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1

Kanji were brought to Japan about 4th centry from China. Hiragana are phonetic characters created from Chinese readings of kanji in around the eighth century in Japan. For example, あ was created from 安 and い was created from 以. Katakana were mainly created by Japanese scholars from Chinese readings of kanji at the same time that hiragana were created. For ...


6

「[新]{しん}メニュー」 is a very common phrase. We say 新ドラマ、新アニメ、新プラン、新ビール, etc. all the time and I do not think anyone finds it "improper". At least, I have never heard a native speaker complaining about it. What is extremely uncommon is that they inserted the 「ウ」 in there. Or is that a typo on your part? We do say 「[新]{あたら}しいメニュー」 as well, but the phrase lacks ...


3

Your example is indeed pronounced 新{しん}メニュー. Because 新メニュー is shorter, and thus more convenient. It's just a common compound noun. If you look up 新{しん} in your dictionary, it should mention that it can be (and very commonly is) used as a noun prefix, unsurprisingly meaning "new". Plenty, but a large share of them are long technical compound nouns such as ...


3

Yi (and other characters) existed in Japanese a long time ago and I found an old katakana sheet that has the missing characters. This image is from 1873: More on this at this Japanese wikipedia page for: ヤ行イ. Also, note that this page has the respective hiragana characters too. In reality, most native Japanese will not be able to read the "classical yi" ...


2

If you look at the Hiragana chart below, you notice that there are no corresponding letters for "yi" and "ye". Those letters do not exist in Japanese (not that we can't pronounce it). (From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hiragana) When we need to write foreign words containing "yi" and "ye", we use イ, and イエ (or sometimes イェ) respectively. A good example ...


3

イン is pretty much the standard way to transliterate Chinese "ying" to kana. Here are some examples: 陶晶瑩 - Taiwanese celebrity Pinyin: Táo Jīngyíng Kana: タオ・チンイン 劉若英 - Taiwanese celebrity Pinyin: Liú RuòYīng Kana: リウ・ルオイン 馬英九 - President of Taiwan Pinyin: Mǎ Yīngjiǔ Kana: either ばえいきゅう (on'yomi of each kanji) or マー・インチウ (direct transcription of what ...


3

I agree that イン is probably the best fit for the limitations of Japanese. Of course, being Chinese, your friend already has a kanji for his/her name, so you could always just use that and write イン as furigana for it. Alternatively -- and I don't know how much this would happen in real life -- you could just use a Japanese pronunciation for the name's ...


2

I think that along with snailboat's answer, some of these can be explained by nasalization occurring in Japanese. Where you perceive a syllable break, e.g. in [men.ju], trying to convert the phonetics to kana doesn't work out, because a final ン is usually nasal, i.e. [menjuː] menu [meɴjuː] メンユー [menʲuː] メニュー Similarly, [pain.æpl̩] / [painæpl̩] ...


1

I basically agree with the 1st 3 paras of Snailboat's answer but to put it differently: If an English word is not pronounced consistently throughout the English speaking world then, even if the spelling is consistent, you cannot predict how it will be pronounced as a loan word. "Schedule" is one example: In the States the "sch" is pronounced to sound ...


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Japanese is full of strange pronunciation of foreign words(most English). Although ability in English is increasing in Japan, it has been quite low especially for a developed exporting nation, and even though there has and still is a lot of interest in other cultures, things are often taken into Japan and used in a way to fit Japanese people. I don't think a ...


6

When words are borrowed in speech, they're generally "repaired" to match the phonology of the target language. In Japanese, that usually means picking the nearest consonant and vowel sounds and adding epenthetic vowels to avoid consonant clusters that aren't allowed (like /str/ → /sutor/), although other methods of repair are occasionally used (e.g. ...


1

My understanding is that until the Meiji era, through the early 1900's, foreign words were most often written in kanji. Perhaps the sudden exposure to foreign cultures and the rise of the merchant class and marketing led to it's emergence as the definitive way to write foreign non-Chinese words. As the script was imported centuries ago, it is possible that ...



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