Image: Lynn Fawcett
Image: Lynn Fawcett

Human beings are surrounded by diatomic oxygen in the atmosphere. It enables them to breathe, ha , and is necessary to sustain terrestrial life. A diatomic molecule of oxygen O2 is comprised of two atoms of the chemical element oxygen O which has the atomic number 8, .

A good example of the use of the ha symbol can be seen on the Lascaux safety lamp.

Author's Notes

It seems to me that whoever devised the symbol ha understood the molecular structure of diatomic oxygen.

Ha does not appear in the Shuowen Jiezi. However, the character does. Yellowbridge gives ha as a variant of ¹.

The area where the Lascaux safety lamp was found has been dated to 18,735 years, indicating that the character is at least that old2.




1. Radical number 12: Yellowbridge: List of bushou from the Kangxi Zidian: http://www.yellowbridge.com/chinese/radicals.php

2. Chantal Jègues-Wolkiewiez: Datation du Puits de Lascaux, September 2006: http://www.archeociel.com/datation_du_puits_de_lascaux.htm