sci.lang.japan FAQ / 12. Numbers, counting, and dates

12.5. What are Japanese number puns?

Japanese people often make puns using words to represent numbers, or numbers to represent words. An example is the mnemonic to remember the year 1192, the year of the start of the Kamakura Shogunate, with ii kuni tsukurou (いい国つくろう), where the two ones become ii, "good", the nine becomes ku, and the two becomes ni. The name "Yakuza" for Japanese gangsters also originated from a number; see 3.7. What is the origin of ?. In Japanese the name of these puns is goroawase (語呂合わせ).

Number puns are often used in advertisements as a way of helping people to remember telephone numbers.

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sci.lang.japan FAQ / 12. Numbers, counting, and dates

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