Kanji in 2023


Written by aki

In Japan, a single kanji character is used every year to describe the state of the world this year.

The event began in 1995 as part of an educational campaign to promote the wonder and depth of kanji.

They have a presentation every year at a place called Kiyomizu Temple in Kyoto.

Kiyomizu Temple

At the end of the year, they call for one kanji character that represents the year from all over Japan and decide on the most popular one.

It is dedicated to Kiyomizu-dera Temple to reflect on the past year and to wish for a bright next year.


What was the kanji for the year 2023?

So let’s get right to it and announce the Kanji for 2023.It is a “税”.In Japanese, it reads “Zei”. By the way, it means tax.

They collected 5,976 votes out of 147,878 entries from all over the country.

As to why there were so many votes for this kanji, 2023 was also a year in which taxes were discussed a lot in the Diet in Japan.

In addition, various “tax” related topics continued to be discussed, including changes in the tax system and tightening of the already existing tax system.


By the way, let’s also check the Kanji characters below the second place.

Second place is “暑”.This indicates that the temperature is hot.This year’s summer in Japan, also known as the “heat wave,” was quite a challenge.


Third place is “戦” and fourth is “虎”.”戦” means war.News from overseas is also a reason in determining the “Kanji of the Year”.


And in fourth place, “虎”.It reads “Tora,” which refers to a tiger.

The reason why the Tigers are in fourth place is because of Japanese baseball.There is a Japanese professional baseball team called the Hanshin Tigers.It is also nicknamed “Tora(虎)”.

In fact, this baseball team won the league championship in Japan Baseball for the first time in 38 years.


The victory parade was held at a place called Dotonbori in Osaka.

The victory parade was held at a place called Dotonbori in Osaka.

It sounded like it was incredibly hot!


May next year be even better

How has the past year been for you?

With the Covid-19 epidemic subsiding, it seems that more people are traveling to Japan.I, too, have traveled to many places this year, though still only domestically.

I hope I can continue to introduce more and more wonderful things about Japan next year.


I will close this year’s last blog in Japanese.

YOI OTOSHI WO!(Have a Happy New Year!)



Hello! I live in a place called Shiga, Japan. I'm not very good at English, but I'm writing this blog in the hope that I can convey some of Japan's beautiful places and delicious food to people overseas.