辜 death penalty

辜 death penalty

辜 is a phono-semantic character. In the seal script, 辜  =  (古)+ (辛).   

, a square knife used to tattoo a criminal’s face for identification, is the semantic component.

means past or ancient and serves as the phonetic component, indicating that the crime is convicted in accordance with past cases.

The original meaning of 辜 is death penalty.

Its extended meanings are:

A. crime, guilt, for example, 死有余辜 even death would be too good for sb., 无辜 be innocent

B. let down, fail to live up to 辜负, 辜负他的期望You‘ve let him down.

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