Japanese names, male and female?

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Japanese names, male and female?

Post by Nasta » Thu 09.29.2005 3:21 pm

Is there any way for determining if a name is male or female? (Like in English, names with "a" on the end *tend* to be female) Are people named a lot after abstract concepts (Faith) or even just plain words? Anything anyone else can tell me about japanese naming?

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RE: Japanese names, male and female?

Post by Kates » Thu 09.29.2005 7:18 pm

That article doesn't seem to have much about given names.... so, here's what I know:

Names that end in "KO" are usually (always?) female.
I'd say "MI" names are usually female as well. (Yumi, Harumi, Ami...)
Several boys' names end in "ROU" (Ichirou, Tarou...)
Hmm.... "E" names are often female, too. (Chie, Sumie...)
I think boys' names are the ones that end in "JI". (Shinji, Shuji.... -- I can't think of a girl's that ends in "JI"...)

Once you start learning Japanese, it will be pretty easy to tell when a name is male or female... but I don't know if I could explain it. ^^;

Names in Japanese can come from as many different places as any other country, of course. A boy named "Ichirou" could be the first born boy of the family (ichi = one, and rou = boy/son). One of my teachers was named "AKO" (亜子、 亜 = next, 子 = child) because she was the second daughter. Two friends of mine named their new daughter AYUKI (歩希、歩 = walk, 希 = hope, so 'walk towards hope' is the meaning they intended).

Some children are not 'given' kanji with their names. YUKI means "snow" in Japanese (the kanji is 雪), but not all girls named Yuki are given that kanji... so it could be interpreted as not 'meaning' snow... see? ^^; (That sounds so dumb to me right now...)

And some parents probably just can come up with a nice-sounding combination of sounds, even if the word doesn't exist in Japanese already.

.... I hope that makes some interesting sense... >_<

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RE: Japanese names, male and female?

Post by coco » Thu 09.29.2005 10:48 pm

There are some interesting sites about Japanese names too.


日本語検定2級を受ければいいのに…… と思いながら拝読しています。

「ユキ」という女性の名前の場合には 由紀、友紀、由貴などが

男性の場合 漢字二文字で最後が「ユキ」になることが多く
博之 (ひろゆき) 和幸(かずゆき) 知之(ともゆき)などのような

明彦(あきひこ) 一彦(かずひこ) などのように彦(ひこ)で終わる場合は

「み」に関しても、郷ひろみ という男性歌手に代浮ウれるように

最近では カタカナやひらがなを 女の子の名前に使う人も増えてきました。
以前には 「“子”のつく名前の女の子は頭がいい」
という本が出版されて 物議(ぶつぎ)を醸(かも)しました。

Last edited by coco on Fri 09.30.2005 4:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

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RE: Japanese names, male and female?

Post by Nasta » Fri 09.30.2005 3:29 am

Very helpful, thank you for your explanation Kates.. and thank you others for the website links :)

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