Friday, 19 May 2017

〇 | líng

In Mandarin Chinese, (Pinyin: líng 🔊) is a word for number zero.

In AD 690, Wu Zetian (624—705), the only Empress Regnant in the history of China, adopted a number of new characters, one of which was . Originally, it was meant to replace the unwieldy character “star”. After the Empress’s death, the new characters fell into disuse. In 1247, Qin Jiushao (ca. 1202—1261) found a new job for . It was introduced as the symbol for zero in his work 數書九章 (Shùshū Jiǔzhāng, “Mathematical Treatise in Nine Sections”). Another hanzi with the same meaning, , is mainly used for financial purposes.

More photos related to numbers and sea glass @ Shutterstock.

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