A complete mahjong set contains 144 tiles. The tiles fall into four categories: suits, honour tiles, flowers and seasons.
There are three suits:
the dots (also called circles or balls):
the bamboo’s (also called bams or sticks):
and the characters (also called characks, cracks, or wan):
The suit tiles are numbered 1 through 9, and in any given suit, there are four of each number.
There are two types of honour tiles. The winds (North, South, East, and West):
and the dragons (Red, Green, and White):
The red has the Chinese character (in red) for Cheung - meaning centre of the four directions. The green dragon is not really a dragon, but a green imprinted Chinese character, Fa (or Fa Choy), meaning “commence” or “begin good luck.”
Just as there are four each suit number, there are four of each wind and four of each dragon.
The flower and season tiles differ in nature from the suit and honour tiles. There are only 4 flowers (Bamboo, Chrisantemum, Plum, and Orchid):
and only 4 season tiles (Winter, Spring, Summer, and Autumn):