November 11, 2020
Featured languages

Countries and Language Names in Japanese

In English we say “Japanese” and “Spanish,” but not “Germanese” or “Americanish.” In Japanese, saying language names is, in some ways, easier. In this article, we'll learn not only the names of countries, but the names of languages and the names of the citizens of those countries.

In many case, here's how to get the names of languages and people:

  • Language names: [COUNTRY] + 語 go: 日本 nihon (Japan) | 日本語 nihongo (Japanese language)
  • People names: [COUNTRY] + 人 jin: 日本 nihon (Japan) | 日本人 nihonjin (Japanese person)

Let's look at a few regular examples:

Regular Examples

日本 nihon Japan
日本語 nihongo Japanese
日本人 nihonjin Japanese person

スペイン supein Spain
スペイン語 supeingo Spainish
スペイン人 supain jin Spanish person

フランス furansu France
フランス語 furansugo French
フランス人 furansujin French person

ドイツ doitsu Germany
ドイツ語 doitsugo German (language)
ドイツ人 doitsujin German person

ロシア roshia Russia
ロシア語 roshiago Russian (language)
ロシア人 roshiajin Russian person

イタリア itaria Italy
イタリア語 itariago Italian
イタリア人 itariajin Italian person

韓国 kankoku (South) Korea
韓国語 kankokugo Korean
韓国人 kankokujin Korean person

中国 chuugoku China
中国語 chuugokugo Chinese (language)
中国人 chuugokujin Chinese person


Irregular Examples

The nationality stays the same. Just add 人 jin after the country's name.

英語 eigo English is used in:
イギリス igirisu England
アメリカ amerika America
カナダ kanada Canada
オーストラリア o-sutoraria Australia
ニュージーランド nyu- ji-rando New Zealand

ヘブライ語 heburaigo Hebrew or ヘブル語 heburugo Hebrew is used in:
イスラエル israeru Israel

ヒンディー語 hindi- Hindi is used in:
インド indo India

This, of course, is not a full list. Feel free to add other countries in the comments below.

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