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Regarding the Japanese word musubu (as opposed to the kanji 結, which Yang Muye does an excellent job of explaining), I must side with naruto on this one. The underlying idea does not appear to be the tying, so much as the knot: something that comes together as a result of some process -- be it tying string, or growing a nodule, or coalescing from the void. ...


4

I checked an Old Chinese corpus. The Kanji 結 was used in the sense of to form an abstract relationship about 2500 years ago, as in 結怨, 結親, 結好, etc. It could also be used intransitively, like 怨結, 恩結, 気結, 冤結, etc., which sound like to clump/condense/congeal, but it only applied to abstract emotions. It acquired the meaning to bear no later than 400 AD. It ...


3

I think the meaning is derived from the tie between stems and fruit, also in the case of apples or oranges. Fruit is born from stems, so there are necessarily some ties between them, regardless of whether the ties are apparent or not. You can use 実を結ぶ ( or more formally 結実する ) not only in a physical sense but also in a metaphorical sense "to have a ...


3

類語例解辞典 says 結ぶ in 実を結ぶ is "まとめて形にする、完成させる". http://dictionary.goo.ne.jp/leaf/thsrs/1221/m0u/ また、「実を結ぶ」「焦点を結ぶ」「夢を結ぶ」のように、まとめて形にする、完成させる意もある。 この意味の英語だと integrate という単語が tie/bond とも似た意味があるように思います。 EDIT I do not believe this "結ぶ" is "binding a fruit with a branch or a stem". When I say "実を結ぶ", I imagine a fruit which grows by itself to be mature, but I ...


5

This is a relatively rare word! It has only one result in BCCWJ, and I couldn't find a definition for it in any of the seven monolingual dictionaries I checked. However, I did find it mentioned in the definition for 熟す in 明鏡国語辞典, where it's given as a synonym: ⑤ことばとことばが分かちがたく結びついて、熟語や慣用的な言い回しを作る。熟合{じゅくごう}する。また、新奇だったことばが一般に行われるようになる。 ...



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