Browsing the blog archives for November, 2009

Letter or Character

ji, aza A letter, number, symbol, or character you write is ji 字 or moji in Japanese. A pictorial symbol is emoji. An emoticon is called kaomoji. The kao of kaomoji is a face. One’s last name is myōji. Here in this blog, we are putting the number of strokes. Strokes or the structure of […]


momo, tō Momo is a peach. The color pink is momoiro. Tōgen or tōgenkyō is a utopia. The origin of the word is in China. And it sounds a little bit classical. Draw the left-hand side of the character first. Draw the horizontal stroke from the left. Draw the vertical line from the top to […]


beni, kurenai, kō, ku The color crimson is beniiro or kurenai. A lipstick is kuchibeni. A lipstick brush is benifude. Fude is a brush. Red pickled ginger is called benishōga. It is sometimes served as a relish.   Kōcha is English tea. Kōhaku is red and white. It is a symbol of happy events. Kōhaku […]


gin The color silver is gin. The gin of ginkgo is this character. The original word is ginkyō and it was mistakenly written as ginkgo before it became an English word. We call it ichō. Ginga is a galaxy. Ga is a big river. Ginkō is a bank. Kō means a store.   Start to […]


sora, a-ku, su-ku, a-keru, muna-shii, kara, kū Sora is sky. Sorairo is sky blue. Kūki is air. Aozora is blue sky. Akizora is an autumnal sky. Samuzora is a wintry sky. Emptiness is expressed by the character. Kara or karappo is empty. If you are in the state muna-shii, you feel empty. Kūkō is an […]

Brown or Tea

cha, sa Ocha is tea. Cha is either tea or the color brown. Kogecha is dark brown color. Koge means burning. Maccha (matsu and cha) is powdered green tea. Matsu means powdering. Mugicha is barley tea. Mugi is barley. Kobayashi Issa is a Japanese poet who is famous for his haiku. The last character of […]

Gold, Metal or Money

kane, kana, kin, gon Kane is money. It sounds blatant. Say okane to make it sound polite. O is a polite suffix. Kinsen is also money. Sen means money, too. Kingaku is a certain amount of money. Gaku means an amount. Kinko is a safety box. Ko is a box you store things. One of […]


ki, ō, kō The color yellow is kiiro or kiiroi. Kōsa is yellow sand. Sa means sand. Wind-blown yellow sand from China sometimes reaches Japan. Here is the drawing order of strokes. Draw the horizontal stroke on the top from the left to the right. Draw the left vertical stroke crossing the horizontal stroke. Draw […]


hai, kai The color gray is haiiro. Ash is hai. In Japan, corpses are burned to ashes. A euphemism for dying is to become ashes, that is, hai ni naru. There are some compounds including this character. Most of them are not familiar to ordinary Japanese like me. I think they are obsolete. Draw the […]


kuro, kuro-i, koku The color black is kuro, kuroiro, or kuro-i. It is considered black food is healthy. Kurogoma (black sesame), kurozatō or kokutō (dark brown sugar), kurozu (black vinegar), kuromame (black soybeans), and kuromai (black rice). I would like to believe that kurobīru (black beer or dark beer) and kuromitsu (black molasses) are also […]