Japanese Online Word and Phrasebook with Audio

beginner Japanese vocabulary

Introductions

beginner Japanese vocabulary

These words and phrases are often used when first meeting someone.

はじめまして。

hajimemashite

Nice to meet you.

Listen to the audio and try to mimic the pronunciation

どうぞよろしくおねがいします。

douzo yoroshiku onegaishimasu

Nice to meet you
[Note: often said after hajimemashite and literally means something like "look kindly on me (for the future)"]

日本語が少し話せます。

nihongo ga sukoshi hanasemasu.

I can speak a little Japanese.

英語が分かりますか?

eigo ga wakarimasu ka?

Do you understand English?

私はアメリカから来ました。

watashi wa amerika kara kimashita.

I am from America.

私は__です。

watashi wa ___ desu.

I am ___.

私の名前は__です。

watashi no namae wa __ desu.

My name is ___.

私は__と申します。

watashi wa __ to moushimasu.

My name is ___. (polite)

お名前は?

onamae wa?

What is your name?

こちらは___さんです。

kochira wa ____ san desu.

This is Mr. (or Ms.) ____.

Greetings

beginner Japanese vocabulary

These words and expressions are useful when greeting friends daily.

Morning

おはようございます。

ohayou gozaimasu

Good morning; hello

Afternoon

こんにちは。

konnichi wa

Hello

Evening

こんばんは。

konban wa

Good evening; hello

おやすみなさい。

oyasumi nasai

Good night

Conversation Starters

元気ですか?

genki desu ka?

How are you?

元気です。

genki desu.

I'm fine.

最近どうですか?

saikin dou desu ka?

How have you been recently?

ひさしぶり。

hisashiburi

It has been a while.

Saying Good-bye

じゃあ、またね。

jaa, mata ne

See you later.

さようなら。

sayounara

Good-bye

気をつけて。

ki o tsukete

Take care; be careful

失礼します。

shitsurei shimasu

Excuse me

バイバイ。

bai bai

Bye bye

Other

ようこそ

youkoso

Welcome

ありがとう

arigatou

Thank you

どういたしまして。

dou itashimashite

You are welcome.

Common Words & Phrases

beginner Japanese vocabulary

These words and expressions are useful when greeting friends daily.

NOTE: If your browser has a problem where it buffers endlessly after playing 11-13 of these flash sound files, please update your Adobe Flash to the latest version.

Language Words

英語

eigo

English

日本語

nihongo

Japanese (language)

日本

nihon

Japan

Question Words



nani

what

これは何?

kore wa nani?

What's this?

だれ

dare

who

だれですか?

dare desu ka?

Who is that?

いつ

itsu

when

いつきますか?

itsu kimasu ka?

When will (you) come?

どこ

doko

where

店はどこですか?

mise wa doko desu ka?

Where is the store?

どう

dou

how

ピザはどうですか?

piza wa dou desu ka?

How about pizza?
(or you could be asking, "How is your pizza?")

どうして

doushite

why

どうして行きませんでしたか?

doushite ikimasen deshita ka?

Why didn't you go?

 

People Words

日本人

nihon jin

Japanese (person)

アメリカ人

amerika jin

American (person)

カナダ人

kanada jin

Canadian (person)

イギリス人

igirisu jin

English (person)

オーストラリア人

o-sutoraria jin

Australian (person)

韓国人

kankoku jin

Korean (person)

中国人

chuugoku jin

Chinese (person)

 

Pronouns



watashi

I, me

私の

watashi no

my

あなた

anata

you

あなたの

anata no

your (possessive)

私たち

watashi tachi

we; us

私たちの

watashi tachi no

our; ours (plural possessive)

あなたたち

anata tachi

you (plural)

あなたたちの

anata tachi no

yours (plural possessive)



kare

he; him

彼の

kare no

his (possessive)

彼女

kanojo

she; her

彼女の

kanojo no

her; hers (possessive)

Useful Expressions for Conversation

beginner Japanese vocabulary

These expressions are useful in everyday conversations.

NOTE: If your browser has a problem where it buffers endlessly after playing 11-13 of these flash sound files, please update your Adobe Flash to the latest version.

Phrases

もっとゆっくり話してください。

motto yukkuri hanashite kudasai

Please speak slower.

もう一回話してください。

mou ikkai hanashite kudasai.

Please say that again.

あのう、すみませんが・・・

anou, sumimasen ga...

Sorry to bother you, but... (used to get the listener's attention)

はい、そうです。

hai, sou desu.

Yes, that's right.

そのとおりです。

sono toori desu.

That's exactly right.

いいえ、違います。

iie, chigaimasu.

No, that's wrong.

分かりません。

wakarimasen

I don't understand.

分かりますか?

wakarimasu ka?

Do you understand?

はい、分かります。

hai, wakarimasu

Yes, I understand.y

よく分かりません。

yoku
wakarimasen.
I don't get it.

そうですか?

sou desu ka?

Is that so?

本当ですか?

hontou desu ka?

Are you sure?; Is that true?

本当に?

hontou ni?

Really?

信じられません。

shinjiraremasen

I don't believe it!

もちろん。

mochiron

of course!

用意ができました。

youi ga dekimashita

I'm (we're) ready.

いろいろありがとうございました。

iroiro arigatou gozaimashita

Thanks for everything.

教えてくださってありがとう。

oshiete kudasatte arigatou.

Thank you for your suggestions (help).

Power Words

beginner Japanese vocabulary

Power Words: Small Words with a Big Punch

NOTE: If your browser has a problem where it buffers endlessly after playing 11-13 of these flash sound files, please update your Adobe Flash to the latest version.

Power Words

おめでとう

omedetou

Congratulations

がんばって

ganbatte

Do your best! You can do it! Good luck!

すみません

sumimasen

Sorry; excuse me

本当に?

hontou ni?

Really? Is that true?

うそ!

uso!

You're kidding!

大丈夫

daijoubu

OK

同じ

onaji

the same

やっぱり

yappari

Of course! As expected...

実は

jitsu wa

the fact is...; actually

ところで

tokoro de

By the way

たとえば

tatoeba

For example

そういえば

sou ieba

Speaking of which...

念のため

nen no tame

Just in case

つまり

tsumari

That is...

できるだけ

dekiru dake

As much as possible

気のせい

ki no sei

Just (my) imagination

なるほど

naruhodo

I see!

ちょっと

chotto

Little (often used to soften a statement)

すごい

sugoi

Cool; awesome

ピンチ・大ピンチ


pinchi
daipinchi

Oh no! (Said when in a 'pinch')

 

Emotion Words

楽しい

tanoshii

Fun; pleasant

悲しい

kanashii

Sad

すばらしい

subarashii

Wonderful

残念

zannen

Too bad!

On Numbers

beginner Japanese vocabulary

Numbers 1-10

For a more detailed discussion on Japanese numbers, please go here.

NOTE: If your browser has a problem where it buffers endlessly after playing 11-13 of these flash sound files, please update your Adobe Flash to the latest version.

The 'Chinese' Numbers are used for general counting above ten and with counters.
The 'Japanese' Numbers are used for general counting 1-10 but not with counters.

Chinese Numbers



ichi

One



ni

Two



san

Three



shi

yon

Four (two pronunciations)



go

Five



roku

Six



shichi

nana

Seven



hachi

Eight



kyuu

ku

Nine



juu

Ten

Japanese Numbers

一つ

hitotsu

One

二つ

futatsu

Two

三つ

mittsu

Three

四つ

yottsu

Four

五つ

itsutsu

Five

六つ

muttsu

Six

七つ

nanatsu

Seven

八つ

yattsu

Eight

九つ

kokonotsu

Nine



too

Ten

On Counters

This flash file presents several common counters in Japanese. Click on any number to hear it spoken.

Japanese Beginners DownloadPlease Note:
This is excerpted from our $5 download Beginners Vocabulary Flash Download - It includes over 500 sound files in a convenient Flash program all for only $5! Please checkout the page for more information!

Time

beginner Japanese vocabulary

Times, Dates, and Seasons

For a more detailed discussion on Japanese numbers.
For a lesson on telling the time in Japanese.

NOTE: If your browser has a problem where it buffers endlessly after playing 11-13 of these flash sound files, please update your Adobe Flash to the latest version.

Days of the Week

日曜日

nichiyoubi

Sunday

月曜日

getsuyoubi

Monday

火曜日

kayoubi

Tuesday

水曜日

suiyoubi

Wednesday

木曜日

mokuyoubi

Thursday

金曜日

kinyoubi

Friday

土曜日

doyoubi

Saturday

Seasons



haru

Spring



natsu

Summer



aki

Fall; Autumn



fuyu

Winter

Expressions

何時ですか?

nan ji desu ka?

What time is it?

何曜日ですか?

nan youbi desu ka?

What day is today?

最近どう?

saikin dou?

How have things been recently?

来年日本に行きます。

rainen nihon ni ikimasu

I'm going to Japan next year.

 

Months of the Year

一月

ichi gatsu

January

二月

ni gatsu

February

三月

san gatsu

March

四月

shi gatsu

April

五月

go gatsu

May

六月

roku gatsu

June

七月

shichi gatsu

July

八月

hachi gatsu

August

九月

ku gatsu

September

十月

juu gatsu

October

十一月

juu ichi gatsu

November

十二月

juu ni gatsu

December

Time/Date Words

きょう

kyou

Today

きのう

kinou

Yesterday

あした

ashita

Tomorrow

あさって

asatte

Day after tomorrow

先週

sen shuu

Last week

今週

kon shuu
This week

来週

rai shuu

Next week

去年

kyonen

Last year

今年

kotoshi

This year

来年

rainen

Next year



mukashi

Long time ago

最近

saikin

Recently



asa

Morning



hiru

Afternoon



ban

Evening



yoru

Night

夜中

yonaka

Middle of the night

Sizes

beginner Japanese vocabulary

SIZES

Size / Amounts

大きい

ookii
big; large

小さい

chiisai
small

一番

ichiban
#1; the best

一番大きい

ichiban ookii
The biggest; the largest

一番小さいのをください。

ichiban chiisai no o kudasai.
Please give me the smallest one.

 

Weather

Clouds and Sun in Japanesebeginner Japanese vocabulary

WEATHER

Weather Conditions

はれ

hare
sunny

くもり

kumori
cloudy

かみなり

kaminari
thunder

いなずま

inazuma
lightning

かぜ

kaze
wind

 

Other Words

天気

tenki
weather

かさ

kasa
umbrella

天気予報

tenki yohou
weather forecast

むしあつい

mushi atsui
humid

ゆきだるま

yuki daruma
snowman

台風

taifuu
typhoon

Phrases

いい天気ですね。

ii tenki desu ne.
It's nice weather, isn't it?

天気がわるい。

tenki ga warui.
The weather is bad.

ゆきがふっています。

yuki ga futte imasu.
It's snowing.

かぜがつよい。

kaze ga tsuyoi
The wind is blowing hard.

あめがふっています。

ame ga futteimasu.
It's raining.

あめがふりそうです。

ame ga furi sou desu.
It looks like it will rain.

台風がきています

taifuu ga kiteimasu.
A typhoon is coming.

やっとはれてきました。

yatto harete kimashita.
It is finally nice weather.

すずしいです。

suzushii desu.
It's cool (weather).

あたたかいです。

atatakai desu.
It's warm (weather).

あついです。

atsui desu.
It's hot.

さむいです。

samui desu.
It's cold.

とてもいいきもちです。

totemo ii kimochi desu.
It feels really nice.

Food

beginner Japanese vocabulary

Food and Food Words

NOTE: If your browser has a problem where it buffers endlessly after playing 11-13 of these flash sound files, please update your Adobe Flash to the latest version.

Eating Words

いただきます。

itadakimasu
I'm receiving (said just before eating)

おいしそう

oishisou
Looks delicious

おいしい

oishii
Delicious

おいしかった

oishikatta
It was delicious.

ごちそうさまでした

gochisou sama deshita
It was a feast. (Said after eating)

 

Food Words

食べ物

tabemono
Food

飲み物

nomimono
Drinks

食べる

taberu
to Eat

飲む

nomu
to Drink

朝ごはん

asa gohan
Breakfast

昼ごはん

hiru gohan
Lunch

晩ごはん

ban gohan
Supper

おやつ

oyatsu
Snack

お菓子

okashi
Candy / sweets

冷蔵庫

reizouko
Refrigerator

和食

wa shoku
Japanese food

洋食

you shoku
Western food

料理

ryouri
Cooking

中華料理

chuuka ryouri
Chinese food

イタリア料理

itaria ryouri
Italian food

レストラン

resutoran
Restaurant

はし

hashi
Chopsticks

Taste

甘い

amai
Sweet

からい

karai
Hot (spicy)

すっぱい

suppai
Sour

あつい

atsui
Hot

冷たい

tsumetai
Cold (to the touch)

Food



sakana
Fish

すし

sushi
Sushi



niku
Meat

牛肉

gyuu niku
Beef

てんぷら

tenpura
Tempura

味噌汁

miso shiru
Miso soup

ハンバーガー

hanba-ga-
Hamburger

豆腐

toufu
Tofu

納豆

nattou
Natto
[Learn about natto here]

カレーライス

kare- raisu
Curry & Rice

わさび

wasabi
Wasabi

じゃが芋

jaga imo
Potato

さつま芋

satsuma imo
Sweet Potato

にんじん

ninjin
Carrot

たまねぎ

tamanegi
Onion

ねぎ

negi
Green onion

野菜

yasai
Vegetables

Drink

牛乳

gyuunyuu
Milk

豆乳

tounyuu
Soymilk

コーヒー

ko-hi-
Coffee

お茶

ocha
Green tea

紅茶

kou cha
Black tea

麦茶

mugi cha
Barley tea

ビール

bi-ru
Beer



sake
Sake

ワイン

wain
Wine



koori
Ice

Seasoning

砂糖

satou
Sugar



shio
Salt

からし

karashi
(Japanese) mustard

しょうが

shouga
Ginger

しょうゆ

shouyu
Soy sauce

Colors & Adjectives

beginner Japanese vocabulary

Colors & Adjectives

NOTE: If your browser has a problem where it buffers endlessly after playing 11-13 of these flash sound files, please update your Adobe Flash to the latest version.

Color Names



kuro
Black



shiro
White



aka
Red



ao
Blue



midori
Green

黄色

kiiro
Yellow



murasaki
Purple

茶色

chairo
Brown

灰色

haiiro
gray

オレンジ

orenji
Orange

Color Words



iro
Color

白黒

shiro kuro
Black & White (lit. White & Black)

-na Adjectives

有名な

yuumei na
Famous

上手な

jouzu na
Skilled

下手な

heta na
Unskillful

便利な

benri na
Convenient

好きな

suki na
Likable

大事な

daiji na
Important

元気な

genki na
Energetic

静かな

shizuka na
Quiet

-i Adjectives

新しい

atarashii
New

古い

furui
Old

あつい

atsui
Hot (weather)

寒い

samui
Cold (weather)

甘い

amai
Sweet

辛い

karai
Spicy Hot

遅い

osoi
Slow, Late

はやい

hayai
Fast, Early

忙しい

isogashii
Busy

高い

takai
High, Expensive

安い

yasui
Cheap

近い

chikai
Close

遠い

tooi
Far

Names

beginner Japanese vocabulary

Common Japanese Family Names

These are just a few common Japanese names; being familiar with these will help you remember people's names when you meet them.

NOTE: If your browser has a problem where it buffers endlessly after playing 11-13 of these flash sound files, please update your Adobe Flash to the latest version.

青木

Aoki

鈴木

Suzuki

伊藤

Itou

佐藤

Satou

田中

Tanaka

渡辺

Watanabe

小林

Kobayashi

山田

Yamada

中村

Nakamura

吉田

Yoshida

山口

Yamaguchi

松本

Matsumoto

佐々木

Sasaki

清水

Shimizu

竹内

Takeuchi

松岡

Matsuoka

三浦

Miura

森田

Morita

村上

Murakami

西村

Nishimura

山下

Yamashita

安藤

Andou

中山

Nakayama

野村

Nomura

久保

Kubo

新井

Arai

野口

Noguchi

藤原

Fujiwara

池田

Ikeda

中島

Nakajima

石川

Ishikawa

安部

Abe

中野

Nakano

中川

Nakagawa

桜井

Sakurai

岩本

Iwamoto

高村

Takamura

高島

Takashima



Hara

金子

Kaneko

Family Words

Untitled Document

Family words in Japanese image

Japanese Vocabulary: Family Words and Phrases

As you probably know, Japanese often has several ways to say the same thing depending on one's status and to whom one is speaking. Speaking of family members is no different.

Let's first take a look at names for family members:

one's own family other family
father

chichi
father
お父さん
otousan
mother

haha
mother
お母さん
okaasan
husband

otto
husband
ご主人
goshujin
wife

tsuma
wife
奥さん
okusan
son
息子
musuko
son
息子さん
musukosan
daughter

musume
daughter
娘さん
musumesan

Japanese also distinguishes between older and younger siblings:

one's own family other family
older brother

ani
older brother
お兄さん
oniisan
younger brother

otouto
younger brother
弟さん
otoutosan
older sister

ane
older sister
お姉さん
oneesan
younger sister

imouto
younger sister
妹さん
imouto san

oniisan and oneesan are also used in general for young adults (or teenagers).

Extended Family Members:

one's own family other family
grandfather
祖父
sofu
grandfather
おじいさん
ojiisan
grandmother
祖母
sobo
grandmother
おばあさん
obaasan
uncle
叔父
伯父

oji
[Both kanji above are pronounced the same way; the first means the uncle is younger than one's father and the second means the uncle is older.]
uncle
叔父さん
伯父さん

ojisan
[Both kanji above are pronounced the same way; the first means the uncle is younger than one's father and the second means the uncle is older.]
aunt
叔母
伯母

oba
aunt
叔母さん
伯母さん

obasan

Be careful with the obasan / obaasan and ojisan / ojiisan.

General Family Words:

family
家族
kazoku
relatives
親戚
shinseki
parents
両親
ryoushin
children
子供
kodomo
siblings
兄弟
kyoudai
cousins
いとこ
itoko
~in-law
義理の~
giri no~
grandchild

mago
ancestor
先祖
senzo
descendant
子孫
shison
married
結婚
kekkon
single
独身
dokushin

 

Feelings and Emotions

Untitled Document
Feelings and Emotions



元気です。

genki desu.
I'm fine.


あまり元気じゃないです。

amari genki janai desu.
I'm not doing very well.


ちょっと病気です。

chotto byouki desu.
I'm a little sick.


眠いです。

nemui desu.
I'm sleepy.


疲れています。

tsukarete imasu.
I'm tired.


かなしいです。

kanashii desu.
I'm sad.


うれしいです。

ureshii desu.
I'm happy.


たいへんうれしいです。

taihen ureshii desu.
I'm very happy


おかしいです。

okashii desu.
That is strange.


おもしろいです。

omoshiroi desu.
That is interesting/fun.


しあわせです。

shiawase desu.
I'm happy.


最高です。

saikou desu.
This is the best.


最悪です。

saiaku desu.
This is the worst.


最低です。

saitei desu.
This is rock bottom.


切ないです。

setsunai desu.
I'm miserable.


つまらないです。

tsumaranai desu.
This is tiresome.


たいくつです。

taikutsu desu.
I'm bored.


気持ち悪いです。

kimochi warui desu.
That's revolting.


気持ちいいです。

kimochi ii desu.
That feels so good.

 


Karate iPhone app

Have an iPhone or iPod Touch?

If so, please try our Beginners Japanese Phrases and Lessons app..

Click here to view more information in iTunes.

 

Gitaigo & Giongo

Untitled Document

We all have days when we are just plumb tired. You probably all know how to say, 「つかれた。」 But why use tired language to describe being tired? Let's excite things up with two gitaigo (mimesis) action words:


へとへと
heto heto
tired; exhausted


仕事でへとへとです。
shigoto de hetoheto desu.
I'm exhausted from work.

But what if you are VERY tired and へとへと just doesn't cut it? Try ぐったり out for size.


ぐったり
guttari
be dead tired


飛行機で15時間かかったので、帰宅後ベッドにぐったりと倒れこんだ。
hikouki de juugo jikan kakatta node, kitakugo beddo ni guttari to taorekonda.
After returning home from a fifteen hour flight, I crashed in my bed dead tired.

おまけに・・・

And when your dogs are barking, try this saying:


足が棒になる。
ashi ga bou ni naru.
My legs are becoming sticks.

Idioms

一目ぼれ Love at First Sight

Hitomebore 一目ぼれ Love at First Sight

Here is a word you can use every day! Well, if you live in a Meg Ryan movie that is.


一目ぼれ

hitome bore
love at first sight

"one eye," 一目 hitome here means "a glance" or "a look" and ぼれ is from 惚れる horeru and means "fall in love."

Here is our example sentence:


彼は、彼女に一目ぼれして、すぐにプロポーズした。

kare wa, kanojo ni hitomebore shite, sugu ni puropo-zu shita.
Falling in love at first sight, he soon proposed to her.

Using the Phone in Japanese

beginner Japanese vocabulary

Using the Phone in Japanese

電話です。

denwa desu.
It's the phone.

私がとります。

watashi ga torimasu.
I'll get it.

もしもし

moshi moshi
Hello.

おひさしぶりですね。

ohisashiburi desu ne.
It has been a while!

お元気でしたか?

ogenki deshita ka?
How have you been?

さっきはありがとう。

sakki wa arigatou.
Thank you for that (the other day).

(青木さん)に電話してください。

(aoki san) ni denwa shite kudasai.
Please call (Mr./Mrs Aoki)

青木さんは、いらっしゃいますか?

aoki san wa, irasshaimasu ka?
Is Mr. (or Mrs. or Miss...) Aoki there?

お世話になっております。

osewa ni natte orimasu.
Thank you for being helpful.

あしたうちに帰ります。

ashita uchi ni kaerimasu.
(S)he will come home tomorrow.

伝言ありますか?

dengon arimasu ka?
Do you want to leave a message?

ジョンです。

j