|Handwritten Japanese characters,|
showing kaisho on the left
and gyōsho on the right.
These are also known as mōhitsushotai (毛筆書体), or "brush"
styles. Japanese calligraphy is known as shodō (書道) or just sho (書).
|Kaisho (楷書) or block characters|
Kaishotai (楷書体) is the most traditional square style of
characters. Horizontal lines slanting upwards going from left to
right. The kai in kaisho means "regular". This is the type
of handwriting taught to Japanese schoolchildren at elementary
school. See also How is Japanese writing taught to Japanese children?
|Gyōsho (行書) or semi-cursive|
Gyōshotai (行書体), so-called "semi-cursive", is a flowing
style of writing.
|Sōsho or cursive calligraphy by Zhang Xu, a Chinese calligrapher.|
Sōsho (草書) is an even more flowing style than
, with each character often expressed by a single
curving brushstroke. This style was the basis for the origin of
hiragana. See How did katakana and hiragana originate? Characters written in this
style may be impossible to read without special training.
References and web links
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