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14 DEFINITION To beg, plead for. PRONUNCIATION qǐ 乞 SOUND WORD Chihuahua The smallest dog. COMPONENTS RIFLE 8 + 乙 HOOK13 SECOND (RIFLE and HOOK are underscored with a dotted line because they both are fictitious meanings. Rifle has no real value associated with it while hook’s real value is SECOND, written as a superscript next to its sequence number) MNEMONICS • Here is your very first composite Chinese character made up of two building blocks, that you were begging for! • The ancient form, , looks like a hand begging for food or money. STORY Today, I saw a man sitting in the street with a Chihuahua in his lap, a HOOK in place of his left hand, begging for money. When he asked me to spare some change, I refused, until he pulled out a RIFLE and his Chihuahua started growling! EXAMPLES 乞 求 (qǐ qiú) To beg. 乞 丐 (qǐ gài) Beggar. WANT A LITTLE MORE? Usage frequency: Middle third. 36 三 十 六

15 DEFINITION 1. One. 2. Whole, all, unity, together. 3. Briefly; once. PRONUNCIATION yī SOUND WORD 一 Yiiii! A shriek at the sight of a mouse or the squeaking sound of a mouse. MNEMONICS • This character can be viewed as an overworked number one lying down. • As a building block, it provides for different meanings based on its appearance: o Ceiling if it appears towards the top of a character. o Floor if it appears towards the bottom of a character. o Ground level or horizon if the action of the story is outside. o A slit (narrow cut). STORY “Yiiii! There is a mouse on the floor of our bedroom!” “So what? Are you scared of just one little, tiny mouse?” EXAMPLES 1. 一 个 人 (yī gè rén) One person. 一 边 (yī biān) One side. 2. 一 同 (yī tóng) Along, together. 一 身 汗 (yī shēn hàn) Sweating all over. 3. 看 一 看 (kàn yī kàn) Take a look. WANT A LITTLE MORE? • It is pronounced with the first tone when standing alone. Its tone changes in other situations: when followed by a character in the fourth tone, it is pronounced in the second tone. In all other circumstances, it is pronounced in the fourth tone. • This is the second most used Chinese character and the first of the 214 Kangxi radicals. 三 十 七 37