Can you decipher this?

This is a portion of a drawing the Countess has in a keepsake frame.  The women in the picture appear to be Chinese of some variety.

I know several readers have spent time in Asia and/or have close acquaintances that might    have cultural awareness of whether this is writing or just ornamental.   If it is writing, the words might be an advertisement.   My suspicion is that it is Cantonese…

Any thoughts?


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5 Responses to Can you decipher this?

  1. briand75 says:

    Any idea when it was created? That would narrow down whether this is a modern character set or not.

    • Fred Stiening says:

      The physical print itself is pretty old. When the original was drawn may be a lot older. It is not the character set that Mao imposed to standardize Chinese. It is probably late 1800s or early 1900s

      • CC1s121LrBGT says:

        I had sent the image to two different OCR websites that support Chinese and neither did a good job recognizing the characters. I’ll email it to someone I know that speaks Chinese.

        By the way, Cantonese and Mandarian are spoken languages that use the same written language. While they can’t talk to each other, they can text each other. China is a vast country and the written language spread far and wide but was spoken differently in different places. Mau standardized that by forcing all citizens to speak the same language- Mandarin.

        Mao also simplified the written language, it is often called “simplified” while the written language outside China (Taiwan, Singapore, Chinatown USA, etc) still use the “traditional” writing.

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