ひらがな. The cursive form of the syllabary used mostly for (but not restricted to) the grammatical features of written Japanese including verb endings and particles, and for native words written without kanji.

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13
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7answers
6k views

Why are there 3 ways of writing in Japanese?

Why are there kanji, hiragana and katakana? Is there a logical reason behind this or just tradition?
2
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2answers
107 views

What does いい です mean in お飲み物は何がいいですか?

Phrase: お [飲]{の}み[物]{もの} は [何]{なに} が いい です か O nomimono wa nani ga ii desu ka? What would you like to drink? What I would like to know is what いい です (ii des) does for the sentence ...
2
votes
2answers
63 views

What is the official word for compound syllabaries in Japanese Hiragana?

I am learning Japanese, and of course my first step has been to learn the Hiragana and Katakana. I am at the point to where I feel comfortable writing and reading in Hiragana and I understand that the ...
0
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2answers
182 views

How is my hiragana hand writing and which one needs to be work on?

How is my hiragana hand writing? I am trying to practice my handwriting.
0
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1answer
301 views

Is my Hiragana good?

This is probably asked a lot around here. I started learning Hiragana a few days ago and this is my progress so far Good? Bad? Give me your thoughts, I'm open to criticism.
1
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3answers
161 views

Is my Hiragana writing legible and easy to read?

I just want to make sure that if I were to be asked to write something out in Hiragana, it would be easy to understand.
4
votes
2answers
139 views

Is it ok to read こみち as komiti?

I think it should probably be pronounced as komichi or komich.
1
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2answers
174 views

Does the ゛ have any use?

Does the ゛ have any meaning in the hiragana alphabet?
0
votes
1answer
179 views

What does なってる mean?

Can anyone tell me what this means? The only definition I could find was "summer vacation" which made no sense in the context. This is what's on ether side of it: これ完全にマウン卜ポジシヨンになってるから!
0
votes
0answers
78 views

What does the second of these two Japanese symbols mean? [duplicate]

The first one is fine but I'm not sure about the second one? The first one is "na" and the second one looks like "shi" on its side, facing down, but is it "shi" or something else?
4
votes
1answer
101 views

Why write「もの」instead of 「物」 or 「者」?

In the following example, it remains unclear to me why the term もの is written in hiragana. あの真っ黒なものは何 Here is a second example, where 優しい is written in hiragana. とてもあの人はやさしい My ...
1
vote
2answers
156 views

Is なんとか なる さ meant to be written in Hiragana and not Katakana?

Good day, I have tattooed the words "nantoka naru sa" in Kana on my right arm and a while ago I was reading some Japanese lessons where it explains that Katakana is used only when you're translating a ...
2
votes
2answers
221 views

Why some tutorials teach writing Japanese numbers with Hiragana when they are actually written with Katakana (as on-yomi) in dictionaries?

I've just began learning some Kanji by looking-up how the numbers are written (and read) and suddenly bumped into confusion while watching some tutorials. I can hear the tutors pronouncing a number in ...
0
votes
1answer
69 views

Trouble working out when the next word starts [duplicate]

I'm studying Kanji from the book "Kanji de manga", In the book they present manga written in hiragana/katakana and replace one word with the Kanji they showcase on that page. However, when I'm reading ...
2
votes
1answer
122 views

Can I use only hiragana when writing words/sentences?

This might seem like a dumb repeated question but I need to confirm 100% so bear with me please. I started learning Hiragana and I can now write the vowels + the K things. I'm really good at ...
0
votes
1answer
2k views

What's better to start with first, hiragana or katakana? [closed]

I'm a beginner in learning Japanese and would like to know what's better to start with first, hiragana or katakana, and why?
1
vote
1answer
90 views

Learning Japanese alphabet [closed]

Konbanwa, I just started learning about Japanese alphabets, and I started with Hiragana, so is it right to start with Hiragana then Katana? and if I learned about the both writing systems which one ...
1
vote
1answer
95 views

When to use 九 vs きゅう?

I am new to this site so my apologizes if this question is a bit ridiculous. However, I was informed that the kanji for 9 (九) is pronounced differently than the hiragana (きゅう) based on use. The ...
3
votes
0answers
142 views

How has Japanese kanji and kana usage changed since 1945

How has the percentage of writing using each script changed since 1945? With script reform, increasing influx of loanwords, and stylistic choices, several factors affect how much certain parts of the ...
8
votes
3answers
857 views

The role of hiragana when there is a relevant kanji?

If I don't know the kanji of a thing but I know the hiragana of it, can I just write the hiragana if I have to write it down? Is it a free choice? Or some rules or social formalities?
1
vote
1answer
196 views

Learning, where to start? [closed]

No, i'm not gonna ask you for tutorials, websites, books. I've already started learning Japanese, i know a few words and can type them (well, the Japanese driver just puts the Japanese characters ...
7
votes
6answers
910 views

learning order for kana?

I'm trying to use some flash cards to learn the kana (hirigana first, but both in time), and there's simply too much for me to learn at once. Is there a recommended or practiced learning "order" or ...
15
votes
2answers
13k views

When should I replace kanji with hiragana?

When should I write 海山 and when should I write うみやま?
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Is my hiragana writing understandable?

I've started to begin writing hiragana but I've seen many ways of writing them, usually I'm able to read the different ways of writing them but it keeps bothering me sometimes how mine and what I see ...
1
vote
1answer
130 views

Why is やっぱり (yappari) spelled the way it is? [duplicate]

I started learning Japanese very recently. The spelling of やっぱり (yappari) seems odd to me. The second letter in やっぱり is tsu in hiragana (っ) which is not pronounced. Why?
8
votes
1answer
306 views

Font used to create handwriting worksheets by primary teachers to teach Hiragana

I'm confused by all the different of fonts that can be used to learn to write Hiragana (e.g. the end loop of き may be closed or not). I understand that it is usually related to the difference between ...
8
votes
1answer
940 views

Legal characters for first names include: hiragana, katakana, jinmeiyo and joyo kanji. What about latin letters?

Is it legal for parents to give to their child a first name with latin letters (romaji, I guess), instead of using katakana, hiragana, or kanji? For example, if Japanese parents want to give their ...
1
vote
2answers
115 views

Are there words still containing を either officially or colloquially?

I used to work in a Japanese restaurant where the owner and his wife always wrote 「かつを」 rather than 「かつお」. I thought this was kind of cool, so I looked it up. The only information I could find was ...
-2
votes
2answers
255 views

Is it hard to write Japanese? [closed]

I see the Japanese symbols, but never asked myself how hard is to write using these symbols. It seems very inviable. How do you guys do when writing at Japanese? Is it really harder than, for example, ...
4
votes
1answer
497 views

Why is “Yamata no Orochi” written in katakana?

In the game Okami, the demon Yamata no Orochi is written here, and also in a separate game here as ヤマタノオロチ, not やまたのおろち. Even the particle の is in katakana. I'm curious as to why this is. I know that ...
5
votes
1answer
232 views

Why is hiragana used in the middle of this compound word?

I saw this article on Gizmodo Japan: だれもがスマホの便利さを享受できる第一歩。視覚障がい者がiPhone操作を学べるアプリ Obviously, this is 視覚障害者 (or possibly, 視覚障碍者). It is in the title of the article, as well as several places ...
4
votes
2answers
6k views

Can Hiragana or Katakana stand alone?

Writing Japanese requires a mix of Kanji and Hiragana, usually some Katakana as well. I have read that some Kanji characters can be replaced with Hiragana characters for easier writing. My question ...
0
votes
2answers
440 views

Why are there multiple katakana readings for a single kanji?

When I look at a kanji word I see one, or multiple Hiragana pronunciations (or should I call it translation?) - sometimes the pronunciations are for different kanjis, but that's not the question. I'...
2
votes
1answer
292 views

Rosetta Stone's usage of kana for words instead of kanji

As I use Rosetta Stone to learn Japanese, I only use the Kanji mode (except when I forget the reading for a kanji and then flip it briefly to furigana mode). However, I've found that for some reason ...
5
votes
2answers
333 views

Why are a high proportion of basic Japanese words written in hiragana?

Sometimes it seems like a lot of basic Japanese words are typically written in hiragana rather than kanji. By "basic", I mean pleasantries that are probably the first thing non-native speakers learn ...
3
votes
1answer
120 views
2
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1answer
519 views

Understanding hiragana-only texts in videogames

I've been reading since a long time ago that reading hiragana only texts is quite difficult or frustrating because you don't know where a word begins or ends, I understand that and the importance of ...
1
vote
1answer
185 views

Why do さ and ざ look the same except for the little strokes on the side?

I am learning hiragana and I am looking at sa, shi, su, se, so, and za, ji, zu, ze, zo. The characters look the same except the "z" characters have little strokes on the side of the character. Why is ...
0
votes
1answer
371 views

Should I start with Hiragana, Katakana or Kanji? [closed]

I want to start learning to read Japanese (I already know romaji) and I was wondering which writing system would be better to start with. Or should I start all at the same time?
1
vote
1answer
245 views

Intentional hiragana transcription for foreign names

Is it possible and acceptable to transcript foreign names into hiragana instead of katakana for aesthetic or other personal purposes? How would Japanese people judge this choice? Would they perceive ...
10
votes
3answers
17k views

What are the differences/characteristics between katakana, kanji and hiragana?

I know that romaji is the conversion from those to the roman alphabet, but what are the differences or characteristics between katakana, kanji, and hiragana? Are they used on a different context? Is ...
10
votes
8answers
2k views

What are the advantages/disadvantages of writing in romaji instead of in kanji and kana?

Romaji is somewhat of a conversion from kanji and kana to the Roman alphabet. What are the disadvantages of learning only or mostly romaji aside from being unable to read/write in kanji? I don't ...
6
votes
3answers
719 views

How does one transcribe the romaji “ō”?

I use The Kodansha Kanji Learner's Dictionary, which describes pronunciation in romaji instead of kana. I never learned romaji in a classroom, and generally only use it when reading this dictionary. ...
22
votes
4answers
15k views

Why was both katakana and hiragana created?

Nowadays, katakana tends to be used for gairaigo and onomatopoeia, while hiragana tends to be used for native Japanese words. This is a slight simplification - more information is available here. ...
-1
votes
2answers
148 views

What is the difference between 会社 and かいしゃ? [duplicate]

I'm a beginner in Japanese language. I'm confused as to where I should use kanji or hiragana. For example, "Company" is written as 会社 in kanji かいしゃ in hiragana What is the difference between ...
4
votes
2answers
682 views

What does ちょーなー mean?

ファイナルがんばって!終わったらデートしてちょーなー In that sentence. Is the person saying date me or just simply, "go on date"? And what does cho na mean? Thanks
4
votes
2answers
339 views

Pronounciation of the hiragana け and か

I have just started learning hiragana, and am confused about the pronunciation of some of them. I have heard some pronunciation guides for け which say it should sound like kay, and some which say it ...
5
votes
2answers
684 views

Rosetta Stone uses は instead of わ

Just started learning japanese again. My college offers no class on this so I am learning on my own. I have been using Rosetta Stone on and off again for awhile now. One this I have noticed is that ...
34
votes
1answer
9k views

Why are the particles “は” (ha⇒wa), “へ” (he⇒e), and “を” (wo⇒o) not spelled phonetically?

As far as I know only three words (or particles) have irregular, non-phonetic spelling in Japanese: "は" - The topic particle is pronounced "wa" but the kana is otherwise pronounced "ha" "へ" - The ...
4
votes
1answer
237 views

When is “事” used instead of こと for past experiences?

In the "ことがあります" construction about past experiences, when is "事" used, and when is "こと" used? The textbook used in class uses "こと": 六本木の おんせんに 行った ことがあります。 If it wanted to use "事" instead of "...