I have to make a basic presentation for my typography class and I want to talk about Japanese quotations marks (「」 and 『』).

I want to title it the "meaning in between quotation marks" but in Japanese. I want this title to be a play on words where it will literally mean 「meaning」 or 『meaning』, so it shouldn't be 引用符の意味 (I think).

Google translate gives me 引用符内の意味 or 引用符間の意味 or 引用符の間の意味. Which one do you think this is the best way to say it or do you have a better suggestion? I appreciate if you can provide the romaji so that I won't embarass myself too much during the presentation :).

Thank you for your help in advance.

Edit: For clarification, I'm not a native English speaker and I will be presenting in my native language (not English). It would make more sense that way. So for now, I don't think it is required to know what the title means figuratively in English. I just need to know what it would be in Japanese in the literal sense as mention above.

Edit 2: Adding visualization (same as my comment below). Imagine the quotation marks and the word meaning as physical objects

  • 「 is object A
  • 」 is object A
  • the word meaning "意味" is object B

So how would you literally describe this visualization below?

  • "[object A] [object B] [object A]"

In English, I would describe it as "object B in between object As" or in other words the word "meaning in between quotation marks"

As mentioned above, it is just a play on words which makes more sense in my native language where "meaning in between quotation marks" = "meaning of quotation marks". So the sentence doesn't need to make sense in English.

  • 4
    I'm not even sure what "meaning in between quotation marks" means in English. Do you just mean, "the meaning of the quoted phrase"?
    – A.Ellett
    Commented Mar 26 at 2:44
  • Thank you for replying. For clarification, I'm not an english native and I will be presenting in my own native language. It would make more sense that way. I don't need the title to mean anything figuratively, I just need it in Japanese in the literal sense. Commented Mar 26 at 5:20
  • And I'm not even sure what you mean by "it will literally mean 「meaning」 or 『meaning』."
    – aguijonazo
    Commented Mar 26 at 6:06
  • @aguijonazo I think the intent is to distinguish between "meaning that is contained between quotation marks", and "the word 'meaning', surrounded by quotation marks". Commented Mar 26 at 7:52
  • 1
    I'm just curious. If you are going to give the presentation in your own language and the wordplay works better in it, why do you need to translate it into Japanese? All of the suggestions from Google Translate will be understood but only in the literal sense and no one will get the double meaning. Who is it intended for, anyway? I would think keeping it in your language and enclosing the word for "meaning" with 「 and 」 (possibly in a different color) would create a greater impact on your audience.
    – aguijonazo
    Commented Mar 26 at 11:22

1 Answer 1


Just ignoring most of your contexts,

So how would you literally describe this visualization below?

"[object A] [object B] [object A]"

It would be かっこの間の意味 or 引用符の間の意味 (At least for me, 引用符 rather sounds like Western quotes). It should more or less express, like you asked, there are three objects: 「 and 意味 and 」 in the same way as 本の間の猫 expresses two books and a cat in between.

If it is for a serious translation, my best advice would be forget the word play and try something more faithful to the meaning, but if it is for fun in a one-off presentation, it should be fine.

  • I think your answer is the one I'm looking for. It's just a one off thing and definitely not for formal usage. I'll gladly use it. It was one of the options I got from online translator. Thank you for your effort. And thanks everyone for replying. One last thing, how do I pronounce the 間 from 引用符の間の意味. Is it ma or kan or aida? Commented Mar 26 at 13:03
  • @sassydsasquatch They read, respectively, kakko no aida no imi / in'you-fu no aida no imi.
    – sundowner
    Commented Mar 26 at 13:59

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