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Questions tagged [japanese]

The national language of Japan, member of the small Japonic language family, otherwise considered to be isolated. For non-linguistic questions about the Japanese language, visit our sister site Japanese Language Stack Exchange.

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Does Japanese always emphasize the first syllable?

An example would be the Japanese surname Yukawa. So it would be pronounced "yoo-kah-wah".Where the "yoo" gets emphasized. Not a linguist so I don't know the correct terminology to ...
Mr X's user avatar
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-1 votes
2 answers
231 views

Half-letters in American English

I'm an American spending some time in Japan, and notice that even though most people know some English words, they have a hard time understanding and pronouncing a word like "left" because ...
luqui's user avatar
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11 votes
5 answers
3k views

Why did Japanese borrow words for simple numbers from Chinese?

I just realised that all (standalone) Japanese numbers from 1-10 are borrowed from Chinese (maybe except 4 and 7 if they're read as よん and なな instead of し and しち). Now, I understand why a language ...
HypnoSkales's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
102 views

"Quoted speech" forms in Japanese

Consider the following sentences in standard Japanese: とても小さな文字を読もうとしました。 それを信じようという気は更になかった。 なんで外国語を学ぶのに勇気が要るかというと、最初は失敗ばかりするからです。 大人になっても可愛くいたいという意識があるのかも知れません。 Below are the same four sentences, ...
kjo's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
320 views

Japanese is in its own lingustic family, but it sure seems to have a lot in common with Turkish

I speak Japanese, and recently, I've been exposed to Turkish. There's a good deal of overlap between structure, and some words. An example is "good", where it's "iidesu" in ...
b degnan's user avatar
  • 171
3 votes
2 answers
937 views

The difference between the phonemes /p/ and /b/ in Japanese

Is there any difference between the phonemes /p/ and /b/ in Japanese ? In English, they are pretty distinguishable. E.g: 'Bat' and 'pat' In Japanese, however, I get lost trying to tell which is which. ...
Kenny FürEver's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
50 views

Multiple-characters vocabulary acquisition by L1 Japanese/Chinese

I am looking for any evidence/reference on how L1 Japanese or L1 Chinese people acquire their multiple hanzi/kanji vocabulary. Take as simple as 折り畳み/折叠 (to fold). Words like 食べる/吃 and 飲む/喝 are not ...
làntèrn's user avatar
  • 101
0 votes
0 answers
142 views

Have I actually found something or is this just a 100+ coincidence cognates? indo-european, sino-tibetan, austroneisian, japanese, korean

I like comparing languages on my free time and found that Eurasian languages have a lot in common and I couldn't quite place my finger on it but the languages just seemed similar. One time I compared ...
that touhou nerd's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
147 views

Regex for segmentation as sentences for Thai, Khmer, Japanese, Chinese Simplified, Chinese Traditional and Amharic languages [closed]

I am processing text samples of the following languages: Thai Khmer Japanese Chinese Simplified Chinese Traditional & Amharic I need the text samples to be segmented as sentences using a regex. ...
Ilangoven's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
543 views

Japanese terms from Sanskrit

This question started when I learned that "hannya haramita" (般若波羅蜜多) comes from Sanskrit "prajñā pāramitā" (प्रज्ञापारमिता). It is not hard to see that what was /p/ in Sanskrit ...
Ergative Man's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why do Korean and Japanese share similar borrowed Chinese characters and is different from Chinese language?

In Japanese and Korean, "promise" is 約束 (yakusoku) and 약속 (yagsog). Both came from the Chinese characters 約束. However, 約束 in Chinese does not mean "promise" and actually means &...
AnP's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
157 views

Are there human general communication languages without a future tendency?

In Thai language there is no past tense, at least not for negative sentences: A Thai person might say "I don't go" (ฉัน ไม่ ไป) while the listener is expected to guess from the context if ...
variableism's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
226 views

Do any other languages use ruby characters(furigana) as extensively as Japanese

Just what the question asks. I’ll note that Chinese does use it extensively with pinyin when teaching Chinese to western foreigners. However I’m referring to using in materials by and for native ...
Joshua Olson's user avatar
15 votes
3 answers
2k views

Why Korean transcriptions of Japanese words uses the letters ㄱ,ㄷ,ㅈ for initial /k/, /t/, /tɕ/ while using ㅋ,ㅌ,ㅊ for other languages?

Looking at Korean transcription rules for Japanese, I noticed that for some consonants, the hangul transcription would change if it was in the initial position: https://kornorms.korean.go.kr//regltn/...
kanazoshi's user avatar
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4 votes
4 answers
323 views

Generic name for Hànzì/Kanji/Hanja/Chữ nôm/Sawndip?

So I was thinking about how to talk about these characters in a culturally-neutral way. Chinese seems to be used, but it implies a particular way of writing characters (not to mention it makes it ...
Chris Slojkowski's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
63 views

Rules/Notions explaining/regulating seemingly non complementary combinations of inflections/conjugations/tenses

Note: My original question was [Sentences with strange/Incorrect(from English point of view) Time conjunctive][Conclusive verb form] combinations and aspects/nuances reflected? Below is what I found ...
raruna's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
396 views

Etymology of ぐるぐる

Since it's written in Hiragana, I presume it is likely not a recent loan word. However, its pronounciation bears resemblance to "軲轆", a Mandarin word meaning wheel--similar to ぐるぐる's meaning ...
thenewpotato's user avatar
11 votes
1 answer
395 views

When and how did the Japanese honorific system evolve?

I know that languages, in general, can denote honorifics, especially with second person pronouns (T/V distinction, etc), and I imagine that the Japanese system of honorifics is probably an extension ...
Breaking Bioinformatics's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
207 views

Differences between free languages and official languages?

In short: as far as I know, English in the USA has no official standards from the government for how it's to be written and used. There are just dictionaries. Spanish however, has the RAE, which is an ...
OtheJared's user avatar
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6 votes
0 answers
147 views

Term for non-homograph homophone synonyms?

In Japanese, 熱い and 暑い are both read atsui and both mean 'hot'. The former pertains to an object (e.g. hot coffee) and the latter to weather. In French 'cuissot' and 'cuisseau' have the same ...
Mathieu Bouville's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
299 views

Does Japanese have V-T movement?

I am doing a research assignment on Japanese Syntax and I cannot seem to find any information regarding whether or not the Japanese language has V-T movement. Can anyone help with this?
user27519's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
484 views

Origin of Japanese particles だい(dai), かい(kai)

I was wondering about the origin of these emphatic interrogative particles in Japanese. It seems very likely that they are related to the more typical forms だ and か, but what led to the postfixed /i/? ...
Theler's user avatar
  • 11
3 votes
2 answers
378 views

Why can Japanese Godan verbs only have nine possible consonant sounds before the final -u?

The dictionary form of Japanese verbs always ends in a -u syllable. Ichidan (one row or single-step in German) verbs will always end in -る (-ru, e.g. 食べる, taberu, to eat) while godan (five rows or ...
Jan's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
187 views

Pronunciation and spelling of English loanwords in Japanese

The word for allergy in Japanese is アレルギ (pronounced "a/re/ru/gi") The first three characters are typical for words borrowed from English, but why is the last sound "gi" instead of "ji"? Is this word ...
joe's user avatar
  • 363
1 vote
4 answers
2k views

Can you write Japanese in only Hiragana, or only Katakana, or only Chinese characters?

I don't know Japanese, but I notice they have a mixture of Hiragana, Katakana, and Chinese characters. Instead of a mixture, could you write a whole article in just one of them? Does this ever occur? ...
Lance's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
222 views

What language/script did Japan during the Yamato period and earlier have?

The Yamato period (300 - 710) had an organized ruler, civilozation, etc. However, only in Nara period (710 - 794), which existed along with the Tang dynasty of China, a Japanese script and language ...
Andy W.'s user avatar
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6 votes
1 answer
388 views

What is the difference between the nominative case and the subject?

I'm studying Japanese and recently I came across the term "double nominatives". The idea is that ga marks the nominative case, so a phrase with two ga has two phrases in the nominative case: boku ga ...
OdraEncoded's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
65 views

Does high-context manifest in Japanese grammar and syntax?

Supposedly being a high-context culture, do modern Japanese text genres also sport a higher prevalence of ellipsis? Do Japanese texts, by and large, sport more kinds of high-context manifestations ...
matanox's user avatar
  • 299
0 votes
1 answer
920 views

Describing continuity and change (like mou and mada in Japanese)

In Japanese, mada まだ refers to a continuing state: 'still (as it was)' or 'not (changed) yet', and mou もう is about change: 'already (changed)' or 'no longer (the same)'. Are there other languages ...
Mathieu Bouville's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
177 views

Accidentally speak Japanese on reflex

There is one time I woke up late and accidentally speak in Japanese "yabai" which means "oh no" or "this is bad", when I came around after finishing getting ready I then realized I've just spoken in ...
Lydia's user avatar
  • 21
4 votes
2 answers
872 views

Is Swahili a Mora-counting language like Japanese?

I have this simple question on Kiswahili, a Bantu language. As you know in english, we can not always define morae. it's completely different from Japanese morae system. But when I learn Swahili, ...
mt.tread's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
135 views

Does each Japanese copula, だ, な, に, introduce a new clause?

In the book The Japanese Copula: Forms and Functions there's a passage that says: The existence of an adverbial copula is expected when we consider the fact that adjectives inflect to end form, the ...
OdraEncoded's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
464 views

Should Japanese postpositions be treated as belonging to the same category as English prepositions?

The Cambridge Grammar of the English Language and WALS, as well as Wikipedia, treat both English prepositions and Japanese postpositions (particles) as belonging to 'adpositions' (although CGEL ...
Bathrobe's user avatar
  • 159
1 vote
1 answer
825 views

What exactly is the Japanese 'u' sound?

I've mostly heard that its a ɯ sound. But I've also heard that its an 'endo-labial close back rounded vowel'. By 'endo-labial', I mean that its a rounded vowel that's pronounced without protruding the ...
user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
435 views

Vowel Deletion and Allophone variation in Japanese High Vowel Clusters?

I seem to have heard from films, shows and other japanese programs that there is a kind of vowel deletion in certain contexts which triggers a consonant change which might be allophonic. This paper ...
nmc's user avatar
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9 votes
2 answers
3k views

In what way is Japanese related to Sanskrit?

The Wikipedia says that Japanese katakana vowels “The gojūon inherits its vowel and consonant order from Sanskrit practice. “. Could expert explains this in easy language?
Ying Xiong's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
439 views

Why is transliteration of japanese always done English-style while transliteration from other non-latin script languges doesn't?

So it's a common issue that words transliterated from a non-latin alphabet towards latin alphabet will depend on which language using the latin alphabet they're translated into. Arabic example : The ...
Bregalad's user avatar
  • 344
4 votes
1 answer
350 views

Japanese kun'yomi with final N? [closed]

It is thought that the moraic post-vocalic consonant [N], spelt with ん, appeared in Japanese under the Chinese influence, with the influx of borrowings. Are there any kun-readings in Japanese that ...
Alexander Z.'s user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
135 views

Markers for size, shape etc. on number words in Japanese

Some languages, such as Japanese, mark number words with suffixes denoting size, shape, and other qualities (e.g., ichi (one) becomes ippon for one book). Why would such a linguistic practice develop?
fred's user avatar
  • 31
4 votes
2 answers
170 views

What methods do languages use to re-introduce the subject of a passive construction?

In German and Spanish (I think), you use the word for 'from'. In Japanese though, I think they use 'ni' (which can either mean 'to' or 'at'). In English we use the preposition 'by', which is rarely ...
user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
325 views

Abbreviations for pinyin and hepburn transliterations?

Are there 2 letter ISO codes for the pinyin or hepburn transliterations? If not, are there non-ISO abbreviations in common use? Thanks.
posfan12's user avatar
  • 163
-2 votes
1 answer
274 views

Is Japanese "subaru" related to Russian "soberu" and Latin "conferre"?

Is Japanese "subaru" related to Russian "soberu" ("I'll put together") and Latin "conferre" ("to bring together")? I think both Latin and Russian words derive from Proto-Indo-European "com bheroa̯" "...
Anixx's user avatar
  • 6,683
2 votes
1 answer
161 views

What is the relationship between perfectivity and the Classical Japanese conjunctive particle "-て" ("-te")?

In Classical Japanese, the auxiliary verb "-つ" ("-tsu") has a perfective function, indicating the completion of an action or process. According to Haruo Shirane's Classical Japanese: A Grammar, "-て" ("...
Catahecassa's user avatar
10 votes
5 answers
17k views

Why do Korean and Japanese sound similar to each other to native speakers of English?

I don't understand why, but Korean and Japanese sound very similar to me, and also to other native speakers of English. I think I once read a comment saying something like "If it sounds like Japanese ...
Golden Cuy's user avatar
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11 votes
2 answers
1k views

Is use of sorting expected and used in East Asian languages (Chinese, Japanese, Korean)?

For an English speaker with 26 characters, the concept of sorting is ubiquitous. If I see a list, I inherently expect it to be sorted by one of the columns, and of course clicking a column to sort is ...
Oliver Williams's user avatar
32 votes
8 answers
23k views

Why do Japanese people have difficulties in pronouncing English?

When I watch Anime, I notice that Japanese English pronunciation is really bad, they twist all the sounds, and they can't pronounce sounds like "L". I think English is the easiest language when it ...
Ichigo Kurosaki's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
327 views

Why are some words to express country names different between Chinese and Japanese?

In some countries, their principal chinese characters are represented differently between Chinese and Japanese. For example, 意 vs 伊 (Italy) 法 vs 仏 (France) 德 vs 独 (Germany) That being said, there ...
Blaszard's user avatar
  • 553
4 votes
1 answer
770 views

What are arguments for and against a common origin of Korean and Japanese?

Now, Korean and Japanese have been proposed to be part of other language families, for instance Altaic, but Altaic is not considered a valid term subterfuged by evidence as much as Sino-Tibetan and ...
Abdul Al Hazred's user avatar
12 votes
4 answers
11k views

Why is Korean considered a language isolate?

According to the Wikipedia article on Koreanic languages: Among extant languages, Korean is considered by most linguists to be a language isolate and by others as part of the widely rejected ...
Alex Kinman's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
470 views

Replacement of the letters in Japanese while compounding words

I've spent some time solving Fakepapershelfmaker NACLO problem, and later at solution I've read that some japanese letters do not require replacement while compounding. In Japanese you should ...
Amir's user avatar
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