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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161 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
859 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
102 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
60 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
262 views

Looking Up Whether 御 is お or ご

Is there a good way to look up whether a 御 prefix is お or ご for a word? I know there is the Chinese origin versus Japanese origin thing (mentioned here). But is there a way to look up for a certain ...
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0answers
99 views

Listening, I mistake R for any of L, R or even D. Is there any exercise to improve my ability to hear this sound correctly?

I'm learning Japanese at an advanced age, and I'm having difficulty hearing R. Depending on the speaker, I hear one of three different consonants: R, or L but also it can sound like a D. In the first ...
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1answer
503 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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116 views

“z” sound, which to choose?

I've read about if "z" sound is pronounced /z/ or /dz/ and found the answer here that: Typically, though not consistently, [dz] occurs at the beginning of a word or in the middle of a word ...
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73 views

Writing conventions / pronounciations for words with っ

I'm currently trying to figure out on how to do karaoke for some songs and I got a bit confused about the following. So let's say you have the words like ずっと [zutto] のって [notte] How would you ...
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0answers
102 views

Pronunciations of と/ど, た/だ, ち/じ [duplicate]

I am a Japanese beginner, and a lot of times I find it hard to distinguish the pronunciations betweenた/だ, と/ど, ちじ etc. For example, わたし, the pre-record pronunciation online sounds like “wadashi” to me;...
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1answer
1k views

things that look like long vowels but aren't

Are there words written with "ei" or "ou" that are pronounced with both vowels instead of as a long vowel? I think this is true in cases like 拾う and している, but are there cases of it happening where you'...
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134 views

Pronuncation of r in Japanese name [duplicate]

I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this but I was wondering how one would pronounce the Japanese name Reita when speaking English. Should it be [leːtə], [reːtə], or something else? For ...
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1answer
93 views

Why are some names pronounced differently from their on-yomi and kun-yomi?

I'm learning how Japanese names work for a story I'm writing and creating names is one of the most fun things I've done in some time. However, it comes with a share of frustrations. One for me is that ...
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3answers
6k views

Why is 「昨夜」 pronounced as 「ゆうべ」 {yuube} and 「今日」 as 「きょう」 {kyou}?

「ゆう」 is neither the kun'yomi nor on'yomi of 「昨」 and 「べ」 is not a pronunciation of 「夜」 either. The same can be said about the pronunciation 「きょう」 for 「今日」. So how come the pronunciations of the two ...
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0answers
63 views

Why is 鬼蜘 pronuenced おにぐも and not おにくも? [duplicate]

I noticed that sometimes the pronunciation changes when combining words. An other example is 不死斬り (ふしぎり) and 腹切り (はらきり); both 斬り and 切り are pronounced きり independently but only in 不死斬り is 斬り ...
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1answer
614 views

How to pronounce 1ターン?

I've seen the phrase 1ターン1度 "once per turn" used in the Yu-Gi-Oh! Card game, so it seems like ターン is a legit counter. But I'm not sure how to pronounce it. From what I've googled so far, some people ...
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2answers
237 views

Why is 輩 in 先輩 pronounced ぱい while 輩 in 後輩 is pronounced はい?

I wonder in this case if there is any rule that turns H to P.
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1answer
73 views

Pronunciation of verbs ending in う

One of the things you learn when studying Japanese is that おう is pronounced like a long おお as in words like そうです (soo desu), but I would like to know if this rule also applies to verbs because there ...
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1answer
99 views

Are they the same: コショウ vs コショー

The question is are these two pronounced the same. If they are how would one know how to spell them. This applies to any case of ウ vs 一.
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1answer
155 views

Does this Kanji: 全効答 (Zen kō Kotae) mean “total efficiency” or at least convey it symbolically?

I've been playing around with using Kanji as a quick way to convey a company's goals and/or ideals. As I understand it, Zen 全 means "whole/complete", Kō 効 means "efficiency/result" and Kotae 答え means "...
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1answer
248 views

Pronunciation of Ōsaka / 大阪 / おおさか / オオサカ

Is the difference in pronunciations of Ōsaka in Google Translate different for the same reasons as "Sayaka" ? I acknowledge this may be a dupe.
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1answer
132 views

Transcription and pronunciation of words that had “wi” in them in English and are「ウィ」in Japanese

I was looking up how the name Will Smith is pronounced and written in Japanese. Why does "Will" become 「ウィル」? I would have expected ワ to be used instead for the first sound. I found mentions of the "...
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1answer
71 views

Is the し in はじめまして pronounced as “shi” or as “sh”? [duplicate]

Is this always the case for words that end in して similar to how です is pronounced "des"?
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2answers
232 views

Pronunciation difference: イオ/イヨ

Is there a sound difference between イオ and イヨ (I can't hear a difference)? When asked to spell baiorin in katakana I tend to mistake バイオリン with バイヨリン.
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1answer
118 views

How do I pronounce/Translate this last name: マッキェネン into english?

I'm translating this book, and the character's full name pops up as " クロウディア=マッキェネン". I managed to translate the first name as Claudia, but I don't know if I should use McCunnen, McCullen, or some ...
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1answer
142 views

How to read mp3 in Japanese?

If I read it word by word in Japanese, it would be 'em pi san'. But, I once heard someone read it quite differently. How is it read in Japanese?
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2answers
184 views

Unvoiced vowels in katakana: special case?

When foreign words or proper names are used in Japanese, some modifications are necessary, in particular a lot of vowels are introduced. E.g. 'plastic' (two syllables) becomes プラスチック (five). In this ...
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3answers
295 views

When is お pronounced「ä」instead of「ō」?

Most often お is pronounced [ō], however sometimes I hear an [ä] instead. It might be arbitrary, but it sounds so consistent to me, thus I ask, are there? And if so, what are they?
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2answers
270 views

Are words always pronounced as spelled?

I came across the word ケーブルカー, or cable-car. Based on the pronunciation I have, the ブ and ル are pronounced like one syllable (like 'brr') instead of two like I expected ('bu ru'). Is this an ...
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3answers
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Actual phonetic realization of “devoiced” vowels

Descriptions of Japanese phonology (such as Wikipedia's) usually describe high vowels between voiceless consonants (or word-finally) as "devoiced". For example, the pronunciation of ⟨圧⟩ 'pressure' and ...
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1answer
166 views

How to Read 醤玉子?

I know that 玉子 is read "tamago". I also know that 醤油 is read "shouyu". I can imagine that 醤玉子 refers to the boiled egg that is submerged in soy sauce. How do you read it though? I assume it's read ...
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1answer
83 views

Difference between おじいさん and おじさん

I'm wondering if there is much difference in the pronunciation of the words or intonation of them. Is it just the long vowel?
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1answer
148 views

Is it common for Kanjis to have several pronounciation like for 乾?

While doing introductionary courses of Japanese, I stumble on a fact that afrights me about the difficulty of the language. When congratulating each other around a drink: 乾杯 the Kanji 乾 is ...
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1answer
159 views

Are there many occurances of elongated syllables throughout the language?

I've been studying Japanese through Duolingo and I wouldn't say I've progressed very far. I've learned some of the basics of Hiragana and it's beginning to transition into Kanji. While learning ...
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3answers
4k views

How do you write the sound “wu”?

As in "Wu Tang" or something similar. Would it be something like ウゥ? I know that "wool" is written as ウール, but 1) the "woo" sound is pronounced slightly differently than "wu", and 2) ウール doesn't ...
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2answers
12k views

Why is the Japanese currency pronounced “yen” in English?

I'm wondering what the reason for the mispronunciation of 円 in English came to be "yen". I can understand how some words like 東京 became "Tokyo", but "en" to "yen" seems strange. On a side note, why is ...
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1answer
139 views

What are the common practice of reading names of modern Chinese people?

From what I've seen from the Japanese Wikipedia, names of communist figures (Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping, Xi Jinping) seem to be read with on'yomi (Mou Takutou, Tou Shouhei, Shuu Kinpei). On the other ...
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1answer
188 views

Pronunciation Troubles with トラブル and トラブる: Loanwords with both noun and verb ending in ru mora

Following this comment: What is the difference in pronunciation or pitch accent between: トラブル and トラブる ダブル and ダブる What are the regional differences (if any)? Is the pronunciation rule ...
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4answers
828 views

Do native speakers think of prolonged vowels as one long vowel, or two vowel sounds following each other?

In a native speaker's mental model, are long vowel sounds - for example the おう in 「教室」 the ああ in 「唐揚げ」, the えい in 「先生」 or just 「いい」 (I chose these examples quite deliberately, since they represent ...
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2answers
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Do words differing only in the voicedness of consonants act as functionally homophonous?

In Japanese, there are some sound differences that clearly distinguish words from one another, such as falling on a different 行 or 段 on the 五十音 ([傘]{かさ} vs. [風]{かぜ} or [友]{とも} vs その); while other ...
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1answer
98 views

What's the difference between these two names?

オタ オター I want a name translated but not sure which to pick, what sounds the best and what's the difference between them? The name which I'm trying to translate is "Oter".
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Do native speakers pronounce long vowels えい or おう as one long vowel, or two different vowels?

In Japanese, long vowels ā, ī, ū are written as ああ (aa), いい (ii), うう (uu). However, ē and ō, in most cases, written as えい (ei) and おう (ou), but in other cases as ええ (ee) and おお (oo). For example: 先生{...
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2answers
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Why does Duolingo say that 中 is pronounced “naka” but spelled ちゅう?

I am currently doing the beta course for Japaneses on duolingo. In one of the lessons, I was confronted with this question which I kept getting wrong: When I play the sound, the voice clearly says "...
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0answers
88 views

What's the difference between “on”, “oto” and “ne”

I've seen some various examples where the kanji "音" has different readings (おん, おと and ね) and couldn't found out when to use each one. Is there a general rule to know each one should I use in an ...
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3answers
2k views

How are し, ち, and じ pronounced differently than in English?

I know that sh, ch, and j are pronounced differently in Chinese than in English, but what about Japanese? I have read that し, ち, じ are pronounced slightly differently than they would be in English (...
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1answer
134 views

On hiragana, romaji and pronunciation

I have heard a Japanese teacher explain how long vowels should be pronounced and how they should be written when using hiragana. That's what I saw on the whiteboard: がっこう - gakkoo, (not gakkou) Is ...
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2answers
308 views

ほ /ho/ pronunciation

I've just started using Mango's On-the-Go (meaning "audio-only version") Japanese course. (It's free from my library. They also have Pimsleur, though their only copy is in use right now.) I think I'...
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7answers
67k views

Why do Japanese speakers have difficulty pronouncing “L”?

Why is it that native speakers of Japanese have a hard time pronouncing "l"? Whenever a western word contains "L" I see that they pronounce it "ru", "ra", "ro", "ri", or "re".
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3answers
173 views

How do I read 上 in ご注文の際は予めそちらをご了承の上お願い致します? What does it mean?

ご注文の際は予めそちらをご了承の上お願い致します。 How do I read the 上? うえ? or じょう? What is the meaning of 上 in that sentence?
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70 views

Why the pronunciation of some words is different than their components? [duplicate]

美味しい is being pronounced おいしい, but it is not the sum of the way its kanji components are being pronounced. I think I have also seen it in some other words. So why is that the pronunciation of some ...