Welcome to the “International Seminar of Chinese and Its Character System”。 It’s my great pleasure and privilege to have invited so many Sinologists from all over the world。 The next 3 weeks will see us engage in intensive and constructive studies and exchanges of opinions。
We are glad to see that a worldwide interest in Chinese is increasing at an accelerating tempo. Considering that Chinese has the largest number of speakers in the world and the greatest time depth in its literature, this interest is long overdue.
In a sense, Chinese is a very old language, and its earliest characters date back nearly four thousand years. During their long history of development, Chinese characters have evolved into many different script forms, such as the seal character, official script, regular script and running script. Chinese calligraphers usually render their Chinese characters in ways that exaggerate the form to yield artistic beauty, such as those in stone inscriptions seen in tourist resorts. Chinese calligraphy is a subject of artistic study. As your interest in Chinese character system increases in the days to come, I will discuss in due time the different schools of Chinese calligraphy, and how to appreciate the artistic beauty of Chinese calligraphy.