As I'm sure everyone has heard by now, France's famous Notre Dame Cathedral caught fire and received severe damage to its largely wooden internal architecture. Since the incident was surprisingly timely, I thought I would take advantage of the occasion to teach you guys another random Japanese word.
Therefore, today's word is 大聖堂/だいせいどう/daiseidou or "cathedral". As usual, lets break it down.
*Beware: The pronunciation of this kanji may change depending on context.
I think this one of those reasonably understandable kanji compounds that makes sense when the individual definition of the kanji is understood. That being said, cathedrals are generally known for their large scale, so its no wonder the first kanji is "大・big". The next kanji, "聖・saint", is also a reasonable selection, considering Catholicism enthusiastically celebrates the contributions of saints to Christianity almost as much as Jesus himself. Aside from that, the individual radicals for "聖" are also very intuitive for those familiar with Christianity. Psalm 47:7 states "For god is king(王) of all the Earth: sing(口) you praises with understanding(耳)." Along the top(かんむり), we have "耳・ear" and "口・mouth". At the bottom(あし), we have "王・king". Taking that loose interpretation into consideration, it isn't unreasonable to assume the definition of "聖" to be a person/instituition that spreads the word of god to all whom listen. I'm no christianity expert, but that sounds legit to me. Anyway, the last kanji "堂・temple" rounds out the compound neatly to inform the nature of the building. Since a cathedral is a place in which spirituality is cultivated, this kanji selection is also quite natural.
Thats all for today, hopefully you guys learned something interesting as it relates to current events. Are you religious or spiritual? Do you attend some sort of service at an institution like a cathedral, church, shrine or temple? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. As always, please like and share this post~
Until next time,