old Chinese notations in the Baxter–Sagart system:

    * Parentheses "()" indicate uncertain presence;
    * Square brackets "[]" indicate uncertain identity, e.g. *[t] as coda may in fact be *-t or *-p;
    * Angle brackets "<>" indicate infix;
    * Hyphen "-" indicates morpheme boundary;

    * Period "." indicates syllable boundary.
    Zhengzhang system (2003)
    Character
    Reading # 1/1
    No. 4208
    Phonetic
    component
    Rime
    group
    Rime
    subdivision
    1
    Corresponding
    MC rime
    Old
    Chinese
    /*kaːls/
    Notes

    Definitions[edit]

    1. piece; item; individual
      /   ―  rén  ―  an individual; personal
      /   ―    ―  individuality
    2. size; height
      /   ―  zi  ―  height; stature
      /   ―  r  ―  size
    3. separate; respective; separately; individually
      /   ―  bié  ―  individual; separate; some; a couple of
    4. single; alone
    5. (dialectal Hakka, dialectal Min, dialectal Wu) one
    6. The generic classifier for people or for things lacking specific classifiers.
      /   ―  rén  ―  one person
      /   ―  měi rén  ―  every person; everyone
      問題 / 问题  ―  Wǒ yǒu yī wèntí.  ―  I have a question.
      / [Taiwanese]  ―  nn̄g ê lâng [Pe̍h-ōe-jī]  ―  two people
      屋企先生邊度 [Guangzhou Cantonese, trad.]
      屋企先生边度 [Guangzhou Cantonese, simp.]
      Zyu6 hoeng2 nei5 uk1 kei5 go3 can4 sin1 saang1 hai6 bin1 dou6 jan4 lai4 gaa3? [Jyutping]
      Where is that Mr. Chan who lives at your house from?
    7. Classifier for hours and months.
      鐘頭 / 钟头  ―  zhōngtóu  ―  one hour
      /   ―  jiǔ yuè  ―  nine months
      / [Taiwanese]  ―  saⁿ goe̍h [Pe̍h-ōe-jī]  ―  three months
    8. Alternative classifier, for nouns having specific classifiers. Often colloquial and regional. Usage varies greatly between different topolects.
      學校 / 学校  ―  xuéxiào  ―  one school
      / [Guangzhou Cantonese]  ―  jat1 go3 zeng2 [Jyutping]  ―  a well
      / [Guangzhou Cantonese]  ―  jat1 go3 fong4-2 [Jyutping]  ―  a room
    9. (Cantonese, Hakka, Teochew, Puxian Min, Wenzhou Wu) Classifier for money: yuan, dollar; buck
      / [Cantonese]  ―  saam1 go3 gau2 hou4 gau2 [Jyutping]  ―  three dollars and ninety-nine cents
      / [Cantonese]  ―  baat3 go3 luk6 [Jyutping]  ―  eight dollars and sixty cents
      檸檬 [Cantonese, trad.]
      柠檬 [Cantonese, simp.]
      go3 bun3 sap6 zek3 ning4 mung4-1 [Jyutping]
      ten lemons for a dollar and a half
      / [Hakka]  ―  sâm ke ngiùn [Pha̍k-fa-sṳ]  ―  three dollars
      / [Teochew]  ―  no6 geng1 ngou6 gai5 [Peng'im]  ―  two catties for five dollars
      / [Teochew]  ―  gai5 ngeng5 san1 liab8 [Peng'im]  ―  three for a buck
    10. (Cantonese, slang) Classifier for money: ten thousand yuan, dollars, etc.
      / [Cantonese]  ―  Keoi5 caang1 jan4 sap6 go3. [Jyutping]  ―  He owes them a hundred grand.
    11. (Mandarin, colloquial) Particle, placed between a verb and numbers, showing that the following numbers are approximate, not accurate.
      一下公里不在話下 [MSC, trad.]
      一下公里不在话下 [MSC, simp.]
      Tā yīxià pǎo liǎng sān gōnglǐ dōu bùzàihuàxià. [Pinyin]
      Running two or three kilometers in one go is a piece of cake for him.
      他們 [MSC, trad.]
      他们 [MSC, simp.]
      Tāmen liǎ jiù chà yī liǎng suì. [Pinyin]
      The age difference between them is only about one or two years.
    12. (Mandarin, Cantonese, colloquial) Particle, placed between a verb and its object or complement, adding a sense of ease, swiftness and one-offness to the action.
      休息休息 [MSC, trad.]
      休息休息 [MSC, simp.]
      chī fàn, xǐ ge zǎo, xiūxi xiūxi [Pinyin]
      have a meal, take a shower and have some rest
      我們昨天近況 [MSC, trad.]
      我们昨天近况 [MSC, simp.]
      Wǒmen zuótiān jiàn le miàn, liáo le liáo jìnkuàng. [Pinyin]
      We met yesterday, and chatted about how we've been recently.
    13. (Mandarin, colloquial) Particle used after (xiē).
      那些現在回憶起來還是記憶猶新 [MSC, trad.]
      那些现在回忆起来还是记忆犹新 [MSC, simp.]
      Nàxiē nián de shì xiànzài huíyì qǐlái háishì jìyìyóuxīn. [Pinyin]
      It feels like yesterday when I reminisce about those stories in the past.
    14. (dialectal Mandarin) Particle used in some time-related words.
      今兒 / 今儿  ―  jīnrge  ―  (dialectal) today
    15. (literary or Wu, Xiang, Gan, dialectal Cantonese, dialectal Min) (= ) this; that
      / [Shanghainese]  ―  this person
      鴨子 [Shanghainese, trad.]
      鸭子 [Shanghainese, simp.]
      This duck hasn't been cooked long enough for it to become tender.
    16. (Cantonese, Wu) Word-initial particle, serving as the definite article.
      今朝為啥 [Shanghainese, trad.]
      今朝为啥 [Shanghainese, simp.]
      Why hasn't that guy come today?
    17. (dialectal Cantonese, Hakka, Wu, Teochew, Hainanese) Possessive particle. Equivalent to Mandarin (de).
      (ge3) (Cantonese), (kaq) (Wu), (ê) (Hokkien)
      小囡 / 小囡 [Shanghainese]  ―  my child
      客家精神 / 客家精神 [Hakka]  ―  hak-kâ ke chîn-sṳ̀n [Pha̍k-fa-sṳ]  ―  the Hakka spirit
    18. (dialectal) Sentence-final declarative, affirmative, or prohibitive particle. Equivalent to Mandarin (de), (le).
      標語 [Shanghainese, trad.]
      标语 [Shanghainese, simp.]
      I didn't write that slogan.
    19. (often dialectal) Emphatic particle between a pronoun and a noun, usually to highlight some negative quality of the person.
      笨蛋 / 笨蛋  ―  bèndàn!  ―  You idiot!
      / [Cantonese]  ―  Keoi5 go3 jan4 hou2 laan5. [Jyutping]  ―  He/she is such a sluggard.

    Usage notes[edit]

    • For Min Nan, Taiwan's Ministry of Education recommends for the general classifier ê and for the possessive particle to differentiate them from ().
    • For Hakka, Taiwan's Ministry of Education recommends for the possessive particle.
    • In Cantonese, when used for "yuan/dollar", is usually only used when followed by cents.

    Synonyms[edit]

    Compounds[edit]

    Descendants[edit]

    Sino-Xenic ():
    • Japanese: () (ko)
    • Korean: (, gae)
    • Vietnamese: ()

    Others:

    • Vietnamese: cái

    Japanese[edit]

    Kanji[edit]

    (grade 5 “Kyōiku” kanji)

    Readings[edit]

    • Go-on: (ka)
    • Kan-on: (ka)
    • Tō-on: (ko, Jōyō)

    Counter[edit]

    () (-ko

    1. item, article, thing
      あの(えだ)(さくら)()(じゅう)()()だけあります。
      Ano eda ni sakuranbo ga jūni-ko dake arimasu.
      There are only twelve cherries on that branch.

    Usage notes[edit]

    This is the most generic counter in Japanese. It can be used to count just about anything.

    See also[edit]

    Japanese number-counter combinations for () (ko)
    1 2 3 4 5
    (いっ)() (ikko) ()() (niko) (さん)() (sanko) (よん)() (yonko) ()() (goko)
    6 7 8 9 10
    (ろっ)() (rokko) (なな)() (nanako)
    (しち)() (shichiko)
    (はっ)() (hakko) (きゅう)() (kyūko) (じゅっ)() (jukko)
    (じっ)() (jikko)
    100 1,000 10,000 How many?
    (ひゃっ)() (hyakko) (せん)() (senko) (いち)(まん)() (ichimanko) (なん)() (nanko)

    Korean[edit]

    Hanja[edit]

    (eum (gae))

    1. a piece
    2. a unit
    3. an item.

    Vietnamese[edit]

    Han character[edit]

    : Hán Nôm readings: , cái

    1. generic classifier

    References[edit]