IJLLL 2015 Vol.1(4): 246-249 ISSN: 2382-6282
DOI: 10.18178/IJLLL.2015.1.4.47

Analysis of Chinese Chemical Language and Terminology

Hao Chang
Abstract—The aim of this paper aims is to analyze the Chinese characters used to express the terms and nomenclature - chemical elements, organic and inorganic compounds - often found in the science of chemistry, with a view to better understanding the Chinese cultural mindset underlying this science. Interestingly, most Chinese chemical terms have their origins in a Western worldview of chemistry; yet the former is absolutely different from the latter. Firstly, most Chinese chemical nomenclature are comprised of a single syllable radical character that has no significance. Secondly, the radical of the character that indicates the physical state of the elements and compounds are shown in Western terms. And thirdly, most of the descriptive terms are distinct from Western terminology; some have even been completely misinterpreted.

Index Terms—Chemical terms, nomenclature, John Fryer, Xu Shou.

Hao Chang is with the Center for General Education, I-Shou University, Taiwan (e-mail: changhao@ isu.edu.tw).

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Cite:Hao Chang, "Analysis of Chinese Chemical Language and Terminology," International Journal of Languages, Literature and Linguistics vol. 1, no. 4, pp. 246-249, 2015.

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