Did you know? Japanese uses a lot of “loan word”.

The Japanese language

Gairaigo  “loan word” or “borrowed word”, and indicates a transliteration (or “transvocalization”) into Japanese. 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. Many of these words derive from Portuguese, due to Portugal’s early role in Japanese-Western interaction; Dutch, due to the Netherlands’ relationship with Japan amidst the policy of sakoku during the Edo period; and from French and German, due to France and Germany’s cultural and scientific prominence during Japan’s modernization in the Meiji period. However, most come from English, the dominant world language today. Due to the large number of western concepts imported into Japanese culture during modern times, there are thousands of these English borrowings. These English words are informally referred to as having been “Nipponized”.



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