/ Japanese Language

Hacking Kanji from Chinese - Part 1

In this article we're going to tackle some Sino-Japanese phono-semantic similar readings that all fall into the same class and all share the same phonetics with each other, although there are many different phonetic compounds that appear here. This article is intended for both advanced and new learners and is not about trying to memorise a lot of new characters, but rather to acquire a large amount of new vocabulary through the process of related meanings. So don't worry if you can't remember a single Kanji after this. Advanced learners will find the characters a very useful reference.

Contents

Reflexes and Sound Laws
Consonants from Chinese to Japanese
Character Set (Kanji)
Semantic Analysis

Download Japanese Verb Handbook for JLPT


Reflexes and Sound Laws

All languages change over time in regular ways. The way in which languages change is no secret to linguists who have a list of sound laws that can track sound changes and the growth of new languages inside a language family. Think of a language family as a tree that keeps growing new leaves and branches. Each branch and leaf carries the same DNA, but think of each leaf appearing unique and different. This is how languages grow and change over time: on the surface they appearnothing alike, but with closer analysis, similarities are striking. They also bear offspring. Sometimes, as is the case with both Japanese and English, they borrow lots of words from neighbouring languages and as a result adjust the sounds to their own pronunciation.

I often use the term "reflex" which simply means a single sound that can be tracked from an ancient language down to all its children languages. In Japanese, the large amount of vocabulary borrowed from Chinese all have pronunciations that have regular reflexes. So let's take a look at how it works.

We can't compare Japanese with the modern language of Mandarin Chinese. It just doesn't work that way. If you already know Mandarin, this article may help you in some ways, but you will still have a lot to learn about how to organise the vocabulary that you already know as this is not common knowledge. Likewise, those who know Japanese may find this article useful in acquiring Chinese.

The earliest dictionaries of Chinese listed pronunciations of characters by using a short list of characters from which the sounds could be deduced. These characters can now be mapped directly with today's International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) allowing us to fairly quickly reconstruct the pronunciations of Middle Chinese.

I use the term Middle Chinese to refer to Chinese at a middle point in history at approximately the time the language was giving birth to all the Chinese daughter languages that we know today; a time depth of approximately two thousand years. In other words, Middle Chinese is about the same age as Latin. Old Chinese is even older and is used for comparison with Tibetan and other languages. So if you know of Middle English and Old English, just keep in mind that the time depth of Chinese is more than twice as long.

Consonants from Chinese to Japanese

Japanese received Chinese vocabulary at two points in history from two different locations, greatly affecting the pronunciations in Japanese. This has created the problem that every Kanji has two on'yomi (Chinese pronunciations). There is even a third borrowing from the Tang Dynasty, but since it is very limited, I will only mention it briefly.

The first point in history are those coming from 吳 and therefore called 吳音 go'on in Japanese. The 吳 (Wu) language is still spoken in China today in Zhejiang province. And one thing to remember about it is that it has voiced consonants whereas most other Chinese languages do not. What I mean by voiced is that other than the regular /m n l r/ letters, there are also /b d ɡ/ letters. These do not exist in Mandarin or other Chinese languages. Don't be fooled by pinyin spelling which just "borrows" {b d g} to help make spelling and learning the modern language easier for students. These are not really voiced like they are in English or Japanese.

The second point in history are those coming from the 漢 Han Dynasty and therefore called 漢音 kan'on in Japanese. By this time, Chinese had lost voicing (excepted nasals and liquids /m n l r/). So if you happen to see the voiced sounds of /b d ɡ/ in Japanese on'yomi, they're probably going to be go'on readings and not kan'on.

Below is how the onset sounds evolved over time into Japanese. (+ is voiced, - is unvoiced)

Pre-Modern Dictionary Pronunciation GuideMiddle ChineseMandarin PinyinJapanese 吳音Japanese 漢音
p⁼ (-)p (-)h (-)h (-)
pʰ (-)p (-)h (-)h (-)
b (+)b/p (-)b (+)h (-)
m (+)m (+)m (+)b (+)
f⁼ (-)f (-)h (-)h (-)
fʰ (-)f (-)h (-)h (-)
v (+)f (-)b (+)h (-)
ɱ (+)w (+)m (+)b (+)
ʈ (-)zh (-)t (-)t (-)
ʈʰ (-)ch (-)t (-)t (-)
ɖ (+)zh/ch (-)d (+)t (-)
ɳ (+)n (+)n (+)d (+)
t⁼ (-)d (-)t (-)t (-)
tʰ (-)t (-)t (-)t (-)
d (+)d/t (-)d (+)t (-)
n (+)n (+)n (+)d (+)
l (+)l (+)r (+)r (+)
c⁼ (-)zh (-)s (-)s (-)
穿cʰ (-)ch (-)s (-)s (-)
ɟ (+)sh/ch (-)z (+)s (-)
ɲ (+)r (+)n (+)z (+)
ʎ (+)y/w (+)y/w (+)y/w (+)
ɕ (-)sh (-)s (-)s (-)
ʑ (+)sh (-)z (+)s (-)
tʂ⁼ (-)zh (-)s (-)s (-)
tʂʰ (-)ch (-)sh (-)sh (-)
dʐ (+)zh/ch (-)z (+)s (-)
ʂ (-)sh (-)s (-)s (-)
tʂ⁼ (-)zh (-)s (-)s (-)
ʂ (-)sh (-)s (-)s (-)
ʦ⁼ (-)j (-)sh (-)s (-)
ʦʰ (-)q (-)sh (-)s (-)
ʣ (+)z/j/c/q (-)z (+)s (-)
s (-)s/x (-)s (-)s (-)
z (+)s/x (-)z (+)s (-)
k⁼ (-)g/j (-)k (-)k (-)
kʰ (-)k/q (-)k (-)k
ɡ (+)g/j/k/q (-)g (+)k (-)
ŋ (+)w (+)g (+)g (+)
x (-)h/x (-)k (-)k (-)
ɣ (+)h/x (-)g/w (+)k (-)
ʔ (-)∅/y/w (+)∅y/w (+)∅y/w (+)

In Japanese all /p b f v/ are lost and become /h/ (only 吳音 retain /b/). These can change back to /b/ when duplicated following a vowel, or to /p/ in compound words following a consonant, but never in the first syllable. The table below shows how these consonant endings /p t c k m n ɲ ŋ/ change into Japanese, and we analyse this data under 'semantic analysis' below.

Pre-Modern ToneMiddle ChineseMandarin PinyinJapanese 吳音Japanese 漢音
-p-u-u
-t-ti-tu
-c-ku-ki/-ku
-k-ku-ki/-ku
-m-n-n-n
-n-n-n-n
-ng-u-i/-u
-ng-u-i/-u

Character Set (Kanji)

First, let's lay out the reflexes from Middle Chinese pronunciations to both Mandarin and Japanese. We'll look specifically at the 山 rhyme class. As you know, 山 means mountain. And one of the most apparent aspects of a mountain other than its height is its round shape. Think of Mount Fuji (富士山) for example. Almost perfectly round. Keep this concept of "round" in mind as it is very important to the material presented here.

The following table shows only common Chinese characters as they were pronounced in Middle Chinese, as they are pronounced today in Mandarin (disregarding tone), and their Japanese 吳音 and 漢音 pronunciations. The characters are grouped by Middle Chinese syllable grades within the 山 Rhyme class. Each rhyme class has round lips and unrounded (open) lips, each with four grades of varying semivowel glides. The second grade is either the rounded vowel {o} or open vowel {e} and these fuse with the nucleus vowel and change its structure somewhat.

If you're interested in the characters, take note of the phonetic compounds that appear throughout which will help you immensely with remembering a large number of characters. For example, some elements combine with lots of different radicals such as 反, 曼, 雚, 官, 元, 單, 前, 艮, 旦, 干. The Japanese counterparts are sometimes simplified or differ slightly such as 觀>観 or 錢>銭, or 圓>円, or 邊>辺.

If you'd like to find out more about how to learn Chinese characters from phonetic compounds, I strongly recommend Olle Linge's article Hacking Chinese: Phonetic Compounds.

Pre-Modern Dictionary RhymeMiddle Chinese /IPA/Mandarin {pinyin}Japanese {phonemic}
山-Rhyme, Round Grade 1 (w glide)丸ɣuɑn, 亂luɑn, 冠k⁼uɑn, 判pʰuɑn, 半p⁼uɑn, 卵luɑn, 喚xuɑn, 團duɑn, 完ɣuɑn, 官k⁼uɑn, 寬kʰuɑn, 換ɣuɑn, 斷t⁼uɑn, 暖nuɑn, 棺k⁼uɑn, 款kʰuɑn, 歡xuɑn, 段duɑn, 滿muɑn, 漫muɑn, 灌k⁼uɑn, 玩ŋuɑn, 番pʰuɑn, 盤buɑn, 端t⁼uɑn, 算suɑn, 管k⁼uɑn, 緩ɣuɑn, 纂ʦ⁼uɑn, 翫ŋuɑn, 腕uɑn, 般p⁼uɑn, 觀k⁼uɑn, 貫k⁼uɑn, 酸suɑn, 館k⁼uɑn, 鰻muɑn丸wan, 亂luan, 冠guan, 判pan, 半ban, 卵luan, 喚huan, 團tuan, 完wan, 官guan, 寬kuan, 換huan, 斷duan, 暖nuan, 棺guan, 款kuan, 歡huan, 段duan, 滿man, 漫man, 灌guan, 玩wan, 番fan, 盤pan, 端duan, 算suan, 管guan, 緩huan, 纂zuan, 翫wan, 腕wan, 般ban, 觀guan, 貫guan, 酸suan, 館guan, 鰻man丸gan, 乱ran, 冠kan, 判hon/han, 半han, 卵ran, 喚kan, 团ton/dan, 完kan, 官kan, 寬kan, 換kan, 断dan, 暖dan, 棺kan, 款kan, 歓kan, 段dan, 満man, 漫man, 灌kan, 玩gan, 番ban, 盤ban, 端tan, 算san, 管kan, 緩kan, 纂san, 翫gan, 腕wan, 般han, 観kan, 貫kan, 酸san, 館kan, 鰻ban/man
山-Rhyme, Round Grade 2 (o mixed vowel)幻ɣuan, 患ɣuan, 慣k⁼uan, 灣uan, 環ɣuan, 關k⁼uan, 頑ŋuan幻huan, 患huan, 慣guan, 灣wan, 環huan, 關guan, 頑wan幻gen, 患kan, 慣kan, 湾wan, 環kan, 関kan, 頑gan
山-Rhyme, Round Grade 3 (y glide)元ŋyan, 全ʣyan, 券kʰyan, 勸kʰyan, 卷k⁼yan, 原ŋyan, 反f⁼yan, 員yan, 圈ɡyan, 園yan, 圓yan, 宛yan, 宣syan, 怨yan, 戀lyan, 拳ɡyan, 捲k⁼yan, 援yan, 旋zyan, 晚ɱyan, 權ɡyan, 泉ʣyan, 源ŋyan, 煩vyan, 猿yan, 絹k⁼yan, 繁vyan, 翻fʰyan, 萬ɱyan, 軟ɲyan, 返f⁼yan, 遠yan, 選syan, 鉛ʎyan, 院yan, 願ŋyan, 飯vyan元yuan, 全quan, 券quan, 勸quan, 卷juan, 原yuan, 反fan, 員yuan, 圈quan, 園yuan, 圓yuan, 宛yuan, 宣xuan, 怨yuan, 戀lian, 拳quan, 捲juan, 援yuan, 旋xuan, 晚wan, 權quan, 泉quan, 源yuan, 煩fan, 猿yuan, 絹juan, 繁fan, 翻fan, 萬wan, 軟ruan, 返fan, 遠yuan, 選xuan, 鉛qian, 院yuan, 願yuan, 飯fan元gan/gen, 全zen, 劵ken, 勧kan, 卷kan, 原gen, 反hon/han, 員in, 圈ken, 園en, 円en, 宛en, 宣sen, 怨an/en, 恋ren, 拳ken, 捲ken, 援en, 旋sen, 晚ban, 権ken, 泉sen, 源gen, 煩bon/han, 猿en, 絹ken, 繁han, 翻hon, 万ban/man, 軟nan, 返hen, 遠an/en, 選sen, 鉛en, 院in, 願gan, 飯han
山-Rhyme, Round Grade 4 (y glide)懸ɣyan, 淵yan, 犬kʰyan, 玄ɣyan懸xuan, 淵yuan, 犬quan, 玄xuan县ken, 淵en, 犬ken, 玄gen
山-Rhyme, Open Grade 1 (no glide)丹t⁼ɑn, 乾k⁼ɑn, 刊kʰɑn, 單t⁼ɑn, 坦tʰɑn, 壇dɑn, 安ɑn, 寒ɣɑn, 岸ŋɑn, 干k⁼ɑn, 幹k⁼ɑn, 彈dɑn, 散sɑn, 旦dɑn, 案ɑn, 檀dɑn, 欄lɑn, 殘ʣɑn, 汗ɣɑn, 漢xɑn, 炭tʰɑn, 看kʰɑn, 肝k⁼ɑn, 誕dɑn, 贊ʦ⁼ɑn, 難nɑn丹dan, 乾qian, 刊kan, 單dan, 坦tan, 壇tan, 安an, 寒han, 岸an, 干gan, 幹gan, 彈tan/dan, 散san, 旦t⁼an, 案an, 檀tan, 欄lan, 殘can, 汗han, 漢han, 炭tan, 看kan, 肝gan, 誕dan, 贊zan, 難nan丹tan, 乾ken/kan, 刊kan, 單tan, 坦tan, 壇dan, 安an, 寒kan, 岸gan, 干kan, 幹kan, 弾dan, 散san, 旦tan, 案an, 檀dan/tan, 欄ran, 殘zan, 汗kan, 漢kan, 炭tan, 看kan, 肝kan, 誕tan, 贊san, 難nan
山-Rhyme, Open Grade 2 (e mixed vowel)姦k⁼an, 山ʂan, 慢man, 棧dʐan, 版p⁼an, 產ʂan, 眼ŋan, 簡k⁼an, 閑ɣan, 間k⁼an, 限ɣan, 顏ŋan姦jian, 山shan, 慢man, 棧zhan, 版ban, 產chan, 眼yan, 簡jian, 閑xian, 間jian, 限xian, 顏yan姦kan, 山san, 慢man, 棧san, 版han, 產san, 眼gen/gan, 簡kan, 閑kan, 間ken/kan, 限gen, 顏gan
山-Rhyme, Open Grade 3 (j glide)件ɡjan, 便bjan, 健ɡjan, 善ʑjan, 展ʈjan, 延ʎjan, 建k⁼jan, 弁bjan, 憲xjan, 戰c⁼jan, 扇ɕjan, 淺ʦʰjan, 演ʎjan, 然ɲjan, 煎ʦ⁼jan, 燃ɲjan, 獻xjan, 禪ʑjan, 箭ʦ⁼jan, 線sjan, 編p⁼jan, 繕ʑjan, 羨zjan, 言ŋjan, 軒xjan, 連ljan, 遣kʰjan, 遷ʦʰjan, 錢ʣjan, 面mjan, 鮮sjan件jian, 便bian, 健jian, 善shan, 展zhan, 延yan, 建jian, 弁bian, 憲xian, 戰zhan, 扇shan, 淺qian, 演yan, 然ran, 煎jian, 燃ran, 獻xian, 禪chan, 箭jian, 線xian, 編bian, 繕shan, 羨xian, 言yan, 軒xuan, 連lian, 遣qian, 遷qian, 錢qian, 面mian, 鮮xian件ken, 便ben/bin, 健ken, 善zen, 展ten, 延en, 建kon/ken, 弁ben, 憲ken, 戦sen, 扇sen, 浅sen, 演en, 然nen/zen, 煎sen, 燃nen, 献kon/ken, 禅zen, 箭sen, 線sen, 編hen, 繕zen, 羨sen/en, 言gon/gen, 軒ken, 連ren, 遣ken, 遷sen, 銭sen, 面men, 鮮sen
山-Rhyme, Open Grade 4 (j glide)先sjan, 典t⁼jan, 前ʣjan, 千ʦʰjan, 堅k⁼jan, 填djan, 天tʰjan, 宴jan, 年njan, 弦ɣjan, 憐ljan, 煙jan, 牽kʰjan, 現ɣjan, 田djan, 研ŋjan, 練ljan, 肩k⁼jan, 蓮ljan, 薦ʦ⁼jan, 見k⁼jan, 賢ɣjan, 邊p⁼jan, 電djan, 顛t⁼jan, 顯xjan先xian, 典dian, 前qian, 千qian, 堅jian, 填tian, 天tian, 宴yan, 年nian, 弦xian, 憐lian, 煙yan, 牽qian, 現xian, 田djan, 研yan, 練lian, 肩jian, 蓮lian, 薦jian, 見jian, 賢xian, 邊bian, 電dian, 顛dian, 顯xian先sen, 典ten, 前zen, 千sen, 堅ken, 填ten, 天ten, 宴en, 年nen, 弦gen, 憐ren, 煙en, 牽ken, 現gen, 田den, 研ken, 練ren, 肩ken, 蓮ren, 薦sen, 見ken, 賢ken, 辺hen, 電den, 顛ten, 顕ken

Semantic Analysis

Here's the fun part: learning the meanings of all these characters and derivative words! Remember above I mentioned to keep in mind Mount Fuji and the concept of 'round'. In Chinese all of these words end in -an, and in Japanese either -an, -on, or -en, depending on the grade and time of borrowing. Almost all of the words in this group have these extended meanings: round/spherical/cyclical/ring, beginning/mid/ending points (of a cycle), return/exchange/complete, half (cycle), full/fill/fulfilling/satisfied, strong/healthy, curl/whirl/twirl/whorl/swirl/rotate/turn over, a tube or long round thing: a branch/wire/string.

Below each of the Japanese pronunciations I've included the kun'yomi which is the Japanese native word normally used in verb and adjective forms. The mnemonic section gives you a way to remember the related vocabulary. If you have any more mnemonic ideas, please leave a comment.

Japanese
{onyomi}
{kunyomi}
MnemonicSample VocabularyEnglish TranslationChinese Translation
丸gan
(maru)
ball, complete, round丸薬ganyaku
medicine tablet藥丸yàowán
弾丸danganpellet or bullet槍彈qiāngdàn
乱ran
(mida-reru, mida-su)
a big round mess: messy, chaotic乱雑ranzatsumessy雜亂záluàn
乱心ranshingo crazy發狂fākuáng
乱入rannyuuintrusion闖入chuǎngrù
乱売ranbaisell at discount or auction拍賣pāimài
混乱konrandisorder混亂hǔnluàn
冠kan
(kanmuri)
a round crown: a crown冠水kansuiflooding淹水yānshuǐ
栄冠eikanhonour榮譽róngyù
王冠oukanking's crown王冠wángguàn
判hana circle of judges delivering a: sentence判決hanketsujudgement判決pànjué
判事hanjia judge審判官shěnpàn guān
判然hanzenobviously顯然xiǎnrán, 明顯míngxiǎn
判断handanto judge判斷pànduàn
判定hanteia judgement判定pàndìng
批判hihancriticism, critical批判pīpàn
裁判saibanjudge/referee in a match裁判cáipàn
審判shinpana trial審判shěnpàn
評判hyoubanan evaluation, judgement評判píngpàn
半han
(naka-ba)
half a circle: half半音han.onhalf-note (music)半音bànyīn
半球hankyuuhalf-globe, hemisphere半球bànqiú
半減hangenseparated into two parts減半jiǎnbàn
半熟hanjukuhalf cooked, half ripe半熟bànshóu
半数hansuuhalf the number半數bànshù
半月han-(tsuki)half a month半個月bàngeyuè
半島hantouhalf-island, peninsula半島bàndǎo
半年han-(toshi)half a year半年bànnián
半日hannichihalf a day半天bàntiān
半端han-(pa)unthorough不齊全bù qíquán
後半kouhanlast half後半hòubàn
前半zenhanfirst half前半qiánbàn
大半taihanmostly大部分dàbùfèn
夜半yahanmidnight半夜bànyè
折半seppanreduce to half折半zhébàn
卵ran
(tamago)
a round ovary or egg卵黄ran.ouyolk蛋黃dànhuáng
卵巣ransouovary卵巢luǎncháo
卵白ranpakuprotein蛋白dànbái
鶏卵keiranchicken's egg雞蛋jīdàn
產卵sanranlay an egg產卵chǎnluǎn
喚kanto call or transmit over喚起kankicause, give rise to引起yǐnqǐ
喚問kanmoncommunications, subpoena傳訊chuánxùn
叫喚kyoukancall upon叫喚jiàohuàn
召喚shoukansummon召喚zhàohuàn
团dan (ton)a round group of people: a group団員dan.ingroup member團員tuányuán
団結danketsuunity, solidarity團結tuánjié
団子dangoa ball丸子wánzi
団体dantaia group團體tuántǐ
団長danchouhead of a group團長tuánzhǎng
楽団gakudanmusic group, band, orchestra樂團yuètuán
集団shuudan(commercial) group集團jítuán
少年団shounendanboy scouts童子軍tóngzǐjūn
暴力団bouryokudanviolent group: mafia黑道hēidào
旅行団ryokoudantravel group: tour group旅行團lǚxíngtuán
布団futonbed cover, duvet棉被miánbèi
完kana finished cycle: complete完結kanketsufinish
結束jiéshù
完工kankoufinish work完工wángōng
完済kansairepay all debts還清huánqīng
完勝kanshoucompletely win全勝quánshèng
完成kanseicompleted完成wánchéng
完全kanzencompletely完全wánquán
完敗kanpaicompletely lose徹底失敗chèdǐ shībài
未完mikanunfinished未完wèiwán
官kangovernment, official官界kankaithe political world政界zhèngjiè
官学kangakupublic school公立學校gōnglì xuéxiào
官職kanshokupublic office公職gōngzhí
官庁kanchougovernment agency政府機關zhèngfǔ jīguān
官費kanhipublic expense公費gōngfèi
官僚kanryoubureaucracy官僚guānliáo
器官kikanan organ (body, political)器官qìguān
警官keikanpolice officer警官jǐngguān
裁判官saibankanchief judge法官fǎguān
試験管shikenkanexamination officer考試官kǎoshìguān
事務官jimukanaffairs officer事務官shìwùguān
上官joukanworkplace superior上司shàngsī
長官choukandepartment chief長官zhǎngguān
寬kanwide寛大kandaileniency寬大kuāndà
寛容kanyoutolerance寬容kuānróng
換kan
(ka-eru, ka-waru)
to finish a cycle by reciprocation: to exchange or give back換気kankichange-air: ventilation通風tōngfēng
換算kansanchange-calculate: conversion換算huànsuàn
断dan
(ta-tsu, kotowa-ru`)
to prevent from finishing: to cut a line断食danjikicut food supply斷食duànshí
断水dansuicut water supply斷水duànshuǐ
断絶danzetsuto sever, severance斷絕duànjué
断然danzenperemptory, final, absolute斷然duànrán
断層dansoua fault line斷層duàncéng
断続danzokuintermittent, on and off斷斷續續duànduànxùxù
断定danteiconclusive, determined斷定, 判斷duàn, pànduàn
切断setsudandisconnection切斷qiēduàn
暖dan
(atata-ka, atata-kai, atata-maru, atata-meru)
warmth暖冬dantouwarm winter暖冬nuǎndōng
暖流danryuuwarm current暖流nuǎnliú
暖炉danrostove, furnace火爐huǒlú
温暖ondanwarm weather溫暖wēnnuǎn
寒暖計kandankeiheat-level-meter: thermometer溫度計wēndùjì
棺kanmaybe coffins were round in pre-modern days: a coffin棺桶kan-(oke)a coffin棺材guāncai
款kancycle of funds: borrowing, lending, remittance定款teikanarticles of incorporation章程zhāngchéng
借款shakkanbanking loan借款jièkuǎn
歓kanwelcome with wide open arms歓迎kangeiwelcome歡迎huānyíng
段dana part of a cycle: a stage or level段階dankaia phase階段jiēduàn
段落danrakua paragraph段落duànluò
階段kaidansteps, ladder階梯jiētī
手段shudanthe means, method手段shǒuduàn
値段(ne)-dana price價格jiàgé
満man
(mi-chiru, mi-tasu)
fulfilled: full満員man.infull, sold out, no vacancy客滿kèmǎn
満期mankidue, deadline到期dàoqí
満身manshinthe whole body全身quánshēn
満水mansuifull of water水滿shuǐmǎn
満足manzokusatisfied, fulfilled滿足mǎnzú
満点mantenfull points滿分mǎnfēn
満腹manpukufull stomach飽腹bǎofù
満々manmanfully滿滿的mǎnmǎnde
不満fumanunsatisfied不滿bùmǎn
満ちるmichiruto fill充滿chōngmǎn
満たすmitasuto fill up裝滿zhuāngmǎn
漫mancyclical: travel/walk/talk back and forth漫画mangacomics漫畫mànhuà
漫才manzaicrosstalk相聲xiàngsheng
漫然manzenaimlessly無心wúxīn
漫遊manyuuroaming漫遊mànyóu
放漫houmanloose, irresponsible散漫sànmàn, 隨便suíbiàn
爛漫ranmanblooming, brilliant爛漫lànmàn
灌kan
(soso-gu)
fill up with water: to pour灌漑kangaiirrigation灌溉guàngài
玩gan
(moteasobu)
children playing in a circle: play玩具gangua toy玩具wánjù
番bannumber in a series, such as queue, flight, schedule番banshift輪班lúnbān
番組bangumiprogram節目jiémù
番號bangoua number號碼hàomǎ
交番kyoubana precinct派出所pàichūsuǒ
週番shuubanweekly shift每週輪流的值班měi zhōu lúnliú de zhíbān
順番junbanthe order順序shùnxù
盤bana round tray: a tray円盤enbandisc圓盤yuánpán
基盤kibanfoundation基礎jīchǔ
算盤(soro)-banabacus算盤suànpán
端tan
(hashi, ha, hata)
beginning or end point: a node端子tanshiUSB flash drive隨身碟suíshēndié
一端ittana node or point一端yīduān
極端kyokutanan extreme point極端jíduān
末端mattanan end node末端mòduān
両端ryoutantwo ends兩端liǎngduān
算san
(soro)
calculate算出sanshutsucalculated算出suànchū
算数sansuua count算數suànshù
算定santeian estimate推算tuīsuàn
計算keisana calculation計算jìsuàn
打算dasanan intention, plan打算dǎsuàn
通算tsuusansum total總記zǒngjì
予算yosana budget預算yùsuàn
暗算anzanmental arithmetic心算xīnsuàn
算盤sorobanabacus算盤suànpán
管kan
(kuda)
a long round thing: a tube, duct>conduct>manage管楽器kangakkiwind instruments管樂器guǎnyuèqì
管理kanrimanagement管理guǎnlǐ
血管kekkanblood pipe: an artery血管xiěguǎn
水道管suidoukanwater pipe水管shuǐguǎn
鉄管tekkaniron pipe鐵管tiěguǎn
保管hokancare, custody保管bǎoguǎn
緩kan
(yuru-i, yuru-yaka, yuru-mu, yuru-meru)
slow緩急kankyuuurgency緩急huǎnjí
緩慢kanmanslowness緩慢huǎnmàn
緩和kanwaslow and easy緩和huǎnhé
緩めるyurumeruto relax放鬆fàngsōng
纂sancollecting and editing纂修sanshuediting編修biānxiū
編纂hensanediting編修biānxiū
翫gan
(moteaso-bu)
appreciation翫賞ganshouappreciation (of art, view)欣賞xīnshǎng
腕wan
()
a round body part: the wrist腕力wanryokuwrist腕力wànlì
腕前(udemae)one's own ability本事běnshì
般hanamong everybody: in general一般ippanin general一般yībān
諸般shohanall kinds各種gèzhǒng
先般senpana few days ago前幾天qiánjǐtiān
全般zenpanoverall整體zhěngtǐ
観kanscenery or view: point of view観客kankyakuviewing audience觀眾guānzhòng
観光kankousightseeing觀光guānguāng
観察kansatsukeeping watch, observation觀察guānchá
観点kantenpoints of interest on a tour觀點guāndiǎn
外観gaikanexterior外觀wàiguān
景観keikanlandscape景觀jǐngguān
客観kyakkanobjective view客觀kèguān
主観shukansubjective view主觀zhǔguān
悲観hikanpessimistic view悲觀bēiguān
楽観rakkanoptimistic view樂觀lèguān
貫kan
(tsuranu-ku)
to pass through: penetrate; birthplace/origin貫通kantsuupuncture through貫穿guànchuān
貫徹kantetsupuncture all the way through貫徹到底guànchè dàodǐ
突貫tokkanpierce through刺穿cìchuān
酸san
(su-i)
acid酸化sankaacid-ify: oxidation氧化yǎnghuà
酸性sanseiacidity酸性suānxìng
酸素sansoacid-element: oxygen氧氣yǎngqì
酸味sanmiacid-taste: sour酸味suānwèi
胃酸isanstomach-acid: gastric acid胃酸wèisuān
館kan
(yakata, tachi)
a round building: an establishment, shop会館kaikanmeeting hall會館huìguǎn
開館kaikangallery opening開館kāiguǎn
絵画間kaigakangallery畫廊huàláng
館長kanchougallery director, curator館長guǎnzhǎng
映画館eigakancinema, movie theatre電影院diànyǐngyuàn
大使館taishikanembassy大使館dàshǐguǎn
図書館toshokanlibrary圖書館túshūguǎn
博物館hakubutsukanmuseum博物館bówùguǎn
美術館bijutsukanart gallery美術館měishùguǎn
閉館heikangallery closing閉館bìguǎn
旅館ryokanbackpacker's inn旅館lǚguǎn
鰻ban/man
(unagi)
a long round animal: an eel鰻(unagi)eel鰻魚mányú
幻gen
(maboroshi)
fantasy幻影gen.eiillusion幻影huànyǐng
幻想gensoufantasy幻想huànxiǎng
幻惑genwakuconfused, delusional迷惑míhuò, 蠱惑gǔhuò
患kan
(wazara-u)
a patient患者kanjaa patient患者huànzhě
急患kyuukanemergency room patient急診病人jízhěn bìngrén
疾患shikkanacute disease急病jíbìng
慣kan
(na-reru, na-rasu)
full of practice: accustomed慣習kanshuuaccustomed習慣xíguàn
習慣shuukanaccustomed習慣xíguàn
慣用語kanyougocommon phrase慣用語guànyòngyǔ
慣れるna-reruaccustomed to慣於guànyú
慣らすna-rasuenable getting used to使習慣shǐ xíguàn
湾wanround shoreline: a bay湾岸wanganseacoast海灣的沿岸hǎiwān de yán'àn
環kancircular: a ring, environs環境kankyouthe environment環境huánjìng
環境破壊kankyouhakaienvironmental damage環境破壞huánjìng pòhuài
環状kanjouin the shape of a ring環狀huánzhuàng
循環junkana cycle循環xúnhuán
関kan
(seki)
関係kankeiconnections, relationships關係guānxì
関西kansaiKansai (region)關西guānxī
関心kanshinconcern, attention關心guānxīn
関するkan-suruhave a connection with與...有關yǔ...yǒuguān
関節kanzeiarticular joint關節guānjié
関門kansetsuan obstacle/hard level to pass難關nánguān
難関nankanan obstacle/hard level to pass難關nánguān
関与kanyoparticipation參與cānyù
関連kanrenassociation (connection)關聯guānlián
連関renkanassociation (connection)關聯guānlián
機関kikanauthority, office機關jīguān
税関zeikancustoms海關hǎiguān
頑gan
(kataku-na)
stubborn, strong-willed頑固gankostubborn固執gùzhí
頑張るganbarugo! go!加油jiāyóu
頑強gankyoutenacious頑強wánqiáng
頑丈ganjousturdy堅固jiāngù
元gen/gan
(moto)
beginning of a cycle: origin元気genkienergy精神jīngshén
元素gensoelement元素yuánsù
復元fukugenreturn to original state恢復原狀huīfù yuánzhuàng
元金gankincapital本金běnjīn
元日ganjitsuJanuary 1st元旦yuándàn
元本ganponassets財產cáichǎn
元来ganraioriginally本來běnlái
全zen
(sube-te, matta-ku)
all, fully, complete全部zenbucompletely全部quánbù
全般zenpanoverall整體zhěngtǐ
券kenscroll: a ticket株券kabukena stock股票gǔpiào
証券shoukenoverall證券zhèng-q/juàn
勧kan
(susu-meru)
advise勧告kankoku勸告quàngào
巻kan
(ma-ku, maki)
a scroll一巻ikkanone roll一卷yījuàn
原gen
(hara)
beginning of a cycle: source, primal原因gen.incause原因yuányīn
原型genkeiprototype原型yuánxíng
原稿genkouoriginal draft/manuscript原稿yuángǎo
原語gengosource language原文yuánwén
原人genjinprimitive man原始人yuánshǐrén
原則gensokuprinciple原則yuánzé
原爆genbakuatomic explosion原子彈爆炸yuánzǐdàn bàozhà
平原heigena plain平原píngyuán
反hon/han
(so-ru, so-rasu)
finish a cycle: to return, to oppose反映han.eia reflection反映fǎnyìng
反感hankandislike反感fǎngǎn
反逆hangyakurebellious叛逆pànnì
反響echo回聲huíshēng
反擊hangekicounterattack反擊fǎnjí
反抗hankourevolt反抗fǎnkàng
反射hanshareflect light back反射fǎnshè
反省hanseiinspect oneself's behaviour反省fǎnxǐng
反則hansokubreak the rules違反規則wéifǎn guīzé
反対hantenopposition反對fǎnduì
反應hannouresponse反應fǎnyìng
反問hanmonask back反問fǎnwèn
反論hanronparadox反論fǎnlùn
員inpersonnel
圈kena large ring or circle圈內kennaiwithin range範圍之內
園en
(sono)
a yard or garden公園kou.enpark公園
円en
(maru-i)
a round dollar円形enkeicircular圓形yuánxíng
円満enmansatisfactory圓滿yuánmǎn
長円chouenoval橢圓tuǒyuán
宛en
(ate, zutsu, ataka-mo)
winding宛然enzensimilar宛若
宣sendeclare宣告senkokuannounce宣告
怨an/en
(ura-mu)
feedback: to complain怨念onnen怨恨
恋ren
(ko-u, koi, koi-shii)
filled with love: loving恋愛ren.ailove戀愛
拳ken
(kobushi)
a curled up hand: a fist拳闘kentouattack拳擊
捲ken
(ma-ku, maku-ru)
to curl up捲土重來kendochourai捲土重來
援en
(tasu-keru)
a round group of assistants helping you finish: assist援護engo援救
旋sena whorl, to swirl旋回senkaiturn, alter course旋轉
晚banend of day cycle: evening今晚konbantonight今晚
権gon/kenright, authority権限kengenaccess權限
泉sen
(izumi)
a spring, a source of water泉水sensuispring water泉水
源gen
(minamoto)
source of water, a beginning源泉gensena spring源泉
煩bon/han
(wazura-u, wazura-wasu)
disturb or bother煩雑hanzatsuto trouble麻煩máfan
煩悩bonnoubothersome煩惱fánnǎo
猿en
(saru)
source of man: a primitive ape野猿yaenwild ape野生猿猴yěshēng yuánhóu
絹ken
(kinu)
silk本絹honkenpure silk純絲
繁han
()
complex
翻hon
()
to turn over, to translate
万ban/man
(yorozu)
a round number: ten thousand万能bannoua myriad of uses萬能
軟nan
()
if it's round, then it's not sharp: soft
返hen
()
to return
遠on/en
(too-i)
far遠視enshifar-sighted遠視
選sen
(era-bu)
lay out your choices in a circle: choose, elect, select選挙senkyoelection選舉
鉛en
(namari)
long and round in a pencil: lead鉛毒endokulead poisoning鉛毒
院ina round building with a round yard: a courtyard, an institution院長inchouminister院長yuànzhǎng
医院iinhospital醫院yīyuàn
退院taiinrelease from hospital出院chūyuàn
大学院daigakuinresearch institute研究所yánjiūsuǒ
入院nyuuinadmit to hospital入院rùyuàn
病院byouinhospital醫院yīyuàn
養老院yourouinelderly home養老院yǎnglǎoyuàn
願gan
(nega-u)
complete or fulfill a wish: a request or wish願意gan.irequest請求qǐngqiú
願書ganshoapplication申請書shēnqǐngshū
願望ganbouwish願望yuànwàng
飯han
(meshi)
a round bowl of rice: food, rice飯店hantenhotel/restaurant飯店fàndiàn
朝飯asahanbreakfast早飯zǎofàn
夕飯yuuhandinner晚飯wǎnfàn
残飯zanpanleftovers剩飯shèng fàn
県ken
(agata)
circular area: county, prefecture, region県境kenzakaiprovincial border縣境
淵en
(fuchi)
beginning of a cycle: source淵源engensouce淵源yuānyuán
犬ken
(inu)
a dog twirls chasing its tail: a dog犬歯kenshicanine teeth犬齒
玄gen
(kurou)
long and round: a string玄米genmai糙米
丹tansmall and round: a pellet丹精tanseiintention用心yòngxīn
丹念tannenpay attention to details細心xìxīn
乾ken/kan
()
strong, dry
刊kan
()
annual cycle: regularly published periodical
単tansingle, solitary単価tankaunit price單價dānjià
単元tangenunit單元dānyuán
単語tangoa word單字dānzì
単純tanjunpure, unsophisticated, naive單純dānchún
単身tanshinsingle單身dānshēn
単独tandokualone單獨dāndú
単なるtan-naruonly只zhǐ
簡単kantansimple簡單jiǎndān
壇dana round pedestal: a pedestal, stage, forum壇上danjouon stage臺上táishàng
演壇endanspeech podium演壇yǎntán
安an
()
a peaceful world: peace
寒kan
()
the annual cycle: winter
岸gan
()
a round shoreline: a coast
干kan
()
long and round: a pole, a trunk
幹kan
()
long and round: a pole, a trunk
弾dan
()
small and round: a bullet
散san
()
around: walk or scatter around
旦tan
()
beginning of annual cycle, depicting sunrise over the horizon: January 1st
案an
()
a case full of papers: a case
檀dan/tan
()
sandalwood
欄ran
()
long and round: a railing
殘zan
()
not complete, deficient: disabled/cruel
汗kan
()
small and round: a bead of sweat
漢kan
()
big and round: China, Chinese
炭tan
()
round and black: charcoal
看kan
()
look around: see
肝kan
()
body organ: liver
誕tan
()
annual cycle: birthday
贊san
()
agreement
難nan
()
difficult
姦kan
()
rape
山san
()
large and round like Mt Fuji: a mountain
慢man
()
slowly満身manshincomplacency自滿zìmǎn
我慢gamanpatience忍耐rěnnài
棧san
()
a round-log building: a traveler's lodge
版hana printing this time round: an edition版画hangaengraving版畫bǎnhuà
版権hankencopyright版權bǎnquán
再版saihanreprint再版zàibǎn
初版shohanfirst edition初版chūbǎn
新版shinpannew version新版xīnbǎn
出版shuppanpublishing出版chūbǎn
絶版zeppanout of print絕版juébǎn
產san
()
source: to generate, give birth, produce
眼gen/gan
()
round and small: an eye
簡kan
()
simple
閑kan
()
open and free time: leisure
間ken/kan
()
open space
限gen
()
limit on the cycle: limited
顏gan
()
cycle of colors: color
件ken
()
a piece
便ben/bin
(nayori)
convenient便宜bengiconvenience方便fāngbiàn
便所benjorestroom廁所cèsuǒ
便利benriconvenience便利biànlì
簡便kanbeneasy簡易jiǎnyì
不便fubeninconvenience不方便bùfāngbiàn
便乗binjouhitchhike搭便車dābiànchē
郵便局yuubinkyokupost office郵局yóujú
航空便koukuubinairmail航空信hángkōngxìn
健ken
()
well built: healthy and strong
善zen
()
satisfactory and good
展ten
()
a round display: an exhibition
延en
()
extend
建kon/ken
()
build
弁ben
(wakima-eru)
change弁解benkaijustify, explain辯解biànjiě
弁護bengodefense辯護biànhù
弁護士bengoshilawyer律師lǜshī
弁済bensairepay償還chánghuán
弁償benshoudialectics辯證biànzhèng
弁証benshoucompensation賠償péicháng
弁舌benzetsueloquence口才kǒucái
弁当bentoulunch box便當biàndāng
弁理士benrishia notary代書dàishū
弁論benrona debate辯論biànlùn
弁えるwakima-eruto distinguish辨別biànbié
憲ken
()
a scroll: the constitution
戦sen
()
war
扇sen
()
a fan door
浅sen
()
shallow
演en
()
acting
然nen/zen
()
methodology
煎sen
()
pan-fry a round egg in a round pan: pan-fry, cook
燃nen
()
caught fire
献kon/ken
()
display, offer
禅zen
()
healthy mind: zen
箭sen
()
from one point to another: an arrow
線sen
()
long and round: a line, a string
編hen
(amu)
to finish a manuscript: to edit編集henshuueditor編輯biānjí
短編tanpenshort story短篇duǎnpiān
繕zen
()
bring back to original condition: to repair
羨sen/en
()
envy
言gon/gen
()
origin of language at the mouth: words
軒ken
()
a round building: a pavilion
連ren
()
connecting
遣ken
()
遷sen
()
銭sen
()
round coins: money
面men
(omo, omote, tsura)
round face: a face面会menkaiface-to-face meeting面會miànhuì
面するmen-surufacing面向miànxiàng
面積mensekitotal area面積miànjī
面接mensetsuan interview面試miànshì
面談mendantalking face-to-face面談miàntán
海面kaimenon the sea海面hǎimiàn
外面gaimenoutside外面wàimiàn
前面zenmenin front前面qiánmiàn
内面naimeninside裡面lǐmiàn
表面hyoumenon the surface, superficial表面biǎomiàn
平面heimenflat surface平面píngmiàn
方面houmenin what aspect方面fāngmiàn
鮮sen
()
a big round net full of fish: fresh
先sen
()
典ten
()
前zen
()
千sen
()
a round number: thousand
堅ken
()
solid and strong: firm
填ten
()
fulfilled and filled up: to fill in details
天ten
()
the sky is big and round: the sky
宴en
()
a banquet with big round tables: a banquet
年nen
()
annual cycle: the year
弦gen
()
long and round: a string for musical instruments
憐ren
()
煙en
()
smoke
牽ken
()
connect hands in a circle: hold hands
現gen
()
currently
田den
()
a round field: a field
研ken
()
to grind smooth: to research
練ren
()
strength: practice
肩ken
()
strength and support: a shoulder
蓮ren
()
薦sen
()
recommendation
見ken
()
賢ken
()
辺hen
(atari, be)
a side辺境henkyouborder邊境biānjìng
辺土hendoremote偏遠piānyuǎn
右辺uhenright side右邊yòubiān
左辺sahenleft side左邊zuǒbiān
周辺shuuhensurrounding, around周圍zhōuwéi
近辺kinpenvicinity附近fùjìn
身辺shinpenby one's side身邊shēnbiān
海辺umibeseaside海邊hǎibiān
辺りata-rinearby附近fùjìn
電den
()
a circuit of: electricity
顛ten
()
to turn over, flip over, upside down
顕ken
()
to display

Michael Campbell

Polyglot, phonologist, linguist specialising in Formosan, PAN, Sinitic, Slavic, typology, IPA, and L2. Does GSR training daily.

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