The Chinese Character Cháo 朝

The Chinese character cháo 朝. (Image: Brad T./Vision Times)
The Chinese character cháo 朝. (Image: Brad T./Vision Times)

A new dynasty marks the dawn of a new era. The Chinese character 朝, pronounced cháo (or “ciao” in Italian), stands for morning or dawn. It is also the character for dynasty.

Cháo 朝, which originates from 卓, refers to the sun rising in the east while also symbolizing a new ruler taking the throne.

The 月 character on the right-hand side of 朝 refers to the early sunrise in the east at the time when the moon is still on the western horizon. 月 also symbolizes the previous realm or kingdom.

Thus, 朝 is a very meaningful compound character when referring to dynasty; it speaks to the rise of a new emperor at the beginning of a new era, just like the rise of the sun in the early morning to replace the moon.

Departure Herald, from the Chinese Xuande reign period (1425-1435 AD). (Image: Wikimedia / CC0 1.0)

Departure Herald, from the Chinese Xuande reign period (AD 1425-1435). (Image: Wikimedia / CC0 1.0)

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