The Japanese language reference article from the Simple Wikipedia on 24-Jul-2004
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Japanese language

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Japanese is the language spoken on the island nation of Japan, in East Asia. Japanese has two alphabets, katakana, and hiragana. Katakana is for words from outside of Japan. Hiragana is for words from inside Japan. Each alphabet has letters that you say as sounds, or syllables. Katakana have more straight edges and jagged corners than hiragana. Hiragana is more curvy than katakana.

There is a third way to write, called kanji, where every word or idea has a picture character. 1000s of kanji are needed to read. Many kanji are made from smaller, simpler kanji. Each kanji may sound differently when used in a different way.

Japan has only five vowel sounds. They are ah, E, oo, eh, and O. Japanese has L and R as one sound between L and R. That is why it may be difficult for Japanese to pronounce the English L. Japanese has a sound not found in English, that is usually written Tsu.

Japanese has no spaces between words, so kanji help seperate words in a sentence.

Japanese can be written in 2 ways.

  1. From left to right, to the bottom of the page.
  2. From top to bottom, to the left of the page.

In Japanese, the verb is at the end of the sentence, and the subject is at the begining. The subject can be left out, because a lot of Japanese is implied.

.jp is a domain for Japanese web sites.

In Japanese, Japan is called Nihon, and Japanese is called Nihongo.

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