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This page is designed to answer questions regarding Japanese and its use on Wikipedia. If you have trouble viewing Japanese, please see the Help:Installing Japanese character sets page for assistance for your particular operating system.

In the Toaru Majutsu no Index wiki the nihongo template is required for all Japanese text in articles.

Japanese orthography Edit

Main article: Japanese writing system

Japanese text is written with a mixture of kanji, katakana and hiragana syllabaries. Almost all kanji originated in China, and may have more than one meaning and pronunciation. Kanji compounds generally derive their meaning from the combined kanji. For example, Tokyo (東京) is written with two kanji: "east" (東) + "capital" (京). The kanji, however, are pronounced differently from their Chinese relatives. For example, in modern mandarin Chinese, these two kanji would be "Dongjing." The name was chosen because Tokyo was to be the eastern capital of Japan, relative to its previous capital city, Kyoto (京都). (Some other kanji compounds use characters chosen primarily for their pronunciations. Such characters are called ateji.) In addition to native words and placenames, kanji are used to write Japanese family names and most Japanese given names.

Centuries ago, hiragana and katakana, the two kana syllabaries, derived their shapes from particular kanji pronounced in the same way. However, unlike kanji, kana have no meaning, and are used only to represent sounds. Hiragana are generally used to write some Japanese words and given names and grammatical aspects of Japanese. For example, the Japanese word for "to do" (する suru) is written with two hiragana: す (su) + る (ru). Katakana are generally used to write loanwords, foreign names and onomatopoeia. For example, retasu was borrowed from the English "lettuce", and is written with three katakana: レ (re) + タ (ta) + ス (su). The onomatopoeia for the sound of typing is kata kata, and is written with 4 katakana: カ (ka) + タ (ta) + カ (ka) + タ (ta). It is common nowadays to see many businesses using katakana in place of hiragana and kanji in advertising. Additionally, people may use katakana when writing their names or informal documents for aesthetic reasons.

Roman characters have also recently become popular for certain purposes in Japanese. (see rōmaji)

In the Toaru Majutsu no Index wikiEdit

Seemingly a preferred literary device by Kamachi Kazuma, the original author of the series, as well as other mediums, words are normally in kanji, but have alternative readings and pronounciations provided in furigana, to dictate the reader on how to pronounce the kanji. The furigana could either be katakana or hiragana, with the former more often used in "foreign, technical, scientific, or fantastical" terms, while hiragana is often used for more general pronunciations like a character or location's name. For example: Kamijou Touma's Imagine Breaker has the characters 幻想殺し that means Illusion Killer, however, it has a katakana reading for it on how it is supposed to be pronounced, イマジンブレイカー, which means Imagine Breaker. The wiki uses the alternative character reading when referring to terms in the Toaru Majutsu no Index if they are provided. For example: Judgment's kanji meaning (風紀委員) is the Disciplinary Committee.

Japanese pronunciationEdit

Main article: Japanese phonology

Throughout Wikipedia, a modified version of the widely accepted Hepburn romanization is used to represent Japanese sounds in Roman characters. The following are some basic rules for using Hepburn to pronounce Japanese words accurately.

VowelsEdit

  • The vowels a, e, i, o, and u are generally pronounced somewhat similarly to those in Italian, Portuguese, French, Spanish, and Slavic languages.
  • The vowel u is similar to that of the oo in moon, although shorter and without lip-rounding. In certain contexts, such as after "s" at the end of a word, the vowel is devoiced, so desu may sound like dess.
  • Japanese vowels can either be long (bimoraic) or short (monomoraic). The Wikipedia:macron denotes a long vowel.
    • Long a, o and u sounds are usually written with macrons as ā, ō and ū. The notation "ou" or "oo" is sometimes used for a long "ō", following [[kana spelling practices.
    • Long e and i sounds are usually written ei /ee and ii, but in neologisms are instead written with macrons as ē and ī.
    • Circumflexes (âêîôû) occasionally appear as a typographical alternative to macrons, especially in older texts.

Japanese vowels can be approximated in English as follows:

vowel a i u e o
British Received Pronunciation between cap and cup as in feet as in boot as in vet as in dog
General American as in father as in feet as in boot as in hey as in know

Moraic nEdit

  • An n before a consonant is moraic (its own mora).
  • A moraic n followed by a vowel or y is written n' to distinguish it from mora that begin with the consonant n.
  • The moraic n has various phonetic realizations:
    • Before an n, t, d or r, it is pronounced [n].
    • Before a k or g, it is pronounced [ŋ].
    • Before an m, b or p, it is pronounced as [m]. It is written as m in some versions of Hepburn, but as n in Wikipedia’s modified Hepburn.
    • It is otherwise pronounced as [ɴ] or [ɯ̃].

ConsonantsEdit

  • Consonants other than f and r are generally pronounced as in English.
  • The consonant f is bilabial: the teeth are not used, and the sound is much softer than the "f" of English.
  • The consonant r is similar to Korean r. To an English speaker's ears, its pronunciation lies somewhere between a flapped t (as in American and Australian English better and ladder), an l and a d.
  • Double consonants (kk, tt, etc.) basically indicate a slight, sharp pause before and stronger emphasis of the following sound, more similar to Italian than English. Spelling anomalies:
    • double ch is written as tch (sometimes cch),
    • double sh is written as ssh and
    • double ts is written as tts.

When a consonant is followed by another of the same letter, the first consonant is written with a chiisai (made-smaller) tsu (つ/ツ). Exception: Double n. In this case, being as n (ん/ン) is a single consonant, it can be written by itself. (Ex: Woman: Onna-おんな)

In the Toaru Majutsu no Index wikiEdit

In the Toaru Majutsu no Index wiki, the "ou" and others is preferred to using macrons, umlauts, and other diacritics, and is the current standard for easier searching. However, this only applies to romanizations of Japanese names and words, but are however, kept for words from different languages such as the Mjölnir.

Japanese namesEdit

Main article: Wikipedia:Japanese name

In Japan the given name always comes after the family name:

  • Example: 福田康夫 (Fukuda Yasuo). 福田 ("Fukuda") is the family name.

A similar, reverse name ordering is used in Chinese and Hungarian.

However, to reflect the Western convention of listing the given name first and the family name last, some Japanese people born since the establishment of the Meiji era (1868-09-08) conform to the "given name, family name" order in western texts. So 福田康夫 (Fukuda Yasuo) is listed as "Yasuo Fukuda". On Wikipedia, normally Western order is used for people born from the first year of Meiji (1868) onward.

In the Toaru Majutsu no Index wikiEdit

The Japanese naming convention is used in the wiki for all Japanese characters as well as real world persons of Japanese citizenship.

See alsoEdit

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