2

I was reading Hunter x Hunter volume 24, when suddenly this thing appeared:

賜{みつ}ぎ物{もの}

Just a bit of context: they are trying to infiltrate the enemy's base, and take advantage of one corrupt individual appetite for young women by sending in an undercover team member dressed up as a regular girl. The team leader (who thus sent the girl in) then uses the above phrase to say something along the lines of

Enjoy your present

I forgot the exact phrase but will add it later if necessary.

My question is why didn't the author use 貢{みつ}ぎ物 / 貢物 but this kanji ? Does it have to do with the current situation the character is in ?

I guess a related question is how do 貢ぐ and 賜る differ in sense ?

2
  • My guess: It's dual meaning. The audience hears 貢ぎ物 (tribute) but the speaker means 賜物 (fruit of our labour). Normally this would be written as 賜物(貢ぎ物) (i.e. 貢ぎ物 as furigana) but the author/editor thought the target audience can't read 貢ぎ物 without furigana aid so they ended up with a hybrid like that.
    – oals
    Oct 29 '15 at 20:39
  • Thank you for this comment ! Maybe it would be appropriate as an answer ? If no one else has a better guess, I will accept it :)
    – Urukann
    Oct 30 '15 at 1:26
1

This is a guess since I haven't read the series and the context you've given is rather fuzzy.

Mangaka sometimes use furigana to employ a spoken word / meaning difference. The usual example is adding the furigana あいつ to someone's name: [太郎]{あいつ}

The spoken word is あいつ but the kanji provide an explanation to the reader that the character means 太郎

I've also seen this example: [過去]{ゆめ}を見ていた。 (from 吸血姫 美夕)

In the situation you describe, from the speaker's point of view the meaning is 賜物 (fruit of our labour -- presumably the time it took to prepare the plan) while the audience (enemy) hears 貢ぎ物 (tribute).

Normally this would be written as [賜物]{貢ぎ物} but since Hunter x Hunter's target audience is rather young (primary school or thereabouts), they might not know how to read 貢ぎ物 and you typically can't add furigana to a furigana to clarify the pronunciation. The author or editor probably realised this, and in their search of a solution they ended up with the hybrid 賜ぎ物

For the dual meaning to work, the audience needs to notice that the word is not spelt with the usual kanji. You did notice it; I'm not so sure about the average reader.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.