Gairaigo

loanwordforeign loan wordsloanwords loanwordEnglishEnglish wordsEnglish-derived wordEuropean loanwordsforeign wordsJapanese
Gairaigo is Japanese for "loan word" or "borrowed word", and indicates a transliteration (or "transvocalization") into Japanese.wikipedia
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Japanese language

JapaneseJapanese-languageJp
Gairaigo is Japanese for "loan word" or "borrowed word", and indicates a transliteration (or "transvocalization") into Japanese.
Late Middle Japanese (1185–1600) included changes in features that brought it closer to the modern language, and the first appearance of European loanwords.

Sino-Japanese vocabulary

Sino-JapanesekangoSino-Japanese word
Japanese has a large number of loan words from Chinese, accounting for a sizeable fraction of the language.
The others are native Japanese vocabulary (yamato kotoba) and borrowings from other, mainly Western languages (gairaigo). It is estimated that approximately 60% of the words contained in a modern Japanese dictionary are kango, but they comprise only about 18% of words used in speech.

List of gairaigo and wasei-eigo terms

languagebased on EnglishList of ''gairaigo'' and ''wasei-eigo'' terms
For a list of terms, see the List of gairaigo and wasei-eigo terms.
This is a selected list of gairaigo, Japanese words originating or based on foreign language (generally Western) terms, including wasei-eigo (Japanese pseudo-Anglicisms).

Katakana

kanakatakana scriptアィヌ
These are primarily written in the katakana phonetic script, with a few older terms written in Chinese characters (kanji); this latter are known as ateji. In written Japanese, gairaigo are usually written in katakana.
In contrast to the hiragana syllabary, which is used for Japanese words not covered by kanji and for grammatical inflections, the katakana syllabary usage is quite similar to italics in English; specifically, it is used for transcription of foreign language words into Japanese and the writing of loan words (collectively gairaigo); for emphasis; to represent onomatopoeia; for technical and scientific terms; and for names of plants, animals, minerals, and often Japanese companies.

Furigana

forced readingruby charactersruby text
Modern Chinese loanwords are generally considered gairaigo and written in katakana, or sometimes written in kanji (either with the more familiar word as a base text gloss and the intended katakana as furigana or vice versa); pronunciation of modern Chinese loanwords generally differs from the corresponding usual pronunciation of the characters in Japanese.
Very long readings also occur for certain kanji or symbols which have a gairaigo reading; the word "centimeter" is generally written as "cm" (with two half-width characters, so occupying one space) and has the seven-kana reading センチメートル (senchimētoru) (it can also be written as the kanji 糎, though this is very rare); another common example is "%" (the percent sign), which has the five kana reading パーセント (pāsento). These cause severe spacing problems due to length and these words being used as units (hence closely associated to the preceding figure).

Japanese writing system

JapaneseJapanese charactersJapanese writing
In written Japanese, gairaigo are usually written in katakana.
Kana itself consists of a pair of syllabaries: hiragana, used primarily for native or naturalised Japanese words and grammatical elements, and katakana, used primarily for foreign words and names, loanwords, onomatopoeia, scientific names, and sometimes for emphasis.

Ateji

transcription
These are primarily written in the katakana phonetic script, with a few older terms written in Chinese characters (kanji); this latter are known as ateji.
Note that while kun'yomi are generally written as hiragana when writing out the word in kana instead of kanji (because native Japanese), these gairaigo "kun'yomi" are generally written as katakana (because a foreign borrowing).

Kanji

on'yomikun'yomicharacters
These are primarily written in the katakana phonetic script, with a few older terms written in Chinese characters (kanji); this latter are known as ateji.
Katakana are mostly used for representing onomatopoeia, non-Japanese loanwords (except those borrowed from ancient Chinese), the names of plants and animals (with exceptions), and for emphasis on certain words.

Wasei-eigo

Japanese-Englishwasei eigoJapanese English
There are numerous causes for confusion in gairaigo: (1) gairaigo are often abbreviated, (2) their meaning may change (either in Japanese or in the original language after the borrowing has occurred), (3) many words are not borrowed but rather coined in Japanese (wasei-eigo "English made in Japan"), and (4) not all gairaigo come from English.
Wasei-eigo is often confused with gairaigo, which is simply loanwords or "words from abroad".

Puroresu

Japanese professional wrestlingjoshijoshi puroresu
Similarly, puroresu derives from "professional wrestling", and has been adopted by English-speaking wrestling fans as a term for the style of pro wrestling performed in Japan.
The term comes from the Japanese pronunciation of "professional wrestling", which is shortened to puroresu.

Gemination

geminategeminatedgeminate consonant
This change in Japanese phonology following the introduction of foreign words (here primarily from English) can be compared to the earlier posited change in Japanese phonology following the introduction of Chinese loanwords, such as closed syllables (CVC, not just CV) and length becoming a phonetic feature with the development of both long vowels and long consonants – see Early Middle Japanese: Phonological developments.
With the influx of gairaigo ("foreign words") into Modern Japanese, voiced consonants have become able to geminate as well: バグ (bagu) means "(computer) bug", and バッグ (baggu) means "bag".

Honorific speech in Japanese

keigohonorifichonorifics
However, arigatō is not a gairaigo; rather, it is an abbreviation of arigatō gozaimasu, which consists of an inflection of the native Japanese adjective arigatai combined with the polite verb gozaimasu.
Foreign loanwords (gairaigo, except those that come from Chinese; see above) seldom take honorifics, but when they do o- seems to be preferable to go-.

Engrish

broken Englishpoorly translated EnglishEnglish
Engrish
Katakana script is used in daily life for many foreign words used with Japanese ("Gairaigo").

Reborrowing

reborrowedalso givenborrowed back
Some gairaigo words have been reborrowed into their original source languages, particularly in the jargon of fans of Japanese entertainment.
Gairaigo

Glossary of Japanese words of Portuguese origin

borrowings from PortugueseinfluenceJapanese ''arigatō'' and Portuguese ''obrigado
Japanese words of Portuguese origin
Gairaigo

Loanword

loanwordsloan wordborrowed
Gairaigo is Japanese for "loan word" or "borrowed word", and indicates a transliteration (or "transvocalization") into Japanese.

Transliteration

translit.transliteratedtransliterate
Gairaigo is Japanese for "loan word" or "borrowed word", and indicates a transliteration (or "transvocalization") into Japanese.

Chinese language

ChineseRegional dialectChinese:
In particular, the word usually refers to a Japanese word of foreign origin that was not borrowed in ancient times from Old or Middle Chinese, but in modern times, primarily from English or from other European languages.

English language

EnglishEnglish-languageen
Most, but not all, modern gairaigo are derived from English, particularly in the post-World War II era (after 1945).

Portugal

Portuguese🇵🇹POR
The first non-Asian countries to have extensive contact with Japan were Portugal and the Netherlands in the 16th and 17th centuries, and Japanese has several loanwords from Portuguese and Dutch, many of which are still used.

Netherlands

Dutch🇳🇱the Netherlands
The first non-Asian countries to have extensive contact with Japan were Portugal and the Netherlands in the 16th and 17th centuries, and Japanese has several loanwords from Portuguese and Dutch, many of which are still used.

Portuguese language

PortuguesePortuguese-languageBrazilian Portuguese
The first non-Asian countries to have extensive contact with Japan were Portugal and the Netherlands in the 16th and 17th centuries, and Japanese has several loanwords from Portuguese and Dutch, many of which are still used.

Dutch language

DutchDutch-languagenl
The first non-Asian countries to have extensive contact with Japan were Portugal and the Netherlands in the 16th and 17th centuries, and Japanese has several loanwords from Portuguese and Dutch, many of which are still used.

Meiji period

MeijiMeiji eraMeiji-period
In the Meiji era (late 19th to early 20th century), Japan also had extensive contact with Germany, and gained many loanwords from German, particularly for Western medicine, which the Japanese learned from the Germans.