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Questions tagged [compounds]

複合語. Words formed by putting two or more words or other elements together.

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27
votes
1answer
3k views

Rules or criteria for 連濁: Voiced or unvoiced syllables in compound words

Examples first. 空 {そら}. Almost all compound nouns for which 空 is the second component pronounce it as ぞら zora: 青空 {あおぞら} 夜空 {よぞら} 星空 {ほしぞら}. There is at least one exception though: 美空 {みそら}. 蕎麦 {...
6
votes
2answers
519 views

the omission of an implied “の” creates the appearance of a 四字熟語{よじじゅくご}?

I believe that www.yojijukugo.com has a pretty thorough list of 四字熟語? Is there a better site? However, I know that I've seen a lot of 4, or more, adjacent kanji that are not listed as 熟語。An example ...
8
votes
2answers
328 views

Why isn't 日本料理 written as 日本の料理?

Both 日本 and 料理 are nouns but why aren't they concatenated with の? I think it should be written as 日本の料理 rather than 日本料理.
17
votes
2answers
583 views

Exceptional compounding forms

There are a number of Japanese words which have distinct compounding forms: -a/-e alternation: 天・雨、酒、上、風、目 — many examples. -u/-i alternation: 神([神]{かむ}[集]{つど}ふ)、月([月]{つく}[読]{よみ}) -o/-i alternation: ...
6
votes
3answers
497 views

有り難う vs 有難う — Is this the same word?

Do both these words mean "thank you"? If both mean thank you why are they spelled differently? Is one more formal than the other?
2
votes
1answer
356 views

What does かけ mean in こわれかけのオルゴール?

If こわれかけのオルゴール was 壊れかけのオルゴール, 壊れ would be the stem of 壊れる, and かけ would probably be a noun. Since I'm just learning Japanese, I don't understand where かけ comes from. What meaning does かけ have in ...
8
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1answer
2k views

Can kanji compounds be formed arbitrarily?

I will take 客 as an example: Can 客 form a compound with 席, 娟, and all the other thousands of Japanese 漢字? If I put 席客, but not 客席, will the meaning be different? Or will it just have no meaning? Or ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

The difference between 辞書 and 字引

My dictionary lists both 辞書{じしょ} and 字引{じびき} as simply, "Dictionary." On tatoeba.org I can only find example sentences of 字引 where it is used in the phrase: 生き字引 = A walking dictionary Example: ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Does 数独{すうどく} really mean “single number”?

I've never actually played a sudoku puzzle (I know, I live in a cave!). I just saw the word written in kanji somewhere, which rekindled my interest. Wikipedia states: The puzzle was popularized ...
19
votes
3answers
4k views

Are all kanji compounds considered words?

A friend once commented to me that Japanese has a larger vocabulary than English. I said I didn't think it did, because it wasn't really accurate to call all kanji compounds "words". My friend said I ...
18
votes
2answers
207 views

What are the nuances between these three terms for intelligence: 知恵 [ちえ], 知能 [ちのう], 知性 [ちせい] ?

In particular which one is closer to the idea of "ability to reason over things" as a quality of someone in particular? What I believe is that 知識 on the other hand is closer to "knowledge" and "...
7
votes
2answers
374 views

人 - on'yomi ニン or ジン rule of thumb

I sometimes have trouble figuring out what on'yomi 人 has in unfamiliar jukugo, and was wondering whether there was any kind of rule-of-thumb for figuring it out, assuming it is the only character ...
3
votes
1answer
581 views

How to parse “あけぐち”?

I'm working out my Japanese by trying to read everything around me, including food packages. On my milk carton written inside a large arrow pointing to the spout is "あけぐち" in hiragana. Obviously ...
5
votes
2answers
125 views

Abbreviating sets of compounds with leading characters in common

I recently asked a question about on- and kun-yomi and in building the title guessed at how the two compounds involved could be contracted; landing on 「音・訓読み」. Is this indeed the correct way of ...
2
votes
1answer
332 views

General guidelines for choosing 訓読み vs. 音読み in kanji reading

I am trying to come up with general rules for kanji reading. So far I have the following down: Compound kanji words are read as on'yomi Single kanji words are read as kun'yomi Verbs composed ...
7
votes
2answers
898 views

Does Japanese have morphemes that span two kanji?

I read once (in this comment by Victor Mair on Language Log) that Chinese has single morphemes that span two hanzi. The example given was the Chinese word pútáo 葡萄. At the time, I assumed it applied ...
1
vote
1answer
527 views

Size adjectives and prefixes

I know some size adjectives like 小さい (small), 大きい (big), and 並 (normal). Does anyone have a list of other size adjectives: something that could describe things ranging from micro things like Legos to ...
0
votes
1answer
322 views

meaning of 名種設定? [closed]

A friend of mine asked me to give him a quick translation of an app he downloaded. One of the buttons in the main menu had this 名種設定 written. I wasn't able to find what it means.