I'm trying to translate this sport team name:


but Google keeps correcting this to:


It's obviously difficult to guess which type of horizontal line is meant, but the second character is clearly printed as 亞, not 亜. Is it possible that the one is used as a simplified form of the other in situations where printing complicated characters is difficult?

(Google Translate gives me results like "Toa Gakuen Valley Department" and "Toa Gakuen Ballet Department" and when I accept the suggestion to change to the second version "Toa Gakuen Volleyball Department", which is probably right, because the Toa Gakuen school in Tokyo has a volleyball team, but the writing looks much more like the first version.)

  • 4
    Basically, you got it backwards. 亜 could be considered a simplification for 亞.
    – xuq01
    May 1 '17 at 7:38

Several points

  • the second-to-last character in 東亞学園バレㅡ部 is U+3161 HANGUL LETTER EU (from Korean), it should be ー U+30FC KATAKANA-HIRAGANA PROLONGED SOUND MARK. This is probably why Google Translate doesn't quite know what to do with it.

  • バレー部 is short for バレーボール部 and means "volleyball team/club" (by the way, ballet is written バレエ)

  • 亞 is the kyūjitai (old character form) and 亜 the shinjitai. 亜 has fewer strokes (and simpler strokes) than 亞

    stroke order 亜 and 亞

  • If the name is 東亞, don't let Google tell you otherwise. However, it looks like the school is called 東亜学園. Maybe that's why Google wants to correct it, maybe Google has a tendency to correct kyūjitai to shinjitai. However, if the volleyball team writes their name 東亞学園バレー部, then being a name it shouldn't be corrected.

  • The school translates itself as 東亜学園高等学校 Toa Gakuen High School, so I'd say

    Tōa Gakuen Volleyball Club


亞 is an old style character of 亜.

亞 was used conventionally.
Plural styles were used together with the textbook before the establishment of Chinese characters for daily use in Japan, and unification was not accomplished about a style. Thus, about individual letters, the style considered to be the old style is not necessarily constant. In addition, the old style is available in the present age and may be still used in a company name and a person's name, a novel or comics.


Just to give some more details, I found a question on chiebukuro just about the difference between the two kanji 亞 and 亜.

Let me quote the answer:

亞は亜の旧字体ですね. 1949年に当用漢字字体表というものを 作る以前は「亞」「亜」どちらも使われていましたが 漢字をなるべく単純なものに統一するために 今は亜が使われています. ちなみに、どちらも名前に使うことができます.

So according to this 亞 is just an old form of 亜. Specifically, before the list of daily-use kanji was made in 1949, they were both used. After that list, the one that remains mostly used is 亜 (this was done in order to attempt a simplification of the use of kanji). Notice that in the last sentence it is said that both can be used in names though (which I believe is your case).

Finally, you can check here for a confirmation that 亞 is an old form of 亜:




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