Kangxi Radicals you shouldn’t use as characters in a text (probably)

Edit: I have learned a bit more about some of the characters listed below since making this post. You might find more complete or accurate information on the Big List or in the post about the radical in question.

(I think the Chinese Character Dictionary at chinese-tools.com actually gives pretty thorough information about all of this. It’s in Chinese, so it’s not something I can use to any great extent, plus I have the impression that, even apart from that, it goes into more detail about archaic uses etc. than I can handle.)


So, here is a tentative list of (simplified versions of) Kangxi radicals that you probably shouldn’t use in the writing of a modern Mandarin Chinese simplified text (except for referring to radicals in a text about radicals and like that).

Some of those only function as components, others are archaic or very obscure, possibly other reasons exist for some.

Please take this list with a grain of salt! I wanted something like this and I couldn’t find it anywhere, so I took a stab at putting it together myself, but it’s really out of my league. There may well be significant omissions and/or mistakes. Corrections would be welcome.


*,彡, 爿*** — I’m not really sure what’s up with these characters. My guess is they can be used, but in ways that are pretty obscure and/or not quite formally correct maybe. Anyhow, don’t just use them as you find them in a list of radicals. (That is, don’t translate “bristles” as “彡”, for example)
**尢 is only used independently as a variant of 尤 — you2 / yóu — outstanding (en.wiktionary)

(I will probably integrate this list in the Characters Index in the future)

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