Can this word be derived to original Japanese words or is it maybe, like the kanji might suggest, of Chinese origin?

1 Answer 1


Taken from here:



The 杜{ず} of 杜撰{ずさん} represents the poet 杜黙{ともく} from the Song Dynasty. 撰{さん} represents making poems. The poems made by 杜黙{ともく} often did not fit the metre, and this act is thought to be the origin to 杜撰{ずさん}. The explanation in the Chinese 野客叢書{やかくそうしょ} is regarded to be the origin. It is believed that this word came to Japan through Zen Buddhism and used to be ずざん(づざん).

Also from here:

The excerpt from 野客叢書{やかくそうしょ}:

杜默 為詩、多不合律。故言事不合格者為杜撰

and the Japanese translation:

杜黙(ともく)は宋の詩人、「撰」は著作することで、杜黙の作る詩に律(作詩の規則)を外れたものが多かったことから、誤まりが多い著作を意味するようになったという。 (I'm leaving out the translation into English at is pretty much the same as I explained above.)

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