July 09, 2019

Understanding Chinese characters is a book that compiles years of Chinese character study in a concise and understandable way for the learner. Learn to understand Chinese characters for what they really are with a book that is easy to use, combining the best modern Chinese character academic research with the best learner experience.

Written by Vladimir Skultety, a graduate of Chinese studies specialized in Chinese character etymology and a polyglot speaking 15 languages working as an interpreter of Mandarin Chinese, English and Slovak.

Buy PDF for € 24.99 (+VAT)

Free Character practice sheets included

Download a FREE 50 page preview

Key features
  • suitable for anyone looking to understand and learn Chinese characters quickly and effectively
  • simple enough for beginners, detailed and accurate enough for advanced learners
  • characters in the book cover up to 70% of most modern texts written in Chinese
  • contains both Traditional and Simplified characters 
  • free printable character practice sheets with correct stroke order included
  • based on years of extensive and very detailed academic research, but written in a way which avoids academic clutter
  • high quality color images
  • custom designed illustrations
  • custom painted Oracle bone characters
  • licensed beautiful Seal Script font
  • 273 pages


  1. Hi, Vlad. I also think this cover stands out the most.
    Never dealt with Gumroad before. For some reason it asks for my ZIP-code, though the book's in pdf... Can I buy it on Amazon?

    1. Hi Elija,

      thank you for being interested in the book:) It is unfortunately not available on Amazon.

      Here is what Gumroad says about the ZIP code:

      If you are being asked to enter your ZIP or Postal code, that means that your credit card provider is asking you to verify that you know the ZIP code attached to your card.

      The ZIP Code or Postal code we need is the one stored by your credit card provider. If you are unsure about this, please contact your credit card provider.

      I'm sorry for the inconvenience. If you don't feel like entering your ZIP code but still would like the book, send me an email to vladimir@foreverastudent.com and we'll figure something out.

      Thank you again:)


    2. Oh, I got it. Looks like they ban certain Russian credit card providers. My international MC worked fine, though. Thank you for replying!

    3. Glad to hear that. All the best.

  2. Čau Vlado. Tady Šimon. Chci se zeptat jak to vypadá s tvým studiem. Přidal si nějaký další jazyk do své sbírky nebo se spíš snažíš zlepšovat své starší jazyky.

    I just wanted to tell you that I think you're one of the best polyglots I've ever seen considering the number of the languages you know and the very high level you manage to maintain in them.

    Ich spreche nur 5 Sprachen, und bin fliessend nur in Tschechisch und Englisch. I habe einen Test gemacht (?) und ich kenne 16 Tausend Wörter in Englisch, wie jemand der in der USA seit 8 Jahren gewohnt hat. Y creo que es increíble considerando, que nunca fuí a ningun país donde se habla el inglés. Pero tu hablas 16 idiomas y tu inglés o por lo menos la manera en que lo pronuncias es superior a la mía.

    У меня есть вопрос. Насколько ты понимаешь людей из Чэнду? Сычуань.

    A klidně můžeš odpovědět jen jedním jazykem. :) hodně štěstí

    1. Ahoj Simone,

      neucim sa ziadne jazyky. Uz ma to az tak nebavi, ked mam pravdu povedat. Pomaly sa pripravujem na jeden jazykovy projekt, ktory bude v Septembri a potom to s jazykmi asi zabalim. Stoji to hrozne vela casu a usilia a ked to cloveka nebavi, tak to nema vyznam.

      Nerozpraval som sa este s nikym z Chengdu, ani som nikoho odtial nepocul. Myslim ale, ze ak by rozpravali spisovnou Cinstinou, mal by som im rozumiet bez problemov.

      Maj sa pekne,