I’ve been reading about sound change in Japanese and I keep coming across the phrase ‘発音上の’ as in


In the above example, what purpose does ‘上’ serve? Should I read ‘発音上’ or 発音‘上の...’?


This is the suffix 上【じょう】:

じょう 【上】

[一] ...

[二] (接尾)
名詞に付いて、…に関して、…の面で、…の上でなどの意を表す。 「一身-の都合」 「道義-の責任」 「行きがかり-しかたがない」

Since 発音上 is not a single word and you can identify 発音 as a word from the context, the trick would be to look in a monolingual dictionary for definitions of 上 as a suffix. There are only 上【じょう】 and 上【うえ】 and context tells you it would not be the suffix 上【うえ】 (as in 父上).


It is a suffix pronounced as じょう.

According to "A Dictionary of Intermediate Japanese Grammar", page 76:

上: a suffix which indicates the idea of "from the viewpoint of", "for the sake of", "for the reason", or "in terms of"


This film is not good from an educational point of view.

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