Offline handwritten chinese character recognition is still a difficult problem because of its large stroke changes, writing anomaly, and the difficulty for obtaining its stroke ranking information. Generally, offline handwritten chinese character can be divided into two procedures: feature extraction for capturing handwritten chinese character information and feature classifying for character recognition. In this paper, we proposed a new Chinese character recognition algorithm. In feature extraction part, we adopted elastic mesh dividing method for extracting the block features and its relative fuzzy features that utilized the relativities between different strokes and distribution probability of a stroke in its neighbor sub-blocks. In recognition part, we constructed a classifier based on a supervised competitive learning algorithm to train competitive learning neural network with the extracted features set. Experimental results show that the performance of our algorithm is encouraging and can be comparable to other algorithms.© (2005) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.