# How does one pronounce ≒ the symbol for "approximately"?

It appeared simply as "縮尺：≒1/82" and the meaning is quite clear (="approximately 1/82 scale").

Jim Breen's wwwjdic does not seem to contain an entry for the symbol.

jisho.org suggests only おおよそ 《大凡》but not the symbol itself.

Just randomly googling the symbol does not give me an answer in which I could have confidence. At least it's listed here, though without pronunciation:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Approximation#Unicode

I came across it here, if the source is relevant (one needs to download the pdf for the Hayabusa (隼) to see it in the header.

• Let me confirm: Is the question asking "What is ≒ called in Japanese?/ What's the name of ≒ in Japanese?", or "What is ≒ in a math formula read/pronounced in Japanese?" Commented Mar 20, 2021 at 16:43
• I was interested in how to read the exact wording of "縮尺：≒1/82" Commented Mar 20, 2021 at 17:07
• 「しゅくしゃく ニアリーイコール いち　はちじゅうに」 Commented Mar 20, 2021 at 17:07
• Oh! I think 1/82 is 「はちじゅうに[分]{ぶん}のいち」(a fraction), so... it could (strictly?) be 「しゅくしゃく(は)、ニアリーイコールはちじゅうにぶんのいち」, but, hmm I'd probably read it (more casually?) as 「しゅくしゃく(は)、[約]{やく}はちじゅうにぶんのいち」. Commented Mar 20, 2021 at 17:13

We pronounce/read ≒ as 「ニアリーイコール」 in maths class in Japanese schools.

10 ÷ 3 ≒ 3.3
「じゅうわるさん ニアリーイコール さんてんさん」
√2 ≒ 1.414
「ルート に ニアリーイコール いってんよんいちよん」

• I'm intrigued by this. What level of school is this used in? 'Nearly equal' sounds rather childish in English and we would change it to 'approximately equal' as we got more mature. I wonder if something similar happens in Japanese schools, or does ニアリーイコール sounds sophisticated in Japanese since it is foreign derived? Commented Mar 20, 2021 at 17:23
• 中学と高校の数学で、「ニアリーイコール」って言ってた気がします。小学校では出てこなかった気がします。大学ではどうでしょう、私、文系だったから、理系の大学でどうなのか知らないんですけど、月曜に数学の先生に聞いてみます。 Commented Mar 20, 2021 at 17:29
• @user3856370 数学の先生に聞いたら、大学でも「≒」は「ニアリーイコール」って読むのだそうです。「他に読み方ありますか？」って聞いたら、「まあ、『約』とか？」だって。 Commented Mar 23, 2021 at 13:38
• Thank you for taking the trouble to find that out. I really appreciate it. Commented Mar 23, 2021 at 19:11

According to the symbol's Japanese Wiktionary page, the JIS standard assigns to `≒` the common name 「ほとんど等{ひと}しい」.

The quoted english name 「APPROXIMATELY EQUAL TO OR THE IMAGE OF」 which is also mentioned is actually the one defined by the Unicode standard.

I wonder whether `≒` could be pronounced 近似{きんじ} when reading aloud...

Apparently, this symbol is only used in Japan, while its standard international equivalent is `≈`.