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Onomatopoeic Phrases (1) - Learn some onomatopoeic phrases to describe "laughing."

Onomatopoeic Phrases (1)
Expressions to describe "laughing"



Japanese is filled with onomatopoeic phrases, the words that describe sound or action directly. There are two categories: giongo and gitaigo. Giongo are the words which express voice or sounds. Gitaigo are the words which express actions, states or human emotions. They are often made of more than one word, which is the same word repeated again.

Onomatopoeic phrases are widely used in news headlines because they are perfect to describe things using short words. They are frequently used in advertising because of their catchy, appealing sounds. Manga (Japanese comics) probably couldn't exist without them.

English also has onomatopoeic phrases, but their use is limited, more practical and not as poetic as those found in Japanese. Japanese onomatopoeic phrases are frequently use by poets or writers of Japanese literature.

Laughing can be described by different verbs in English. However, Japanese has only one "laughing" verb, warau. It can't be used to describe how you laugh without the addition of onomatopoeic phrases. Here are onomatopoeic phrases that describe laughing. Some of the phrases are combined with the verb "warau" and some with the verb "suru (to do)".

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Onomatopoeic Phrases (2) - Learn some onomatopoeic phrases to describe "sleeping."

Expressions to describe "sleeping"

This is another look at onomatopoeic phrases. They are the words that describe sound or action directly. Giongo are the words which express voice or sounds. Gitaigo are the words which express actions, states or human emotions.

Here are some onomatopoeic phrases to describe sleeping



Learn how they are used in a sentence. Some of the phrases are combined with the verb "neru (to sleep)" and some with the verb "suru (to do)".

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Onomatopoeic Phrases (3) - Learn some onomatopoeic phrases related hunger, eating and taste.

Hunger, Eating and Taste

Japanese is filled with onomatopoeic phrases, the words that describe sound or action directly. There are two categories: giongo and gitaigo. Giongo are the words which express voice or sounds. Gitaigo are the words which express actions, states or human emotions. They are often made of more than one word, which is the same word repeated again.

This week we will take a look at onomatopoeic phrases related to hunger, eating, taste and so on.

Hunger



Eating



Taste



Others



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Tanabata Song - Learn some onomatopoeic phrases used in a Tanabata song.

Tanabata Song

Tanabata, the Star Festival, is an event based on a Chinese legend. Two lovers (the stars Altair and Vega), who were separated by the Milky Way, meet just once a year on the night of July 7th.

Here is the song that is sung on Tanabata.



Let's learn some vocabulary from the song.




The words like "sara sara" or "kira kira" are called onomatopoeic phrases (the words that describe sound or action directly). They are often found in Japanese sentences.



Here are other expressions to describe "shaking" or "shining".

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Sing the "Rudolph" Song in Japanese - Learn the onomatopoeic phrase used in the "Rudolph" song.

Let's Sing the "Rudolph" Song in Japanese
Part 1: The "Rudolph" Song in Japanese

As you might already know, the New Year (shogatsu) is the biggest and the most important celebration in Japan. Christmas is not even a national holiday, though December 23rd is, because of the Emperor's birthday. However, the Japanese love to celebrate festivals, and have adopted many Western customs including Christmas. The Japanese celebrate Christmas in a "Japanese way".

There are many Christmas songs translated into Japanese. Here is the Japanese version of "Rudolph, the red-nosed reindeer (Akahana no tonakai)".

Makka na ohana no tonakai-san wa
真っ赤なお鼻のトナカイさんは

Itsumo minna no waraimono
いつもみんなの笑いもの

Demo sono toshi no kurisumasu no hi
でもその年のクリスマスの日

Santa no ojisan wa iimashita
サンタのおじさんは言いました

Kurai yomichi wa pika pika no
暗い夜道はぴかぴかの

Omae no hana ga yaku ni tatsu no sa
おまえの鼻が役に立つのさ

Itsumo naiteta tonakai-san wa
いつも泣いてたトナカイさんは

Koyoi koso wa to yorokobimashita
今宵こそはと喜びました

Vocabulary



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Part 2: Translation of the Lyrics

Here is the explanation of the Japanese lyrics line by line.

Makka na ohana no tonakai-san wa

"Ma (真)" is a prefix to emphasize the noun that comes after "ma."



The prefix "o" is added to "hana (nose)" for politeness. The names of animals are sometimes written in katakana, even if they are native Japanese words. In songs or children's books, "san" is often added to the names of the animals to make them more like humans or for friendliness.

Itsumo minna no waraimono

"~ mono (者)" is a suffix to describe the nature of the person.



Demo sono toshi no kurisumasu no hi

"Kurisumasu (クリスマス)" is written in katakana because it is an English word. "Demo (でも)" means "however" or "but". It is a conjunction used at the beginning of a sentence.

Santa no ojisan wa iimashita

Although "ojisan (おじさん)" means "uncle," it is also used when addressing a man.

Kurai yomichi wa pika pika no

"Pika pika (ピカピカ)" is one of the onomatopoeic expressions. It describes giving off a bright light or the glittering of a polished object.




Omae no hana ga yaku ni tatsu no sa

"Omae (お前)" is a personal pronoun, and means "you" in an informal situation. It should not be used to your superior. "Sa (さ)" is a sentence ending particle which emphasizes the sentence.

Itsumo naiteta tonakai-san wa

"~ teta (~てた)" or "~ teita (~ていた)" is the past progressive. "~ teta" is more colloquial. It is used to describe past habitual action or past states of being. To make this form, attach "~ta" or "~ita" to "te form" of the verb.



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how bout doki doki? it says in a manga i've read that it's like the heart is beating fast.
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