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Sunday, January 07, 2007



Ah it's not Gion go, it should be Gitai go. Brian, that is so true. Thanks


the sound of a bean in a can is "rattle"


The English word "onomatopoeia" is the nearest equivalent to these sound combinations in Japanese, but the translation can be somewhat less than exact. Onomatopoeia only deals with words portraying sounds, such as "bang," "zoom," "clank," etc.

Japanese words that repeat for a particular effect may in fact be true onomatopoeia if they describe sounds, such as "karan-karan." This is equivalent to the Japanese "giongo" (擬音語) form.

Similar style words that describe situations, attitudes, etc. do not have an equivalent name in English, but in Japanese are called "gitaigo" (擬態語).

The explanation is confirmed here in English:

The The National Institute for Japanese Language discusses it here:


hmm i thought the onomatopoeia "オロオロ" was totally made up by the comedian Ken Shimura (and later copied in るろうに剣心 anime, but Ken Shimura was definitely first).
sooo it's not the case then :)


Reading this post is exactly the main reason why I am studying Japanese language. onomatopoeia sounds really interesting.

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