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6

That is because the cursive script of the kanji 「川」 kind of looks like 「つ」. It should look even more like 「ツ」.


3

Some Japanese words are often written in katakana when people want to emphasize X-as-an-international-word or X-as-known-to-foreigners feelings. カイゼン ニッポン ツナミ ニンジャ, テンプラ, ゲイシャ, フジヤマ, ... ヒバクシャ is occasionally the subject of this phenomenon (e.g. 世界ヒバクシャ展, 国際ヒバクシャ医療センター), but in general, it's normally written in kanji. Depending on what and to whom you ...


2

Quite a bit more sophisticated than the "alphabet song", there is a wonderful poem by 北原白秋 (Hakushū Kitahara) called 五十音. It goes like this 五十音 [水馬]{あめんぼ}赤いな。ア、イ、ウ、エ、オ。 [浮藻]{うきも}に[小蝦]{こえび}もおよいでる。 柿{かき}の木、栗{くり}の木。カ、キ、ク、ケ、コ。 [啄木鳥]{きつつき}、こつこつ、枯{か}れけやき。 [大角豆]{ささげ}に酢{す}をかけ、サ、シ、ス、セ、ソ。 その魚{うお}[浅瀬]{あさせ}で刺{さ}しました。 ...


1

It could be because 被 and 爆 are not part of Kyoiku Kanji. Kyoiku Kanji are the Kanji that are taught from 1st to 6th grade in Japanese elementary schools, and represent the Kanji that "everyone is supposed to know". On Japanese TV, when non-Kyoiku Kanji appears in subtitles it will usually either have Furigana above the Kanji or be in Katakana. So depending ...


1

There are actually three candidates for the origin of つ and ツ. One is 州, which in the Jiankang dialect was pronounced "zhōu". Zhōu → tsu (origin of kana) → shuu (modern on'yomi). The next is 川, which is generally pronounced "chuan" in Chinese. Chuan → tsuan → tsu (origin of kana) → sen (modern on'yomi). Yet another argument is that the kana are derived ...



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