Chinese Symbol for Love

ai Chinese symbol for love (simplified form on left) = 1. love; profound affection 2. be fond of 3. treasure; cherish

On the right is the original (traditional) form of the Chinese symbol for love.

It contains the character xin in the middle which means "heart" so love is "a matter of the heart".

Above xin, the component means "breathe into". Below xin is the component which means "gracious motion".

This gives rise to the lofty notion of love: what breathes into the heart and inspires gracious motion. The ancients who conjured up the word were surely romantics!

(A tip for next Valentine's: Quiz your loved one: "Do you know what the Chinese character for love means?)

In the simplified modern form (top) the Chinese love character is more down to earth, emphasizing friendship over romantic love. The lower part you3 means "friend".

Some examples of uses of ai:

ai4 qing2 = love between man and woman

ai4 ren2 = lover ; husband or wife

ai4 hao4 = interest or hobby

ai4 bu4 shi4 shou3 = be so fond of something that one cannot put it down (or take one's eyes off it)

ai4 guo2 = patriotic

In China love is often synonymous with happy marriage and family life denoted by "double happiness" shuang1 xi3.

Auspicious Chinese symbol for love include:

Mandarin Ducks - famous symbol of lovers

Double Happiness sign - meaning conjugal happiness and fertility

Red Peony - China's Queen of flowers symbolizing beauty, romance and amorous feelings of youth

Other than the Chinese symbol for love, do you know the Chinese symbols for words like peace, strength, joy, crisis, dragon, and more? Check out this list.