I have a doubt about the correct way of writing my name in katakana. My name is Giulio, it is an Italian name. When I started learning Japanese, my teacher wrote it as ジュリオ. However, later I found a book in which my name was written as ジューリオ. Searching the internet, I've found both instances, for example:

  1. ジュリオ:

  2. ジューリオ:

Looking here, I see that ジュリオ is used more often than ジューリオ. Personally, since I read it in a book, in a section dedicated to the Italian names in katakana, I've always used ジューリオ.

What do you think about it?


1 Answer 1


Based on my experience, my opinion is that you can choose how to write it.

Similarly to you, my name can be written in katakana either with or without the long vowel (ー). And I can also find precedents where my name has been translated both with and without it. Personally, I like the way it sounds better without the long vowel so I just use that one. I've used that spelling for years with no problems. Since there are precedents for both ways of spelling your name I think neither one is incorrect. (Just make sure that you pick only one of them and use it for all official paperwork. You don't want to be in a position where you have a different name on your visa then on your bank account/employment contract/etc.)

Keep in mind that this is not the case for katakana words that aren't your name. For example ビル (building) and ビール (beer) are very different depending on whether you stretch out the ビ. All (or almost all) katakana place names (like アメリカ or シカゴ) have one correct way of spelling them. And if someone already has their katakana name spelled in a certain way (e.g. for Giulio Andreotti it is spelled ジュリオ) then it would be incorrect to spell it differently when referring to that person.

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