10 strokes
skeleton, bone, remains, frame
Jōyō kanji, taught in grade 6
JLPT level N2
936 of 2500 most used kanji in newspapers


Stroke order

On reading compounds

  • 骨 【コツ】 knack, skill, trick, secret, know-how, the ropes, hang, bone, skeleton, cremated remains (esp. the bones), ashes
  • 骨髄 【コツズイ】 bone marrow, medulla, true spirit, one's mind
  • 白骨 【ハッコツ】 white (bleached) bone, skeleton
  • 鉄骨 【テッコツ】 steel frame, steel beam, steel girder

Kun reading compounds

  • 骨 【ほね】 bone, frame, outline, core, backbone, spirit, fortitude, laborious, troublesome, difficult
  • 骨抜き 【ほねぬき】 boning (fish or meat), deboning, watering down (a plan, bill, etc.), dilution, emasculation, taking the backbone out of, weakening
  • 河骨 【こうほね】 Japanese spatterdock (species of water lily, Nuphar japonica)
  • 水母の骨 【くらげのほね】 something that one would not expect to exist, something exceedingly rare, jellyfish bones


Mandarin Chinese (pinyin):
gu3, gu1, gu2


  • hueso
  • esqueleto


  • esqueleto
  • osso
  • permanecer
  • moldura


  • os
  • squelette
  • restes
  • charpente
877 A Guide To Reading and Writing Japanese 3rd edition (Henshall, Seeley and De Groot)
867 A Guide To Remembering Japanese Characters (Kenneth G. Henshall)
1081 A New Dictionary of Kanji Usage
5236 Classic Nelson (Andrew Nelson)
971 Essential Kanji (P.G. O’Neill)
1017 Japanese Kanji Flashcards (Max Hodges and Tomoko Okazaki)
1213 Japanese Names (P.G. O’Neill)
1266 Kanji and Kana (Spahn and Hadamitzky)
1340 Kanji and Kana, 2nd Edition (Spahn and Hadamitzky)
1104 Kanji in Context (Nishiguchi and Kono)
1922 Kodansha Compact Kanji Guide
3288 Kodansha Kanji Dictionary (Jack Halpern)
1699 Kodansha Kanji Learner’s Dictionary (Jack Halpern)
2310 Kodansha Kanji Learner’s Dictionary, 2nd Edition (Jack Halpern)
1297 Les Kanjis dans la tete (Yves Maniette)
45098 Morohashi
2654 New Japanese English Character Dictionary (Jack Halpern)
6784 New Nelson (John Haig)
1288 Remembering The Kanji (James Heisig)
1383 Remembering The Kanji, 6th edition (James Heisig)
899 Tuttle Kanji Cards (Alexander Kask)
3646 2001 Kanji
4b6.14 The Kanji Dictionary
2-6-4 SKIP code
7722.7 Four corner code
1-25-92 JIS X 0208-1997 kuten code
9aa8 Unicode hex code