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In the second episode of Watashi no Shiawase na Kekkon, one of the characters has two daughters: one natural that can see supernatural things, and a stepdaughter (which she bullies) that can't; about them, she says this:

いつまで経っても見鬼のけの字も現れない穀潰しとは大違いね

見鬼 is the ability to see the supernatural, and the sentence means something like "She is very different from a useless daughter which no matter how much time passes can't see the supernatural", but I can't understand けの字. I tried looking on Google an on dictionary, but nothing came up.

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    Isn't it just "the letter/symbol け"? Jul 12, 2023 at 18:37
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    Reading your comment I just had a flash: since 見鬼 is けんき, does it mean that it will never appear even the simple け of けんき, meaning somehting like "She will never be able to even have a bit of 見鬼"?
    – Mauro
    Jul 12, 2023 at 18:48
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    That makes sense, yes. I hadn't thought about the on-reading of the characters :) Jul 12, 2023 at 18:53

1 Answer 1

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This けの字 refers to the letter け from 見鬼(んき). XYZのXの字も(ない) is a pattern used to say "(not) even a trace of XYZ". Similarly, you can say "挨拶の「あ」の字も知らない", "あいつには責任感の「せ」の字もない", and so on.

Here's a blog article about this construction:

「~の~の字もない」 http://kokoromi2.cocolog-nifty.com/blog/2019/11/post-3f95ab.html

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    Can it also be used like this? "霊のの字も出ない". 呪 is read like じゅ (one mora), so I assume in cases like that, you can just refer to the whole kanji?
    – firuvi
    Jul 13, 2023 at 12:47
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    @firuvi Yes, じゅ is one sound, so that's perfectly possible.
    – naruto
    Jul 13, 2023 at 13:02

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