5 strokes
book, present, main, origin, true, real, counter for long cylindrical things
Jōyō kanji, taught in grade 1
JLPT level N5
10 of 2500 most used kanji in newspapers


Stroke order

On reading compounds

  • 本 【ホン】 book, volume, script, this, present, current, ... in question, ... at issue, main, head, principal, real, genuine, regular, proper, counter for long, cylindrical things, counter for films, TV shows, etc., counter for goals, home runs, etc., counter for telephone calls
  • 本当 【ホントウ】 truth, reality, actuality, fact, proper, right, correct, official, genuine, authentic, real, natural, veritable
  • 社会資本 【シャカイシホン】 social capital, SOC
  • 配本 【ハイホン】 distribution of books

Kun reading compounds

  • 元 【もと】 origin, source, base, basis, foundation, root, cause, ingredient, material, base, mix, stock, (someone's) side, (someone's) location, original cost (or capital, principal, etc.), (plant) root, (tree) trunk, first section of a waka, counter for blades of grass, tree trunks, etc., and for falcons (in falconry), handle (chopsticks, brush, etc.), grip
  • 元々 【もともと】 originally, from the start, from the beginning, from the outset, by nature, none the worse (for), (coming out) even, in the same position (as before)
  • 大本 【おおもと】 root, origin, source, cause, basis, foundation, Ōmoto (religion)
  • 旗本 【はたもと】 shogunal vassal, direct retainer of a shogun


Japanese names:
まと、 ごう
Mandarin Chinese (pinyin):


  • libro
  • origen
  • base
  • contador de cosas alargadas


  • livro
  • presente
  • real
  • verdadeiro
  • principal
  • sufixo p/ contagem De coisas longas


  • livre
  • présent
  • essentiel
  • origine
  • principal
  • réalité
  • vérité
  • compteur d'objets allongés
45 A Guide To Reading and Writing Japanese (Florence Sakade)
76 A Guide To Reading and Writing Japanese 3rd edition (Henshall, Seeley and De Groot)
70 A Guide To Remembering Japanese Characters (Kenneth G. Henshall)
15 A New Dictionary of Kanji Usage
96 Classic Nelson (Andrew Nelson)
20 Essential Kanji (P.G. O’Neill)
61 Japanese Kanji Flashcards (Max Hodges and Tomoko Okazaki)
212 Japanese Names (P.G. O’Neill)
2.1 Japanese for Busy People
25 Kanji and Kana (Spahn and Hadamitzky)
25 Kanji and Kana, 2nd Edition (Spahn and Hadamitzky)
37 Kanji in Context (Nishiguchi and Kono)
1046 Kodansha Compact Kanji Guide
4314 Kodansha Kanji Dictionary (Jack Halpern)
2183 Kodansha Kanji Learner’s Dictionary (Jack Halpern)
2937 Kodansha Kanji Learner’s Dictionary, 2nd Edition (Jack Halpern)
215 Les Kanjis dans la tete (Yves Maniette)
14421 Morohashi
3502 New Japanese English Character Dictionary (Jack Halpern)
2536 New Nelson (John Haig)
211 Remembering The Kanji (James Heisig)
224 Remembering The Kanji, 6th edition (James Heisig)
6 The Kanji Way to Japanese Language Power (Dale Crowley)
47 Tuttle Kanji Cards (Alexander Kask)
1855 2001 Kanji
0a5.25 The Kanji Dictionary
4-5-3 SKIP code
5023.0 Four corner code
1-43-60 JIS X 0208-1997 kuten code
672c Unicode hex code