Questions tagged [pronunciation]

発音. How the Japanese language i​s pronounced. For questions about which readings to use for particular kanji, use the "readings" tag instead.

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2answers
134 views

Why are some Japanese foreign words spelled with different sounds?

Please consider the following: Warrior is ウォリアー: this vowel sound "a" changes to ”オ" Work is ワーク:this vowel sound "o" changes to "ア" Chariot is チャリオット:this vowel sound "a" stays "ア" Corridor is コリドー:...
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あかさたなはまやらわ mnemonics

What mnemonic phrase / jingle, if any, is used by Japanese children to memorize the あかさたなはまやらわ sequence? Or could you come up with some? To help myself memorize this, I could possibly fashion an ...
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1answer
317 views

Are there any rules to the intonations they are discussing in this video?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TpbOoSbnp5k I rarely if ever see anything like this covered in Japanese textbooks or courses besides the hashi (bridge) vs hashi (chopstick) discussion. Is there no ...
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1answer
186 views

Does「ペーペー」and the “PayPay” digital wallet sound like a ダジャレ? Isn't that weird for marketing?

"PayPay" is a smartphone digital wallet used in Japan. Yet, 「ペーペー」is also a slang term for the 肩書き of 新入社員。I always said my 肩書き was either 「ペーペー」or 「カバン持ち」。 I am so confused. (1) Is "ペーペー" really, in ...
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Pronouncing sumimasen (すみません), implications of extending the -se(せ) and eliding the n(ん)

When pronouncing "sumimasen" (すみません), sometimes native speakers will elide the "-n"(ん) and elongate it, sort of like "sumimaseee~". This is the same and not a conjugation I would assume? Might anyone ...
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1answer
178 views

What does しゅごい mean?

I'm reading a manga and I can't for the life of me figure out what this phrase is supposed to mean; I've never seen it before.
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1answer
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Pronunciation question for consonants k/g and t/d

I was wondering if someone could help me clear up some confusion Sometimes when I hear people speaking Japanese in videos, I hear them swap the k/g consonants, as well as the d/t consonants.. Like ...
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Pronouncing Kanji when combined with other kanji [duplicate]

I have only just started learning Kanji, I know that 中国 means China and is pronounced Chūgoku . However 中 is pronounced differently (naka instead of chū).国 is also pronounced kuni on its own instead ...
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How to say っ by itself [duplicate]

I have seen some interjections and phrases with words such as [えっ] or [あっ]. My question is how you would pronounce this, or if it's just a pause.
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1answer
172 views

ありがとう pronounced with heibangata pitch pattern?

I've always heard a lot of Japanese people pronounce ありがとう as ありがとう{LHHHH}, but I've never actually seen anyone talk about it on the Internet. People always say ありがとう should be pronounced ありがとう{...
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1answer
132 views

How are 'nasalized vowels' pronounced?

I've noticed when listening to some recordings of ん before a vowel, such as 万{まん}円{えん}, that the ん sound tends to be assimulated and almost vanish into the vowel's sound (sounding almost like まーえん). ...
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how to pronounce name in japanese

Would appreciate some help here. The picture shows a nametag that's meant to spell Reina in hiragana, but does the last character look off? Specifically the top right bar. Additionally, do Japanese ...
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1answer
140 views

「実父」's pronunciation

I have always pronounced the word [実父]{じっぷ}, and it seems the dictionaries agree. (jisho.org. Also WWWJDIC, I would put a link here, but it seems the link I get on WWWJDIC is dynamic and the content ...
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1answer
141 views

What is the right pronunciation of 「何にみえますか」

What is the right pronunciation of 「何にみえますか」? Is pronounced 「なんにみえますか」or 「なににみえますか」? Why?
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1answer
375 views

Criteria for reading 物{もつ} or 物{ぶつ}

One of the pronunciation I struggle most is 「物」: more ofthen than not, I misread it in words like 「作物」 and 「薬物」. I know what they mean, but it's likely I misread them by reading 「もつ」 instead of 「ぶつ」 ...
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1answer
158 views

Pitch accent pattern for verb stem + な

I've only ever heard this form be used in the command "待ちな!" (Wait!), but just out of curiosity, I'd like to know what pitch accent rule(s) apply here. I thought I'd heard the above-mentioned phrase ...
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1answer
177 views

Pitch accent for ないで and なくて

When I listen to Japanese people speak, I usually hear them say ないで{HLL} and なくて{HLL}, with the pitch drop always placed on な, no matter the verb. But I might just be hearing things wrong. However, I ...
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2answers
531 views

Do native speakers learn consonant and vowel length easily, or is it difficult?

Just want to ask if this is normal or I am just fighting the wrong way. かっこいい say this word has the final 2 い which shall take 2 length of the i sound. I am struggling to keep trying to speak with 2 ...
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2answers
255 views

Why was on'yomi (音読み) created?

As far as I understand it the Japanese Kanjis are derived from the Chinese ones. This was to introduce a writing system in Japan. But for the on‘yomi reading, the Japanese also took the spoken word ...
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1answer
152 views

pronunciation of 拗音

I have difficulty to pronounce (あ段, お段) 拗音, e.g., きゃ, きょ, ひゃ, ひょ correctly. My Japanese language teacher is a native Japanese. What she taught me is the same that I can find on the Internet. For ...
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1answer
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7色 vs 七色 for rainbow (7 colors vs 7 prismatic colors)

虹は7色だ。 Rainbow has 7 colors. There are 7 colors in rainbow. Question: how to pronounce 7色 to make meaning [7 colors]? Problem: 七色 is not [7 colors]. It is a special scientific term, meaning [7-...
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2answers
225 views

What is the reading of 台北(タイペイ)?

台北 (or 臺北) is the name of Taiwanese city, Taibei, read [tʰaɪ̯³⁵ peɪ̯²¹⁴⁻²¹⁽⁴⁾] in Mandarin. In Japanese, it is normally rendered with the sequence タイペイ. But what is the reading of this sequence? ペイ is ...
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1answer
150 views

Why カザフスタン for Kazakhstan?

Why not カザクスタン ? The Cyrillic word does have a k (but I am not sure whether is is actually pronounced).
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2answers
291 views

Why is テ pronounced as “ti” in パーティ?

If we take the word パーティ, why is テ pronounced as "ti" when in the katakana alphabet it is pronounced "te." Also, why is ィ small? If it was normal sized, wouldn't the pronunciation of the word be the ...
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2answers
210 views

/h/ sound changing in some Japanese counters

I just noticed that the quantifying words that have an initial sound as /h/ such as 本、匹、分 For example: 本 hon /h/ becomes /p/ : 1,6,8,10 /h/ becomes /b/ : 3,?? and ん sound before /b/ becomes /m/ (is ...
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1answer
71 views

Pronunciation of [ 男爵 / だんしゃく ]

I was watching JoJo's Bizarre Adventure where Baron Zepelli introduces himself, and it sounds like he says ”私はZepelliだんしゃんだ”. Here's a link to the scene https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XWaAct40xZ0&...
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Are words with the combinations of ia io and ea eo pronounced the same as iya iyo and eya eyo

I see some words ending with eo or io and I try to pronounce as eyo or iyo but I do not know if that is correct.
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Why do Latin letters have English pronunciations in Japanese?

The Latin letters A–Z are used in Japan today and they each have a name just like in English. Take the first five Latin letters, A–E. Source: https://jisho.org A 【エイ】【エー】 B 【ベー】【ビー】 C 【シー】...
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Which is the more common reading of 仏陀 - ぶつだ or ブッダ?

I realize that 仏陀 is probably more common in writing where the reading is ambiguous anyway, but I am curious to know: do people tend to read it as ぶつだ or ブッダ? For what it's worth, my IME recognizes ...
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3answers
662 views

Why Can't A Name Be Written Literally In Japanese?

My Japanese knowledge is very limited, so I am not good in Japanese alphabet. With the help of an online Japanese name converter, I tried writing a name in Japanese, but the resulting name does not ...
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4answers
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Why is 日本 read as “nihon” but not “nitsuhon”?

If I want to say only 日本 in a sentence then each character is pronounced in its onyomi version isn't it? If this is an exception and one (or all) of the characters is not pronounced in onyomi version ...
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109 views

Why 鼻血 is read as “hanaji” but not “biketsu”?

I thought when 2 kanji characters next to each other we read them in onyomi. Why is this word 鼻血 an exception?
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2answers
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Looking to understand a fantasy name

This is related to Beyblade, regarding a team exclusive to a game that didn't get translated to English. Each blader has their own holy beast to command and I'm not getting the name of one of them. ...
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4answers
865 views

Is it shi or si?

When I chat using romaji, Japanese people will always use si instead of shi, for example yorosiku instead of yoroshiku, siteru instead of shiteru. Do Japanese people actually pronounce shi as si?
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1answer
132 views

Can native Japanese speakers pick up a distinctive accent in people whose first language contains contour tones?

First of all, I am an American, and my native language is American English. My home language or first language, on the other hand, is a contour tonal language, with multiple tones, probably 4 or 5, ...
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Why is Katakana not pronounced Katagana?

I am a beginner in Japanese and I've noticed that when two words are compounded into one word the first letter of the second word changes. hira + kana = hiragana ko + hayashi = kobayashi ori + kami ...
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1answer
173 views

Pronunciation of 上下

上下 has lots of potential pronunciations: じょうげ うえした しょうか かみしも Are there any guidelines on how to know which readings to use? I'm particularly interested in this sentence: 顔が上下に割れるかと思ったほど大きくにっこりして、....
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1answer
462 views

Deriving the “p” and “b” sound from “h”

This question refers to the hiragana notation of different syllables, where you indicate the "soft-spoken" or "hard-spoken" variants of syllables by marking them with a small circle or double strokes. ...
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1answer
175 views

What is the difference between the pronunciation of 「休校【きゅうこう】」and「急行【きゅうこう】」?

「休校【きゅうこう】」と「急行【きゅうこう】」の発音はどう違いますか。 よろしくお願いします!
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2answers
162 views

A grammar issue?

What is the meaning of the "long hyphen," --, a DASH really, for grammar, translation, and punctuation? For example : シャワーヘッド (Shawaheddo)? Thank you
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2answers
112 views

[ターミネーター2] How to pronouce Terminator 2 (name of the movie) [duplicate]

There is a famouse movie by James Cameron "Terminator 2" In English it is pronounced "Terminator two". In Wikipedia I found how the name of this movie is written in Japanese (katakana, of course) [...
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How can I practice to pronunce the Japanese “r”? [duplicate]

How can I practice to pronounce the Japanese "r" sound? Every video I found didn't help me.
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3answers
418 views

Was 術 (as in 柔術) ever pronounced jitsu?

柔術 is often rendered in English-speaking countries (and France, Germany, and Brazil) as "jiu-jitsu" or "ju-jitsu", even though the actual Hepburn romanization is "jūjutsu". Wiktionary's page on 柔術 ...
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1answer
119 views

Is the reading 腹【なか】 neither an on-yomi nor a kun-yomi?

currently trying hard to refresh my Kanji skills and stumbled over お腹 == おなか To my surprise none of the Kanji dictionaries list the reading なか for this Kanji. Only フク and はら. Is there a third ...
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1answer
102 views

Name of the city 都市の名前 vs 市の名前

I feel, that 市の名前 as [name of the city] is somewhat unnatural, but I can not explain to myself why I should use 都市の名前 instead. Jisho says that 市 is a noun and no restriction to use it. Maybe the ...
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1answer
195 views

What does center middle dot in pronunciation transcription might mean

I know only 2 sources (websited) where I can see how to pronounce Japanese words. These sites are OJAD and WaDoku. I like everyting, but in WaDoku transcription they put middle dot, which I do not ...
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2answers
1k views

What constitutes a syllable?

For the sake of Haiku or in general, how are syllables counted in Japanese? Specifically, in the following cases, how are syllables counted? かあ, long vowels - two syllables? きゅ, addition of yō-on - ...
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1answer
271 views

日曜日,the different meanings and pronunciations of 日

I am not sure about the pronunciation rules of kanji in Japanese. I understand that there are several pronunciations for each kanji, and I am wondering how native speakers decide when to use which ...
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1answer
69 views

The pronunciation of the Japanese translation of dictionary

the pronunciation of 辞書 is jisho, however, why does it sound like jishyo in prerecorded pronunciation online?
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1answer
554 views

How to pronounce 0.11% in Japanese?

Sometimes I heard people refer 0.11% as レイテン イチイチ パーセント While others believe レイテン ジュウイチ パーセント is more correct. Which version is more popularly accepted?

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