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1.2.4. What are the Jōyō Kanji?

A student colours in
the Jōyō Kanji
Photo credit: Claude Estèbe
Used under a Creative Commons licence

The Jōyō Kanji (常用漢字) are a list of Chinese characters, including their form, reading and stroke order, approved by the Japanese government, first published on 1 October 1981, replacing the Tōyō Kanji (see 1.2.3. What is the difference between and ?).[1] There is no official requirement upon Japanese people to use only these characters and their approved readings. They are simply promoted as the set of kanji which are most likely to be understood by all.

There are 1945 characters in the list. Another list, the Jinmeiyō Kanji, lists extra characters which may be used in naming. See 1.2.14. What are the Jinmeiyō Kanji?.


  1. Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology: 常用漢字表 [Jōyō Kanji hyō] (1 October 1981)
  2. 常用漢字表 (PDF)

External links


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