My textbook (JFZ series) gives the word bed as ベッド which makes sense as the western bed (on legs) wouldn't have existed in Japan a long time ago.

The dictionary also gives 床 and 寝.

I presume young people say ベッド, if not please correct me.

What would old people call a western bed ?

All related info welcome.


1 Answer 1


If you mean physical bed, then it's always ベッド.

床{とこ} is only used in idioms like 床に就く meaning go to bed. 寝 should be mentioned similarly because go to bed can be translated as 寝る. 寝 itself means more to sleep than furniture for sleeping.

  • So would old people also all say ベッド ? Would they ever call it anything else ?
    – Kantura
    Commented Mar 13, 2023 at 11:26
  • 1
    @Kantura Yes. Suppose someone is 100 years old now. S/he was 22 yo when the war was over. This means s/he spent most of her/his life in Japan where more or less American culture is dominant. It's fairly unlikely s/he doesn't know the word ベッド. Anything else is wrong as a word to refer to Western beds. SImply older people don't sleep in bed. They use futon.
    – sundowner
    Commented Mar 13, 2023 at 12:50
  • 1
    There's 寝台, but it usually means a bed in trains.
    – sundowner
    Commented Mar 13, 2023 at 13:35
  • It is interesting to note here that a surprisingly large amount of people, in all ages, will say ベット instead of ベッド, even though the former strictly speaking means "bet".
    – a20
    Commented Mar 15, 2023 at 6:30
  • @a20 I could be wrong, but it seems to me that it's unusual in native Japanese words to have a sokuon followed by a voiced consonant. So they may just find it awkward or unfamiliar to pronounce. Commented Mar 15, 2023 at 6:57

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