After doing numerals, I always feel wanting for hanja that is more than just a number. So I’ll wrap this post up by discussing a non-numeral hanja. That hanja is 門 [문], one that is both a word and a character. Let’s take a look at this basic hanja, shall we?
Hanja #34: 門 – 문 문
門 [문] is a simple character you will see a lot in Korea. It is in the name of many of Seoul’s tourist attractions: The Eight Gates of Seoul. I guess with this little tidbit of information you can already guess what the character represents. It, indeed, represents “door” and “gate”. You have to see this as a very broad concept and you will see it used in a quite a few Korean words.
Gates of Seoul
However as I mentioned, the in Seoul, 門 [문] is a character that is part of the name for all 8 of its gates. So why don’t we talk about those. The eight gates are divided into two groups: 사대문 [四大門] (The Four Great Gates) and 사소문 [四小門] (The Four Small Gates). The large gates are at the cardinal points (North, East, South and West) and the four smaller gates are in the cardinal points in-between (Northwest, Northeast, Southeast, and Southwest). Furthermore each gate has an official name and direction name. Let’s go over all of them:
- Sukjeongmun: 숙정문 [肅靖門] or 북대문 [北大門] (‘North Big Gate”)
- Heunginjimun: 흥인지문 [興仁之門] or 동대문 [東大門] (“East Big Gate”)
- Sungnyemun: 숭례문 [崇禮門] or 남대문 [南大門] (“South Big Gate”)
- Donuimun: 돈의문 [敦義門] or 서대문 [西大門] (“West Big Gate”) | No longer exist, location simply marked.
- Changuimun: 창의문 [彰義門] or 북소문 [北小門] (“North Small Gate”)
- Hyehwamun: 혜화문 [惠化門] or 동소문 [東小門] (“East Small Gate”)
- Gwanghuimun: 광희문 [光熙門] or 남소문 [南小門] (“South Small Gate”)
- Souimun: 소의문 [昭義門] or 서소문 [西小門] (“West Small Gate”) | No longer exists, location simply marked.
Besides these 8 gates, though other gates still exist in Seoul and they to use the hanja 門 [문] in their name. Pretty cool to see so much history when learning hanja, no? By the way, with the basic hanja of level 8 you can write the directional names of all 8 gates!
If you happen to know any other word you think has this hanja, let us know in the comments.
Our 一 Vocabulary List
*Meanings written in italics are the meanings when you use the noun as a 하다 verb.
|대문||Main entrance, main gate||大門|