地震 雷 火事 親父

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Cultural Literacy: Household & Family: 地震 雷 火事 親父 ---

地震 雷 火事 親父
jishin kaminari kaji oyaji
Earthquake, thunder, fire, parents (father)

This phrase implies parents (usually the father) are as scary as natural disasters.

According to this site[1], 「地震 雷 火事 親父」 was originally 「地震 雷 火事 山嵐」. The 「山嵐」 meaning 'mountain storm' or 'typhoon' was pronounced 「やまじ」. Either intentionally or by accident it became 「おやじ」

This makes sense since we are missing 'water' as a scary thing. A typhoon would round out the list nicely.

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