sci.lang.japan FAQ

4. Words from other languages

Although present-day Japanese usually borrows from English for new words (see 5. Japanese and English), many Japanese words, such as the words for coffee, bread, and cigarettes, originated from Portuguese (see 4.2. Which Japanese words come from Portuguese?) and Dutch (see 4.4. Which Japanese words come from Dutch?) and date back hundreds of years. Another big influence was German (see 4.3. Which Japanese words come from German?), particularly in medicine, during the Meiji restoration.

An "urban legend" is that arigatō (`thank you' in Japanese) originates from Portuguese `obrigado'. In fact this is just a coincidence: see 4.1. Is related to Portuguese "obrigado"?.

Sub-pages


sci.lang.japan FAQ

Copyright © 1994-2015 Ben Bullock

If you have questions, corrections, or comments, please contact Ben Bullock or use the discussion forum / Privacy

Book reviews Convert<br>Japanese<br>numbers Handwritten<br>kanji<br>recognition Stroke order<br>diagrams Convert<br>Japanese<br>units
Dictionary of Japanese food Make comments automatically Recognize simplified Chinese characters Figlet - giant ascii letters Play reversi against the computer Unix manual pages in English, Korean, and Japanese. Turn numerals into English words