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In this Issue…

Introduction

ご購入(こうにゅう)ありがとうございます。

Thank you so muchfor your purchase!

In the US, a hundred-dollar bill is often affectionately referred to as a “Benjamin” or “Benny,” named after the renowned Benjamin Franklin, whose face adorns the front of the note. But have you ever wondered what the Japanese call their 10,000 yen bill? It’s known as ゆきち, after the influential figure 福沢諭吉(ふくざわゆきち) who graces its front. Curious about who he is? Wait a month! The October Makoto Issue will feature an essay about him.

But the world of Japanese currency is about to change! Starting next year (2024), the face of 渋沢栄一(しぶさわえいいち) will replace 諭吉 (ゆきち )on the 10,000 yen note. Who is this new figure, and what makes him so special? Turn to our intermediate essay in this issue to unravel the mystery!

Thank you for being part of our learning community! Clay & Yumi

P.S. We are here to help. If you have any language questions, suggestions for improvements, or—gasp!—discover mistakes, please email us at help@thejapanshop.com

P.P.S. The cover says, おすし、食(た)べたいなぁ which means, “I wanna eat sushi.” [The お is a polite honorific; なぁ is a sentence-ending particle expressing longing or desire. The ぁ extends this for emphasis.]

Laughs, Jokes, Riddles, and Puns

銃撃(じゅうげき)されたレーガン大統領(だいとうりょう)が手術(しゅじゅつ)をすることになりました。手術室(しゅじゅつしつ)で医師(いし)たちを見上(みあ)げた大統領(だいとうりょう)はこう言(い)いました。「ここにいる医者(いしゃ)はみんな共和党(きょうわとう)支持者(しじしゃ)だといいんだが・・・。」

President Reagan, who had been shot, was to undergo surgery. Looking up at the doctors in the operating room, the president said, “I hope you are all Republicans.”

Vocabulary:

  • ジョーク a joke
  • 銃撃(じゅうげき)された had been shot [plain past form of 銃撃(じゅうげき)される (be shot; be gunned down; plain passive positive form of 銃撃(じゅうげき)する (to shoot))]
  • レーガン大統領(だいとうりょう) President Reagan [レーガン (Reagan; Ronald Reagan; 40th President of the United States of America and known for his dry humor); 大統領(だいとうりょう) (president (of a nation))]
  • が (marks the subject of the immediate verb phrase)
  • 手術(しゅじゅつ)をする perform an operation; undergo an operation; do an operation
  • ことになりました it turned out that … [polite past form of ことになる (it turns out that …; it has been decided that …); how to use: Verb (casual, non-past) + ことになりました]
  • 手術室(しゅじゅつしつ)で in the operating room [手術室(しゅじゅつしつ) (operating room; operating theatre) ; で (in; indicates the location of action)]
  • 医師(いし)たち doctors [医師(いし) (doctor; physician); たち (pluralizing suffix (especially for people and animals))]
  • を (indicates the direct object of action)
  • 見上(みあ)げた looked up at [plain past form of 見上(みあ)げる (to look up at; to raise one’s eyes)]
  • は (indicates the sentence topic)
  • こう言(い)いました said; said in this way [こう (this; in this way; refers to what the speaker has said); 言(い)いました (said; polite past form of 言(い)う (to say; to utter))]
  • 「」 (quotation marks; “ ”)
  • ここ here; this place
  • に in; at [expresses the location of existence]
  • いる to be (of animate objects); to exist
  • 医者(いしゃ) doctor; physician
  • みんな everyone; everybody; all
  • 共和党(きょうわとう)支持者(しじしゃ) a Republican supporter [共和党(きょうわとう) (Republican Party (United States)); 支持者(しじしゃ) (supporter; adherent)]
  • だといい I hope ~; it would be nice if; I wish [how to use: Noun/な-Adjective + だ + と + いい]
  • んだ (shows emphasis; shows explanation) [casual for のです (shows emphasis; to explain something)]
  • が though [at the end of the sentence, is used to soften the tone of the sentence and implies that you want to say more but you want to see first how your listener reacts]

Japanese Vocabulary

鵜(う)の目(め)・鷹(たか)の目(め)

keen eyes; vigilant; attentive

  Eyes sharp as a bird

鵜(う) is a type of bird with a long neck (cormorant) and 鷹(たか) is a falcon. Both are excellent at hunting prey thus inspiring the “vigilant” meaning.

EXAMPLE SENTENCE:

あの刑事(けいじ)は、犯人(はんにん)の手(て)がかりがないかと鵜(う)の目(め)、鷹(たか)の目(め)で探(さが)し回(まわ)っている。

That detective is combing the scene with a fine-tooth brush to see if any clues were left by the criminal.

VOCABULARY:

  • あの刑事(けいじ) that detective [あの (that; those; the); 刑事(けいじ) ((police) detective)]
  • は (topic marking particle)
  • 犯人(はんにん) criminal; guilty one; offender; culprit
  • 手(て)がかり clue; lead [手(て) (hand) + がかり (hold→hand hold→“starting point” where one can start unraveling things to find more clues)]
  • (が)ないか (to see) if there are any (clues) or not [が (marks the subject of the immediate verb phrase) + ない (not; plain negative form of ある (to be; to exist)) + か (question marker); ~(が)ない (~is/are not there; don’t have~)]
  • と (quotation marker) [it is quoting 犯人(はんにん)の手(て)がかりがないか]
  • 鵜(う)の目(め)、鷹(たか)の目(め) vigilant; attentive [literally, “eyes of cormorant, eyes of falcon”; 鵜(う) (cormorant); の (possession marker (‘s; of)) ;目(め) (eye); 鷹(たか) (falcon; hawk)]
  • で with; through [shows the means or tool used to perform an action]
  • 探(さが)し回(まわ)っている looking around; searching around [探(さが)し (ます-stem form of 探(さが)す (to search; to look for) which is used to connect to the next verb 回(まわ)っている); 回(まわ)って (て-form of 回(まわ)る (to go around)); (~て)いる (indicates continuing action (~ing); how to use: Verb て-form + いる)]

Prefecture Spotlight

Hokkaido 北海道(ほっかいどう)

Japanese: 北海道 hokkaidō 

Capital: 札幌 Sapporo  

Population: 5,507,456 (October 1, 2010)

DID YOU KNOW?

Like Okinawa, Hokkaido is both a prefecture and a region. It is the second largest island in Japan and the most northern. It is a “dō” and not “ken.”

PLACES TO SEE: 

· Sapporo —the largest city (and capital) of Hokkaido.

· Asahikawa —the second largest city and officially the coldest city in Japan.

· Matsumae Castle—also known as Fukuyama Castle, it is famous for having over 10,000 cherry blossom trees.

FAMOUS FOR:

· Farms—Hokkaido produces more agricultural products than any other prefecture.

· Sapporo beer—originally from Sapporo, Hokkaido, the world headquarters is now in Tokyo.

· Wakkanai—the northernmost city in Japan. The Russian island Sakhalin can be seen on a clear day.

語源 Etymology

四六時中(しろくじちゅう)

Shirokujichuu

(こし)

)

「四六時中(しろくじちゅう)」とは、「いつも、一日中(いちにちじゅう)、いつでも」という意味(いみ)です。4(よん)x(かける)6(ろく)は24(にじゅうよん)で24(にじゅうよ)時間(じかん)を表(あらわ)しています。もともと江戸時代(えどじだい)までは「二六時中(にろくじちゅう)」と言(い)っていましたが、明治時代(めいじじだい)になって24(にじゅうよ)時間制(じかんせい)が導入(どうにゅう)されると、「四六時中(しろくじちゅう)」と言(い)う言(い)い方(かた)に変(か)わりました。江戸時代(えどじだい)までは1(いち)日(にち)を12(じゅうに)刻(こく)で区切(くぎ)っていました。1(いっ)刻(こく)は約(やく)2(に)時間(じかん)です。

“四(し)六(ろく)時(じ)中(ちゅう)” means “always, all day, anytime.” The 4 (四(よん)) x 6 (六(ろく)) equals 24, which represents 24 hours. Originally, up until the Edo period, it was called “二(に)六(ろく)時(じ)中(ちゅう) (Two-Six All the Time),” but with the introduction of the 24-hour system in the Meiji period, it changed to “四(し)六(ろく)時(じ)中(ちゅう).” Until the Edo period, one day was divided into 12 刻(こく), with one “koku” being approximately 2 hours.

Vocabulary

  • 語源(ごげん) etymology; origin of a word
  • 「」(quotation marks; “ ”)
  • 四六時中(しろくじちゅう) around the clock; day and night [四(し) (four; 4); 六(ろく) (six; 6); 時(じ) (hour; o’clock); 中(ちゅう) (within (a period); throughout)]
  • とは (indicates the word or phrase being defined)
  • いつも always; all the time; at all times
  • 一日中(いちにちじゅう) all day long; all the day; throughout the day
  • いつでも always; all the time; at all times
  • という that; that says [is used to define, describe, and generally just talk about the thing itself; と (quotation marker); いう (to say; to declare)]
  • 意味(いみ) meaning; significance; sense
  • です be; is
  • 4(よん)x(かける)6(ろく)は24(にじゅうよん)で 4 x 6 equals 24 [で is the て-form of です (be; is) which is used to connect to the next phrase]
  • 24(にじゅうよ)時間(じかん)を表(あらわ)しています represent 24 hours [24(にじゅうよ)時間(じかん) (24 hours); を (indicates the direct object of action); 表(あらわ)しています (represent; ~ています form of 表(あらわ)す (to represent; to signify; to stand for) which is used to describe the actual state of the subject; how to use: Verb て-form + います)]
  • もともと originally; from the start; from the beginning
  • 江戸時代(えどじだい)までは up until the Edo period [江戸時代(えどじだい) (Edo period (1603-1868)); まで (until (a time); till; to; up to); は (adds emphasis)]
  • 「二六時中(にろくじちゅう)」“二六時中(にろくじちゅう) (Two-Six All the Time)” [「」 (quotation marks; “ ”); 二六時中(にろくじちゅう) (Two-Six All the Time; night and day; all the time; 二(に) (two; 2); 六(ろく) (six; 6))]   
  • 「二六時中(にろくじちゅう)」と言(い)っていました (it) was called “二六時中(にろくじちゅう) (Two-Six All the Time)” [「二六時中(にろくじちゅう)」(“二六時中(にろくじちゅう) (Two-Six All the Time)”); と (quotation marker); 言(い)っていました (was called; ~ていました form of 言(い)う (to name; to call) which places focus on the duration of a past action; how to form: Verb て-form + いました)]    
  • が but; however
  • 明治時代(めいじじだい) Meiji period (1868-1912)
  • になって turned [is a natural change; に (expresses the result of change); なって (て-form of なる (to become; to get; to grow; to turn) which is used to connect to the next phrase)]
  • 24(にじゅうよ)時間制(じかんせい)が the 24-hour system [24(にじゅうよ)時間制(じかんせい) (24-hour system); が (marks the subject of the immediate verb phrase)]
  • 導入(どうにゅう)される be introduced [plain passive positive form of 導入(どうにゅう)する (to introduce; to adopt)]
  • と when; if [is placed after a verb (plain form) to form a conditional]
  • と言(い)う called; named; that says; that
  • 言(い)い方(かた) way of saying (something); way of putting it; wording; phrasing
  • に変(か)わりました changed to [に (to; expresses the result of change); 変(か)わりました (changed; polite past form of 変(か)わる (to change; to be transformed; to be altered))]
  • 1(いち)日(にち)を12(じゅうに)刻(こく)で区切(くぎ)っていました one day was divided into 12 koku [1(いち)日(にち) (one day); を (indicates the direct object of action); 12(じゅうに)刻(こく) (12 koku; 刻(こく) (period of time (usually a period of approximately two hours corresponding to one of the signs of the Chinese zodiac))); で (into; by); 区切(くぎ)っていました (was divided; ~ていました (polite past form of ~ている (is used to describe the actual state of the subject)) form of 区切(くぎ)る (to divide; to separate; to partition))]
  • 1(いっ)刻(こく)は one koku [刻(こく) (period of time); は (indicates the sentence topic)]
  • 約(やく) approximately; about
  • 2(に)時間(じかん) 2 hours
  • です be; is

Anime / Manga Phrases

「嘘(うそ)はとびきりの愛(あい)なんだよ。」

星野(ほしの)アイのセリフ

アニメ「推(お)しの子(こ)」より

“Lies are the greatest form of love!”

Line of Hoshino Ai

From the anime “Oshi no Ko (My Favorite Idol)”

VOCABULARY

  • 「」(quotation marks; “ ”)
  •  嘘(うそ) lie; fib; falsehood; untruth
  • は (indicates the sentence topic)
  • とびきり best; extra-fine; superfine; unequalled
  • の of; ‘s [modifier]
  • 愛(あい) love; affection; care
  • なんだ (shows emphasis) [how to use: Noun/な-Adjective + な + んだ; んだ is casual for のです (explanatory ender; shows emphasis) which is used in spoken Japanese and informal situation]
  • よ (sentence ender showing emphasis and certainty)
  • 星野(ほしの)アイのセリフ line of Hoshino Ai [星野(ほしの)アイ (Hoshino Ai); の (of; ‘s; modifier); セリフ (one’s lines; speech; words)]
  • アニメ animation; animated film; animated cartoon; anime
  • 推(お)しの子(こ) Oshi no Ko; My Favorite Idol; Their Idol’s Children
  • より from

Haiku

Matsuo Bashou 松尾芭蕉(まつおばしょう)

この道(みち)や 行(い)く人(ひと)なしに 秋(あき)の暮(く)れ

On this road | with no one passing by | Autumn dusk

EXPLANATION

遠(とお)くに続(つづ)くこの道(みち)は、誰(だれ)も通(とお)るものがなく、寂(さび)しく秋(あき)の日(ひ)が暮(く)れていきます。私(わたし)が続(つづ)けている俳諧(はいかい)の道(みち)もこのようなものかもしれません。

This road that stretches into the distance, with no one passing by, is desolately engulfed by the setting of an autumn sun. The path I am pursuing in Haikai may be like this.

VOCABULARY

  • この this
  • 道(みち) road; path
  • や (emphasizes the preceding word) [it’s a kireji (cutting word) which indicates a pause, both rhythmically and grammatically, and may add an emotional flavor to the word/phrase preceding it] 
  • 行(い)く to walk along (e.g. a road); to go
  • 人(ひと) person; people; human beings
  • なしに without 
  • 秋(あき)の暮(く)れ autumn dusk [秋(あき) (autumn; fall); の (of; modifier); 暮(く)れ (dusk; sunset; nightfall)]
  • 遠(とお)くに into the distance [遠(とお)く (far away; distant place; a (great) distance); に (into)]
  • 続(つづ)く to continue; to go on
  • は (indicates the sentence topic)
  • 誰(だれ)も通(とお)るものがなく with no one passing by [誰(だれ)も (no one; nobody); 通(とお)る (to pass by; to use (a road); to go by); もの (person); が (marks the subject of the immediate verb phrase); なく (non-existent; not being (there); continuative form of ない (plain negative form of ある (to be; to exist)))]
  • 寂(さび)しく desolately; lonelily [adverbial form of 寂(さび)しい (lonely; lonesome; solitary; desolate); how to form: drop the ending い of い-adjectives (exception: いい (good) → よく) then replace it with く]
  • 秋(あき)の日(ひ)が autumn sun [秋(あき) (autumn; fall); の (of; modifier); 日(ひ) (sun); が (marks the subject of the immediate verb phrase)]
  • 暮(く)れていきます setting (of an autumn sun); darken [from 暮(く)れる (to get dark; to grow dark); ~ていきます is the polite form of ~ていく (relates to the time flow from speaker’s point of view, focusing on how things have been changing or will change); how to use: Verb て-form + いきます]
  • 私(わたし) me; I
  • 続(つづ)けている pursuing; is continuing [~ている form of 続(つづ)ける (to continue; to keep up; to keep on; to pursue) which is used to describe a continuous action; how to use: Verb て-form + いる]
  • 俳諧(はいかい)の道(みち)も the path in Haikai [俳諧(はいかい) (haikai (collective name for haiku, haibun, haiga, senryū, etc.)); の (of; in; modifier); 道(みち) (path; road); も (emphasizes the preceding word)]
  • このような like this [この (this); ような (like; as; similar to ~)]
  • もの (is used to emphasize emotion; indicates a general tendency)
  • かもしれません might; perhaps; may be; possibly
  • 松尾芭蕉(まつおばしょう) Matsuo Bashou (1644-1694) [He was the most famous poet of the Edo period in Japan. He is recognized as the greatest master of haiku. His mastery of haiku and his wanderings around Japan are attested by the many monuments with his poems.]

Kanji Spotlight

Learning Kanji one Character at a Time

JLPT N5 Kanji

  • On: カン; ケン        
  • Kun: あいだ; ま                
  • Meaning: interval; space; room

Hint: The 門 is the kanji that means “gate.” So, in the interval of the gate there is a sun.

Examples:

  • 時間(じかん) time
  • 昼間(ひるま) daytime
  • 居間(いま) living room

時間(じかん)がありますか?

Do you have some spare time?

VOCABULARY:

  • 時間(じかん) time                                                               
  • (が)あります there is (inanimate things) [how to use: Noun + (が)あります]
  • か (question marker)

Grammar Time

~とき

ABOUT:   

とき by itself means “time,” but when used with a verb or adjective, it indicates a time when something happens or happened. “The time when…” or “when.”

HOW TO USE:

■ Add to the plain form of a past or non-past verb.

■ Add to the plain form of a past or non-past adjective.

EXAMPLES:

あれは、若(わか)いときの写真(しゃしん)です。    

That is a photo from when (I) was young.

[that | as for | young-time | ‘s | photograph]

食(た)べるときは、いつもテレビを見(み)ます。    

When eating, (I) always watch TV.

[eating | time | as for | always | TV | watch]

VOCABULARY

  • あれ that; that thing [is used for things that are far from both the speaker and the listener]
  • は (indicates the sentence topic)
  • 若(わか)い young; youthful
  • とき time; hour; moment [functions like “when” in English to create a time clause; how to use: い-adjective + とき]
  • の ’s [modifier]
  • 写真(しゃしん) photograph; photo; picture; snapshot; snap
  • です be; is
  • 食(た)べる to eat
  • ときは when [とき (time; when; at this time; the time when…; how to use: Verb (casual form) + とき); は (adds emphasis)]
  • いつも always; all the time; at all times
  • テレビ television; TV
  • を (indicates the direct object of action)
  • 見(み)ます to see; to look; to watch; to view [~ます is the polite form of Japanese verbs]
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