Romaji use with English in a sentence
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M / http://myanimelis...
Posted 8/20/15 , edited 8/20/15
I have been slowly learning to understand Japanese over the years from watching anime. I still only read a smidgen of written Japanese, but sometimes I can get the gist of what is being said with my limited understanding without reading the subtext translation.

So, when I see others use the more common Romaji words mixed into a sentence, I can often times understand them for what they mean. However, many times I am unsure if the word I see is just poor English spelling, Romaji, or even misspelled Romaji.

That brings me to my question:
Is there an (semi)official way to identify Romaji when used in an English sentence? e.g. through the use of brackets or punctuation? .. or something that identifies the word or phrase as being from another language?

If it's something established, please post a link for reference.


p.s. I will post this question in the few places (groups and forum) where it may be applicable.
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42 / M / Right behind you!
Posted 8/20/15 , edited 8/20/15
Foreign are supposed to be italicized in proper English. Foreign words that have become common usage in English, often called loan words, (i.e. karate, sushi) are not.
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50 / M / KC
Posted 8/20/15 , edited 8/20/15
Italicized or quoted is acceptable.

You do something similar in English.

He circled "that" on the paper.

Since "that" is quoted, it is being used as a noun. It is clear that we are talking about the word "that" and not something else.

If it wasn't quoted, it would be an determiner: a word that identifies something specific and previously known.

He circled that on the paper.

We don't know what he circled, but it is something that is known from the context.

So, when you are discussing romaji words, then they really need to be quoted or italicized.
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23 / M / Poland
Posted 8/20/15 , edited 8/20/15
Hello and welcome, it's always nice to see a new face here :)

If I may have a favour, as a mod: whenever you have questions about Japanese language in general (be it grammar, writing, etc.), please post them in the Japanese Language Help topic. Here's a link in case you needed it:

I might move this elsewhere (if only possible) later.

Okay, that's all from me for now. And again, good to have you with us :)
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