Sunday, May 20, 2012

Clerkly

This is one of those times when the word isn't striking but its context is.


From the two-page spread "Anatomy of a Character," which "traces the evolution and spread of the character for 'horse' through 3,500 years . . . " and which is compiled by Michael S. Lerner and designed by Travis LaMothe, in the Spring 2012 (Vol. XXIX, No 1) issue of World Policy Journal:


Lishu
clerkly script


The ancient Chinese character for "HORSE" resembles, in 500 BCE, four slightly different sized sugar cubes, black with ink and forming the "bottom" of a sailboat with a square rig mast, open on the right (so: not exactly a mast), with a moon sail, a sky sail, and a course sail.  

In approximately 800 BCE the character looks like a very interesting spider. Around 1480 BCE it looks like a stick-figure doodle of sorts for a character in a Miyazaki film.

Clerkly? I suppose this is a case of World Policy Journal: Expect the Unexpected.




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