Mark Zegarelli
Mark Zegarelli

How to Write Chinese

by Lǐ Guāng Yào and Mark Zegarelli

Chapter 1

Your First Three Basic Strokes:
éngshù, and zhé

In this lesson, you learn: 

In Chinese writing, which is called hànzi, the most basic element is called a stroke. A single stroke is always written without lifting the pen from the paper.


When written with a calligraphy pen, the classical form of each hànzi stroke is beautiful and often quite stylized. However, in everyday life, modern Chinese people often scribble their strokes just like native English speakers do when they write. So don't worry too much about perfection as you're learning the basic hànzi strokes.


In this chapter, I introduce you to three common strokes that you'll use virtually every time you write in Chinese.