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Which is found more often in common words, しょう or しょ?

I tend to think しょう is found more often and is usually placed in the end of the word. On the contrary しょ seems to be placed at the start.

Are these assumptions correct?

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2  
I guess the real question is, "what is the ratio of しょう vs. しょ sounds"? –  Earthliŋ Oct 27 '13 at 12:08
    
You got that right, Earthling! –  dimadesu Oct 27 '13 at 14:10
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"Should I try the long version first?" This is a flagrant opinion question, so I'm voting to close. –  istrasci Oct 27 '13 at 19:08
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Okay guys, edited to be more like "yes or no" type of question. –  dimadesu Oct 28 '13 at 7:08
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3 of 5 close votes were cast before this question was edited to be more objective, and this question has had 5 reopen votes cast (just not at the same time). And notably, istrasci's reasoning doesn't seem to apply to the current version of the question. So I'm going to reopen it tentatively, but the community can of course still vote to close. –  snailboat Nov 14 '13 at 10:29

2 Answers 2

up vote 5 down vote accepted

Simply from etymology I would expect しょう to be far more frequent than しょ. This is because しょ was always しょ historically, while a ridiculously large amount of sounds merged to しょう:

せう せふ しゃう しゃふ しよ etc

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Wow etymology definitely gives an interesting explanation of so many しょう. Thanks alot! –  dimadesu Oct 29 '13 at 19:39

I don't know of any analysis which compares the frequency of しょ and しょう sounds. The suffices 書 and 所 (and 署) are quite frequent, though, and practically any kanji with reading しょう can come at the beginning of a word (e.g. [証書]{しょうしょ}).

The WWWJDIC "kanji" dictionary file contains 52 kanji with reading しょ and 238 with reading しょう, so that'd suggest that "しょう is more frequent than しょ, both at the beginning and at the end" is a better theory, but of course it ignores the above-mentioned suffices and all other kanji with reading しょ, so it can't be a very good theory.

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Thank you @Earthling so a number of kanjis with しょう is bigger. That is nice to know this kind of info. –  dimadesu Oct 28 '13 at 8:18

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