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'Hikarian' (full name '超特急ヒカリアン') is a Japanese anime that I was in fond of when I was a child, but I have no idea what does 'hikarian' mean. Oxford dictionary tells me that 'hikari' has only one meaning - light, and in wiki I found that 'hikari' is a kind of train service in Japan, which makes lots of sense for me to understand 'hikarian'. Now the issue is that what does the ending 'an' mean in 'hikarian'? Does the word 'hikarian' make any sense?

P.S. As you may notice in the full name that 'hikarian' is the only katakana, is it supposed to be a name of a character?

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    I'm wholly unfamiliar with the anime, but I wonder if it might be a half-pun on the English suffix "-an", as in "Paris > Parisian"? Commented Jul 29, 2014 at 22:44
  • Great point! Why didn't I think of that -_-! You have nice intuition though.
    – booksee
    Commented Jul 30, 2014 at 16:20

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"Hikarian" is a proper noun, and unique to this anime. Ordinary dictionaries don't have this word.

In the Wikipedia article, I can see almost all of the characters are named after Japanese trains or famous stations. English Wikipedia article has many links to the original Japanese trains.

According to the Japanese article, "Hikarian" is the name of a planet (ヒカリアン星【せい】)(星=star) and the name of aliens (humanoids) living in that planet. The main heroes in the anime seem to be all Hikarians. So I think the ending "-an" is English suffix "-an", as in American or christian. The word ヒカリアン was created by someone to mean "people in Hikari planet".

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  • Thanks a lot for this elaborate answer. BTW, I'm curious about the article you mentioned about Hikarian planet. Is it an article in textbook known to public or a research article accessible to only experts?
    – booksee
    Commented Jul 30, 2014 at 16:27
  • I don't know this anime, and I'm just introducing what's written in Wikipedia. Japanese Wikipedia clearly says Hikarians are from ヒカリアン星 (Hikarian star).
    – naruto
    Commented Jul 30, 2014 at 17:00
  • All right, I didn't notice that. After read the wiki page you cited, I have convinced myself that 'hikarian' is a fictitious word, as well as that planet. Anyway, it's really interesting and I do like it.
    – booksee
    Commented Jul 30, 2014 at 19:41

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