Japanese Annotations

Japanese to English Dictionary and Explanation

Konnichiwa means hello (if this was a phone I would say mushi-mushi when I answered, if it is evening we say konbanwa meaning good evening).

Minna-san needs to be broken down a little as it is two things. Minna is everyone or everybody in the context I have used it in. -san is a honourfic placed on names in Japan, it is a sign of respect and often shows relationships and status. -san is your basic or general prefix used between equals of any age but there is also -chan (used for endearment but often used for babies, young children, grandparents and teenage girls but can also be used for cute animals, lovers, close friends, any youthful woman or between friends), -bo (used for babies and young children but only for boys), -kun (used by persons of senior status in addressing or referring to those of junior status as well as addressing male children or teenagers and male friends but can be used for females as well as by females when they have known the male for a long time or have an emotional attachment to), -sama (is the more respectful version of san and is used mainly to refer to people much higher in rank than oneself, toward a customer and someone a person greatly admires), -senpai (used to refer to one’s senior colleagues in a school, a dojo, or sports team), -sensei (used to refer to or address teachers, doctors, politicians, lawyers and other authority figures as well is used to show respect to those who have achieved a certain level of mastery in an art form or some other skill), and -hakase (this is for my professor Dr. Sara’s benefit as this is the honourific she would be known as, as it addresses a person with very high academic expertise and translates as doctor but closer to professor).

Hime is princess.

Anime is japanese animation or “cartoons” (but do not call it a cartoon to an anime fan they usually take offence). Manga is

Otaku is in English meant to refer to an obsessive fan of anime/manga and/or Japanese culture generally, and Japanese video games. In Japan, it is slang for geek and relates to a fan of any particular theme, topic, hobby or any form of entertainment. I will also add there are negative connotations with the word otaku in Japan due to a few incidents of crime against otakus or due to otaku culture. This has also caused many who know about the negative connotations in English not to want to be referred to as such. Otakus is a similar label as trekkie, fanboy/girl, and brony (please do not ask about the last one as I will rant).

Gomennasai means I beg your pardon, excuse me; it is a kind of way to apologize or say sorry.

Ja ne is an informal way of saying see you.

Kanji is the modern Japanese writing system along with hiragana, and katakana.

Hiragana is a Japanese component of the writing system.  It has character sets and represents one sound in the language. It is used for native words for which there are no kanji for as well as obscure kanji, not known by the writer/readers or is too formal for the writing purposes.

Katakana is similar to hiragana but is used to break down more complex kanji. It is primarily used for transcription of foreign language words into Japanese. This often used for other people’s names that are not Japanese. For instance, my name broken down and translated is Ji yo di  in romaji.

Sayonara means goodbye.

Sugoi in the context I used it means awesome, great, terrific but it can also mean terrible, dreadful. Most often you hear this shouted by the genki (energetic) male lead characters of any Shonen Jump series such as Naruto and One Piece.

Arigato is thank you.

Owari is the end.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. doctorsara
    Nov 27, 2012 @ 14:29:54

    Thanks for this! I look forward to more posts!


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