カタカナ. That form of the Japanese kana syllabary which is not cursive and is most commonly used for (but not restricted to) writing words borrowed from other languages.

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68 views

Why small version of katakana ヵ is used in a word 二ヵ国語

Why do they use sometimes small version of katakana ヵ 'ka' in a word 二ヵ国語 (nikakokugo -bilingual)? For me, more intuitive form could be 二か国語. Katakana characters in small forms other than ya, yu, yo, ...
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?
7
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3answers
345 views

Why is there a ツ in 四ツ谷?

When I stopped at Yotsuya (四ツ谷) Station this summer, I noticed a katakana tsu (ツ) in the station name. Is there a reason why the katakana character is used (instead of a hiragana one)?
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1answer
57 views

Why is it that Neptune's name is written as ネプテューヌ and not ネプチュヌ?

The title of Hyperdimension Neptunia game in Japanese is written as 超次元ゲイム ネプテューヌ. My question is, why Neptune is written as such? Shouldn't the "tu" in Neptune be be written as "tyu" (チュ)since it is ...
0
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0answers
105 views

Why is the name Tokiya written in katakana?

The name Tokiya is written トキヤ which would imply it's of foreign origin but I'm not having any luck uncovering the origin or meaning of the name. It seems to be somewhat traditional. Ideas?
2
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1answer
118 views

Meaning of kaomoji: ヨロ(`・ω・´)スク!

I’ve encountered this kaomoji: ヨロ(`・ω・´)スク! quite a few times already: However, I’m stumped as to what it could mean. I have noticed the half-width katakana「ヨロ」and「スク」, but am unclear on ...
4
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1answer
89 views

「星のカービィ」- Why ィ and not ー?

The Nintendo character Kirby's name in Japanese is 「星のカービィ」, pronounced "Hoshi no Kābī". For the カ, a ー is used for extending the vowel sound. For the ビ, though, a small イ is used. I thought the ...
12
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3answers
248 views

Why is this katakana not reversed?

Just saw this image about Nintendo on Kotaku: Clearly the company name, description, and location are written in traditional right-to-left orientation. Even かるた is right-to-left. So why is トランプ ...
0
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1answer
143 views

Japanese for “Dami Im”

How would I translate Dami Im's name into Japanese? Im was born in South Korea (her name in Korean is 임다미), but moved to Australia when she was nine. "Dami" is her given name, and "Im" is her surname,...
2
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1answer
77 views

What is the meaning ウソ & 誰向 in this sentence

I've been wondering about the different usage for USO in Japanese. Recently I bumped in this little text: 多分いつも以上に誰向けだか分からない内容になってます 自分の好きなものにウソをついてはいけない松野で! My only issue here is with 誰向 and ...
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2answers
157 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 ...
9
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3answers
939 views

What “non-standard” katakana are commonly used?

I know about the "standard" special katakana, like ファ fa, ディ di, ヴ vu, etc. However, I keep running into others I can't find on any list, including the ones in What special kana are used to write ...
2
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2answers
222 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 ...
1
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1answer
91 views

Use of ン in place of の

家ン中でさか立ちやって障子ブッこわして... I was doing headstands in the house and wrecked the door and... Presumably ン is a contraction of の. Why is it written in katakana? I guess it's adding some kind of emphasis; ...
3
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1answer
89 views

Correct romanization for ベオウルフ (Beowulf) and the use of ō

I want to know the correct romanization for ベオウルフ. For me, it's Beōrufu, because the pronunciation of Be-o-wulf has a long vowel (oo/ou/ow/oh). However, some people discord for being a foreign name.
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1answer
154 views

Recognizing a Kanji?

One of my friends is translating some stuff, and he told me he needs "a second opinion for this one since he's having troubles to identify the first one". I know the second one is だ, but I really can'...
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4answers
880 views

Correct kana for João

I am Portuguese, and my name is João, which has a peculiar pronunciation that is very difficult for foreign people. It is the Portuguese equivalent to the English John, but the pronunciations are very ...
4
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1answer
279 views

Why is Toyota typically written in Katakana? (トヨタ)

Presumably, as a Japanese name, it should be written in Chinese characters or in hiragana.
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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?
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2answers
374 views

Can someone help me determine what this SFX/onomatopoeia is?

Here's an image of it: It kind of looks like ダダ (da da) to me, but then I'm not sure what to make of the last mark. Could someone offer his insight, please?
5
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4answers
324 views

Why do some loanword sounds get “contracted” when katakanized, but not others?

Not sure the best way to word this. Why is it that some sounds from a loanword get combined down to a shorter or different sound while other do not? Here are some examples: Shortened, but sound ...
4
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1answer
113 views

Hikaru no Go Manga - dialogue question

So this is a sentence I picked from Hikaru no Go, Vol. 1, that I am reading. どれもこれもパツとしないなあ What does パツ mean in this sentence and how do you usually find those kind words? When I searched on ...
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1answer
91 views

What does モンロス mean?

It seems to be used as a na-adjective, but I couldn't find the meaning anywhere.
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1answer
219 views

Meaning of トッツケ on a house plan

Same as with my question about a Kanji I tried to identify on a bad image source, I have a katakana word I need to understand / translate. The word reads トッツケ, as marked in this image: I tried to ...
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2answers
676 views

Why did の disappear from 山手, but in 御茶ノ水 it's in katakana?

I realize that very likely the answer to this question is likely to be something along the lines of "that's just the way it is", but I thought it worth asking to see if there were some insights that ...
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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 ...
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1answer
394 views

What is the katakana of STAR WARS?

スター・ワーズ? Sutaa Waazu? スター・ウォーズ? Sutaa uoozu?
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1answer
135 views

What would be the best katakana for this book title?

I'm trying to write about a Spanish book in Japanese. I'm a beginner at Japanese so have patience. The English title is 'Chronicle of a Death Foretold'. クロニックル・オ・エー・デス・フォートールド I'm not sure on the ...
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3answers
308 views

Why the random katakana in 「すみっコぐらし」?

Some of you may be familiar with the San-X line of characters called すみっコぐらし. The shtick is that they're timid and like "living (ぐらし) in the corner (すみっこ)" I know katakana is frequently used for ...
3
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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 ...
3
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0answers
211 views

How to translate historical names which don't necessarily have an equivalent in Japanese?

What is the acceptable procedure for writing proper names in Japanese academic papers when you don't know the official Japanese translation or the katakana for it? Is there an expectation that all ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

How would one emulate capitalized letters in Japanese?

Capitalized letters look like I'M SHOUTING AT YOU. How would you reproduce this effect in Japanese? I don't think any of the obvious choices, using カタカナ instead of 漢字 or ひらがな, using punctuation, e....
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6answers
8k views

Why are katakana preferred over hiragana or kanji sometimes?

I noticed that "dame", which means "not good" or "don't do that", is sometimes written in manga as katakana. I was wondering, is it because katakana is used to express a strong feeling? Sometimes, ...
6
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1answer
250 views

What does it mean to write wasei-eigo and gairaigo in Romaji?

Wasei-eigo and most Gairaigo (especially in a text or sentence as opposed to being by itself) is usually written in Katakana (イメージ, ジュース, スマート,パンツ,アベック). However, there are times that have seen some ...
0
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1answer
127 views

What does “fūtsu” mean?

This is from Yuki-onna: Mosaku no kao ni iki wo fu-tsu to fukikaketa. The "fuutsu/fu-tsu" is written in katakana and is most likely an onomatopoeic word, related to breathing. It's not essential ...
3
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3answers
353 views

Why is Eden written as エデン in Japanese?

I just started watching "Eden of the East" and noticed that the Katakana used for Eden was エデン. I'm wondering why isn't it instead イデン which would be pronounced the same way as in English (which I was ...
4
votes
2answers
169 views

Is マラソン always 42.195 km?

ALC translate the Japanese マラソン into the English "marathon", which the English Wikipedia says has an official distance of 42.195 kilometres. Is マラソン always 42.195 km? Or has the Japanese word a ...
2
votes
1answer
115 views

Why would the Japanese transliteration from Greek Χριστος be spelled as ハリストス instead of キリストス?

Although it's not as common as キリスト, ハリストス is seen in the name of Japan's Orthodox Church. But why ハリストス if the pronounce of the Greek Χριστος is khristós (with a clear kri sound)? There is キリストス too, ...
4
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1answer
564 views

Cheering Japanese (volleyball) team (ゴーリゴーリ)

Watching Volleyball World Cup on TV now, I started to wonder where does the cheering 「ゴーリゴーリ」 come from? Seems to be independent of which team serves, but is more loud when Japanese hold the ball. Is ...
3
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0answers
180 views

Meaning of トルネル is actually misspelling of トンネル? [closed]

I need to know what トルネル means in the following sentence from a manga I'm reading (slashes are where the line-breaks are): このトルネルから / 出る! The katakana is throwing me off. Is it one or two words? Is ...
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1answer
1k views

= sign in a katakana name

I was surprised when I came across this Wikipedia page: アーシュラ・K・ル=グウィン Does someone knows what that = sign is? I can see it works as a separator like 「・」 Is it simply an alternative?
3
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1answer
169 views

Confusion regarding writing a word in Kanji and Katakana

In the One Piece manga, it's quite common to see the names of character's attacks written in both Kanji and Katakana. Take as examples: Gekko Moriah's Doppelman (影法師(ドッペルマン) Dopperuman, literally ...
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1answer
196 views

What does the word 「いいんスよ」 mean?

Here is the conversation that includes the word. A: そんな つめてえこといわないで...   ひと目{め}でいいんスよ ほんのちょいとあうだけでいいんだから B: だめっていったら だめーっ And I'm curious why the syllable 「ス」 in the word has to be ...
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0answers
115 views

What is the frequency of katakana in writing? [closed]

I'd like to know how frequently each katakana character is used in writing, but I've been unable to find anything through googling, except this table which lists the frequency of hiragana characters. ...
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1answer
91 views

Katakana that I can't get right

"渡辺さんってサブラの?" - what could this mean? Just can't catch the meaning of "サブラ". Help please.
1
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1answer
197 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 ...
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1answer
51 views

Where can I find full katakana combinations list?

Katakana have some combinations beyond low ャ, ュ and ョ that uses low ァ, ィ, ゥ, ェ, and ォ. But I can't find complete list of such combinations. Where are lists like http://goo.gl/Lai88W available, but ...
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6answers
911 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 ...
8
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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 ...
6
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3answers
3k views

Why doesn't Japanese have a special Katakana form for “hu”?

They have created many new Katakana words such as ファ フィ ヴァ ヴィ ティ テゥ to write foreign sounds. But why didn't they create a new combination for "hu" such as ハゥ or ホゥ? Instead they use the same kana for "...