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How many kanji do you know?

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To be fluent in Japanese one has to know roughly ~2000 kanji. How many do you know so far and how fast you're learning?

In the 2 years I've been studying Japanese I've learnt a bit more than 500 kanji. The beginnings were hard (I had no idea how to learn kanji properly), but right now I'm doing it way faster. Which is good, because 500 kanji in 2 years is not the most impressive score. I hope to learn the remaining ~1500 kanji in max three years. Will it work? We'll see...

How about you?

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I know about 2000-2500 chinese characters, therefore I know about the same amount of Kanji :=) Still, as I am not very familiar with Japanese and Hiragana/Katakana, I am not very good when it comes to guess the meaning of Japanese texts. :frozen:

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It seems that you are much further ahead than I am in your kanji studies. I know the english meaning of quite a few kanji (into the hundreds) and can guess a few others from radicals etc, but in terms of knowing the on yomi and kun yomi for each kanji I would say I have about 100 learned well.

If only China and Japan had only met once in their history, then we wouldn't have to deal with there being loads of different readings for the same characters.

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I know more than 1000 Kanjis :D

I can also recognize a lot of Chinese characters, but that's not necessary the same because of different meanings.

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I'm pretty much in the same boat. I know about 2000 kanji (Japanese usage and pronunciations both onyomi and kunyomi) and can understand a lot of written Japanese but I keep getting them confused with my native tongue (Chinese).

I think the situation is parallel with French and English. The English language has tons of French words but with different pronunciations and even different meanings. For example 'gain' and 'gagner' are quite different in meaning and 'profit' and 'profiter' as well.

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I learned about 100 kanji for the JLPT 4th level exam back in 2008 when I was in 8th grade. Kanji was definitely the toughest part of the exam, because its just memorization. You also need to know the different interpretations of the same symbol. I'm not sure if they still follow the same exam pattern. I've forgotten most of them too after such a long time :( I hope to learn them back soon enough.

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I can read and write a little under 2000 kanji, and just read a few hundred more (not exactly sure how many).

There gets to be this point in the journey of learning Japanese when its stops being so hard to learn new kanji and it's improving your grammar that  becomes the most difficult thing. At some point you just get the hang of learning new characters, but so far I'm yet to get the hang of learning new grammar points...

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I have to know about 2000?! I thought I'd be done by 800 or so...

I currently know about 200 characters so I guess I'm only 10% done, down from 25%.

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15

lol but I'm just starting too. Been using the Kanji Damage course on Memrise and I have to say, I am intimidated by the kanji. I think that the number 2000 sways above my head making it seem worse than it really is.

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I probably can read 2-3k of them ((in chinese)), but in Japanese, I've only learned about 300-400.

Many of the onyomi readings can be "derived" from the chinese readings though, and oftentimes, so can the meanings.

Also, I've always heard that the Joyo kanji isn't enough, and that you really need about 1000 more to be able to understand newspapers, books, etc fluidly.

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With Remembering the Kanji + Anki I'm learning 20 new kanjis a day, but only meaning for the moment.

I'm now at 244 so :3

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I'm not going to lie and say I know alot. Actually, most of you here are likely to be my seniors. I used to know around 30 to 40 kanji but it's been a while so I am likely to have forgotten half of those. On a bright side, I do know all my kana.

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Don't feel too bad about it. I posted in this thread a year ago and I did know about 2000 kanji then, but now it's more likely that I can read around 1500 or so and write under a thousand. They seem to slip really quickly. Actually, a lot of younger Japanese people have trouble writing kanji - in this modern age of computers, there's little reason for people to handwrite anything. It's just like how young people in the West can't write cursive (or write very neatly at all).

Depending on what you want to get out of learning Japanese, you might not need to learn many kanji anyway. Unfortunately, I wanted to be able to read Japanese novels and possibly become a translator, so...

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As of today, I'm back up to remember 30 or 40 kanji thanks to wanting to know a few mystery-related ones. I didn't relearn all of the kanji I'd originally forgotten though. Instead, I learned things like the kanji for detective. It looks kind of like a little duck with a walking stick, which is how I remember it: 偵

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I was taught the Kanji characters were standardized to 1840, so I'm not sure where the rest of those extra ones come from that I need to learn to get up to 2000 characters!

I remember the whole lot being drawn up by successive Japanese Exchange Students in proper calligraphy and being pasted on sheets of paper reaching several times right around the classroom. I'm not sure how many I can recall at this moment, so perhaps I should test myself? I guess I'm still waiting for the need to arise!  

I'm surprised by the statement that says:

On 10/19/2013, 8:45:08, Czarownica said:

To be fluent in Japanese one has to know roughly ~2000 kanji

To be fluent in writing or speech? I don't believe it applies to either! Perhaps "eloquent" could replace "fluent"? Of course, knowing all of your Kanji characters doesn't guarantee you know how to use them correctly! In class, I was called "walking dictionary" and "walking encyclopedia", but word quantity never guarantees quality!

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On 19/10/2013, 1:21:11, linguaholic said:

I know about 2000-2500 chinese characters, therefore I know about the same amount of Kanji :=) Still, as I am not very familiar with Japanese and Hiragana/Katakana, I am not very good when it comes to guess the meaning of Japanese texts. :frozen:

That's impressive! :) I'd love to be fluent in both Chinese and Japanese too. Are Kanji the same with most Chinese characters?

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I don't know an exact number, but if I may guess it would be somewhere between 600 and 900 characters.
I did realise knowing kanji makes the Japanese language easier to learn.

And I've set the text in Pokémon Omega Ruby game for the Nintendo 3DS from "kana" to "kanji".
Admitted, I still can't read everything with this option, but I can understand the text itself much better with kanji turned on.
This is because lots of Japanese words have multiple meanings and kanji solves this problem for you.
When speaking I can rely on pitch accent, since you can't hear written text.

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On 11/15/2014, 3:57:46, gegegeno said:

Don't feel too bad about it. I posted in this thread a year ago and I did know about 2000 kanji then, but now it's more likely that I can read around 1500 or so and write under a thousand. They seem to slip really quickly.

I'm about at the same level. I really don't practice the language enough to improve. When I was studying hard, my first 2 years of Japanese, I started out with Heisig, and never did enough reading/writing to get on top of the jouyou. Heisig is a great beginning for someone who is really gung-ho and puts all those characters to use right away. For everyone else, it's probably more efficient just to learn them as they encounter them.

As far as what makes you "fluent", it all depends on what you mean by "fluent". Please don't use that word without telling us what you really mean.

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When I studied Japanese at university, we were taught the standard  Jōyō kanji (around 2000 plus). The main problem for me was that I was a native Chinese speaker (I grew up speaking a non-standard dialect) and I kept having problems when reading aloud because I often could not decided if a kanji was to be pronounced with on-yomi or kun-yomi. 

Learning to read names was a big problem for me (though I believe that I'm not alone) - for example, the unisex name Hajime (meaning 'beginning', 'origin' or 'first') can be written with 10 different kanji, and this does not include hiragana and katakana. For example, the kanji for the name of Moriyasu Hajime (the famous Japanese footballer) is  森保 一 !

In other words, among other ways the name 'Hajime' can be written as 一 (usually meaning "one" in Chinese)! I found this to be particularly difficult!

 

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I used to study Japanese for a year and few months and I've completely forgot kanji to be honest. Nowadays I can remember only few which disappoints me a lot since I really wanted to learn for a lifetime. Chinese helps a bit but I'm only learning the basics at the moment so I wouldn't say that I'm winning with that.

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How many kanji do I know? Not enough.  Ugh, it's never enough!  I probably can recognize and accurately read close to 2000 kanji, but then when I pick up a Japanese newspaper, go to the politics or economy section, and find that I haven't a clue what I'm reading.  It is super frustrating to think I finally learned enough then a friend throws in the kanji for apple and I'm flung back to rudimentary kanji practice all over again lol.  

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I know, probably was able to recognize and read at least a onyomi each more than 1500 when I was actively studying japanese. Right now, not so much. That figure perhaps lowered to 800 or 1000. 

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My current progress at WaniKani says I know 677 kanji.
However, around 30 new kanji get unlocked each week if I'm going through it as quickly as I do now and many kanji I already know aren't within this 677 kanji range, they reside within the other 40 levels I didn't unlock yet (I'm level 20 now and there are 60 levels over there).

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