The Most Difficult Chinese Character to Write, Ranked

Choose the character you think is the most difficult!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on May 27, 2024 06:30
Mastering the art of Chinese calligraphy involves facing the challenge of writing some notoriously tricky characters. These characters often comprise numerous strokes and complex structures that can be daunting to learners at all levels. To assist in identifying which ones pose the greatest difficulties, compiling a list by popular vote could serve as a beneficial resource. By participating in ranking these challenging characters, users not only aid others in recognizing which characters require extra practice but also contribute to a communal learning tool. This process enables a collaborative environment where insights and experiences are shared, thereby easing the learning curve for many. Your input can significantly shape this valuable resource, guiding the focus of educational efforts where they're needed most.

What Is the Most Difficult Chinese Character to Write?

  1. 1


    A character often associated with Biangbiang noodles, known for its complexity.
    • Stroke count: 58 in its most complex form
    • Usage: Primarily associated with a type of noodle in Shaanxi province
  2. 2


    A character representing a verb meaning 'to verbosely quarrel' or 'to wrangle'.
    • Stroke count: 64
    • Usage: Rarely used in modern Chinese
  3. 3


    A character used in the name of a historical figure from the Three Kingdoms period.
    • Stroke count: 48
    • Usage: Historical, rarely used in contemporary contexts
  4. 4


    A character meaning 'to argue' or 'to dispute', known for its complexity.
    • Stroke count: 36
    • Usage: Rare, mostly found in historical texts
  5. 5


    A character representing a mythical bird, often noted for its complexity.
    • Stroke count: 32
    • Usage: Mythological, rarely used in everyday language
  6. 6


    A character meaning 'strong' or 'powerful', noted for its complexity.
    • Stroke count: 30
    • Usage: Used in both modern and historical contexts
  7. 7


    A character used in names and in historical contexts, known for its number of strokes.
    • Stroke count: 29
    • Usage: Primarily used in historical names and texts
  8. 8


    A character meaning 'mountain', complex due to its traditional form.
    • Stroke count: 26
    • Usage: Used in both geographical names and idiomatic expressions
  9. 9


    A character meaning 'to transform', known for its complexity in traditional form.
    • Stroke count: 23
    • Usage: Common in both literary and colloquial contexts
  10. 10


    A character meaning 'to extinguish' or 'to annihilate', complex due to its construction.
    • Stroke count: 22
    • Usage: Used in literary and formal contexts

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About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most difficult Chinese character to write. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or character is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 81 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Movers & Shakers

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each character once every 24 hours. The rank of each character is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

Additional Information

More about the Most Difficult Chinese Character to Write

Rank #1 for the most difficult Chinese character to write: Biáng (Source)
Chinese characters have a rich history. They evolved from ancient pictographs and ideographs. Some characters are simple, with just a few strokes. Others are complex, with many intricate parts. Among these, one stands out as the most difficult to write. This character challenges even native speakers.

The complexity of a Chinese character depends on the number of strokes. Strokes are the individual lines and dots that make up a character. Simple characters may have just one or two strokes. Complex characters can have over 50 strokes. The most difficult character has more than 50 strokes. Each stroke must be precise. A slight mistake can change the meaning.

Writing this character takes time and patience. It requires a deep understanding of stroke order. Stroke order is the sequence in which strokes are written. There are rules for stroke order. These rules ensure that characters are balanced and legible. For the most difficult character, following these rules is crucial. One wrong stroke can make the character unreadable.

Learning to write this character starts with mastering simpler ones. Students practice basic strokes first. They learn the rules of stroke order. They then move on to more complex characters. This process takes years. Even after years of practice, writing the most difficult character is a challenge.

The character's complexity also reflects Chinese culture. It shows the importance of precision and attention to detail. It is a symbol of dedication. Writing it well is a mark of skill and knowledge. It is a test of one's patience and perseverance.

This character is not used often in daily life. It appears in specialized contexts. It may be found in historical texts or classical literature. It is also used in artistic calligraphy. Calligraphers take pride in writing it beautifully. It is a way to showcase their talent.

Technology has made writing this character easier. Computers and smartphones can generate it with a few keystrokes. However, the skill of writing it by hand remains valuable. It connects people to their cultural heritage. It is a reminder of the richness of the Chinese language.

Learning to write this character can be a rewarding experience. It teaches discipline and focus. It offers a deeper appreciation of Chinese characters. It is a journey that requires dedication. Those who master it gain a sense of accomplishment.

In conclusion, the most difficult Chinese character to write is a testament to the complexity and beauty of the language. It requires precision, patience, and practice. While technology offers shortcuts, the traditional skill of writing it by hand remains important. It is a symbol of cultural pride and artistic achievement. Those who take on the challenge find it a rewarding endeavor.

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