Fun Japanese Words – Part III

In a couple of previous articles, I’ve talked about original phrases in Japanese that succinctly and elegantly describe situations and behaviors that you can only clumsily talk around in English. However, luckily for learners of Japanese, the language has an almost endless supply of these words. So here are three more fun, unique words.

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Pronunciation – おう And Morphemic Boundaries

In another article on how to read HiraganaI discussed how to pronounce certain vowel combinations such as おう、えい、and いい. Most often, textbooks and other Japanese language learning resources will tell students that おう and おお are pronounced exactly the same, and the difference is merely due to historical orthography. In most cases, this is true. However, this simplification is not entirely accurate and ignores a crucial distinction that all native Japanese speakers intuitively make.

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