NAVIGATING and USING the CLASSICAL JAPANESE PORTAL ("CJP")
Including Abbreviations, defined
(This page is browser-searchable.)
Links from the home page:
- This website's home page contains four main links:
Why Classical Japanese? Why you might enjoy -- and benefit from -- learning classical Japanese.
Selections. Basic information about the work that is the source of this site's text passages; each of these opens onto the cover page for that "book" (as we'll call them). Each book's cover's red ribbon offers a summary characterization of the work.
- The Learning Tools link brought you to this page--and takes you (below) to a list of terms, concepts and abbreviations used in explaining the language of the text samples in this site. It's searchable with your web browser's search function.
- Inside each book, a Table of Contents lists the passages selected from that work, and presents a link to each page of a selection. Each of these links gives a brief summary of grammatical items of note that are deployed there.
- Why Classical Japanese? Why you might enjoy -- and benefit from -- learning classical Japanese.
- When you've clicked a link in a book's ToC, you land on that link's corresponding two-page spread, with commentary and analysis on the left page and the text itself on the right (details under Interactive Text and Tools for Opening Up the Text, below). Each two-page spread has a single number, which appears in the lower right corner of the right-hand page. The red arrow tabs on the edges of the open-book display are for flipping forward or back.
- Just underneath each two-page spread, laid out left-to-right, are thumbnail summaries of each two-page spread in the book. The thumbnails also list the main grammatical topics that come up in each numbered two-page spread.
- A book's pages of Japanese text can be accessed in three modes: Word Mode, Phrase Mode, and Passage Mode. Select your mode by clicking on the mode button, which is above the left side of each open-book web page. The scope of the commentary and audio on the lefthand page will differ with the mode you've selected.
Word Mode provides access to instructional material about Dictionary link opens onto a short dictionary entry, and the Grammar link opens onto selected points about the word's composition, word class, or use, etc. Beneath the Grammar link are three buttons for jumping to the Hear button, which plays audio of the word's classical (not necessarily historical) pronunciation. When a new link is clicked, the commentary from the previously selected link is replaced with the new commentary.
Phrase Mode accesses instructional material about Breakdowns of each phrase's components, commentary on its
- Passage Mode is for reading and/or listening to an entire passage. The Japanese text's facing page presents an English translation of the passage, and beneath the translated text, the audio for each passage is controlled with the play/pause button and/or slider bar. When listening to the audio, when you reach the end of the text on that page, note the number in the time counter; you will need to slide to this point when you resume the audio for the following page. That is, when you turn a text page (clicking the red arrow on its right edge), the audio you've been hearing will stop, and must be restarted for the next page from that number on the time counter.
Interactive Text and Tools for Opening Up the Text
--> When you click on any item in the Table of Contents, a two-page spread opens:
- The right page is clickable, interactive text; the left page accesses tools for reading the text page, as follows:
- In Word viewing mode: Clicking on a word in the text activates its associated tools in the left page: a DIctionary entry; Grammar comments (when relevant); and (bottom of the left page) Hear, which plays audio for that word.
- In Phrase viewing mode: Each sentence in the text is segmented into clickable phrases. Clicking on a phrase activates tools that target it in the left-hand page. These are: Breakdown, which identifies the phrase's parts; Grammar notes on structure, usage and meaning; a Translation; and (bottom of page) Hear, which plays audio for that phrase, contextualized in its sentence.
- The contents of the left-hand pages add up to a starter kit of analytic tools for opening up and exploring the texts and the language used there. These tools should help prepare you to move on to studying more of these same works and others on your own, with dictionaries, translations, and other reference works of your choosing.
The romanized transcription used in these notes follows kana spelling of the time, so in a variety of syllables the accepted classical pronunciation cannot be had by simply reading with today's sound values. For both, you need to know the old kana spelling (旧仮名遣い kyuu kanazukai).
In the left-hand pages, an initial capital letter in a term (e.g. 'Adjectival Noun') indicates that the word is being used in the specific sense described here, which may differ from its "everyday" meaning.
An upper-case letter is also used to indicate that we're focusing on a particular inflected form of an inflecting word--a particular inflected form of a verb, adjective or copula. For example arE indicates that the comment applies to just this, the presupposing infinitive ("exclamative" form in Frellesvig 2010) of the verb ari 'be'. When the discussion is not about a particular inflected form, this capitalization is missing. So, for example, an all-lower-case ari "be" refers simply to that verb per se, and an all lower-case keri refers simply to that auxiliary as such.
Asterisks refer to non-attested but hypothesized or reconstructed forms. "X < Y" means "X derives from Y," i.e. Y in some way formed the basis for the newer item X.
The pronunciations that you'll learn to associate with these ancient kana spellings will be those of classical Japanese, i.e. how they're conventionally pronounced as introduced today in school in Japan. These pronunciations do not necessarily reflect these syllables' actual sound values in the Heian period. For reconstructed actual pronunciations, see, for example, Bjarke Frellesvig's A History of the Japanese Language (Cambridge University Press, 2010).
Also: cJ = "classical Japanese", mJ ="modern Japanese", OJ = "Old Japanese" (Nara Period), EMJ "Early Middle Japanese" (Heian Period). Other abbreviations will be introduced as we go along. For further information on abbreviations and terms/concepts, please keep reading.
Abbreviations for terms/concepts more specific to Japanese
Abbreviations (romanized) for Japanese grammatical terms
The concepts, categories, and terms below are used in the instructional materials presented in the Word and Phrase modes' notes for studying the text passages.
| A | Adjective (形容詞
| AN | Adjectival Noun. Refers to the initial, non-copula portion of 形容動詞 keiyoodoosi "descriptive verbs", such as the siduka of 静かなり daudau of 堂々たり, but also nouns such as aka "red", awo "blue(green)", haya "quick(ly)", kuro "black", etc. (which form the roots of the corresponding 形容詞 keiyoosi "[inflecting] adjectives").
| Aux | Auxiliary (助動詞 zyodoosi "auxiliary verb")
| Cont | Continuative (= perfect, progressive, or resultative) Aux tari, (a) ri
| Cop | Copula
| DI | Doubted Identity, expressed by focus (kakari) particle ka
| EEF | Externally Established Fact, or evidential present, past, or perfect expressed with Aux keri
| EIF | Extended Inclusive Focus sahe
| EF | Established Fact, or evidential past and perfect expressed with Aux ki
| EndoPf | Endoactive Perfective Aux intransitive perfective
| ExoPf | Exoactive Perfective Aux transitive perfective
| ID | Identifying Focus, expressed by focus (kakari) particle zo
| IF | Inclusive Focus, expressed by focus (kakari) particle mo
| IZ | Izen-kei, the 'realis' inflected form
| Loc | Locative, i.e. indicating location
| MR | Meirei-kei, the 'imperative' inflected form
| MZ | Mizen-kei, the 'irrealis' inflected form
| N | Nominal, Noun
| P | Predicator, i.e. an A, V, or N+Cop (plus any optional Auxiliaries)
| Pt | Particle
| QP | Quantifying Particle, e.g. ha (i.e. nomi "only", etc.
| RF | Restrictive Focus, expressed by focus (kakari) particle ha
| RT | Rentai-kei, the 'adnominal' inflected form
| RY | Ren'yoo-kei, the 'predicator-linking' inflected form
| SS | Syuusi-kei, the 'conclusive' inflected form
| V | Verb
| Vi | Verb, intransitive, i.e. intransitive verb
| Vst | Verb, stative (= expresses a condition, not something that happens)
| Vt | Verb, transitive
Verb ("V") classes (Japanese abbreviations in parentheses)
| 1D | itidan (一段) "monograde"
| K2 | kami nidan (上二段) "upper biggrade"
| S2 | simo nidan (下二段) "lower bigrade"
| 4D | yodan (四段) "quadrigrade"
| KH | ka-hen (カ変) = ka-gyoo henkaku カ行変格 "ka-column irregular"
| NH | na-hen (ナ変) = na-gyoo henkaku ナ行変格
| RH | ra-hen (ラ変) = ra-gyoo henkaku ラ行変格
| SH | sa-hen (サ変) = sa-gyoo henkaku サ行変格
Adjective ("A") classes
| ku | (ク) ＝ ku-katuyoo ク活用
| siku | (シク) ＝ siku-katuyoo シク活用
Abbreviations for Japanese part-of-speech terms and terms commonly used in 古語辞典 kogo ziten 'dictionaries of early Japanese':
| 名 | 名詞 meisi "noun"
| 動 | 動詞 doosi "verb"
| 自動 | 自動詞 zidoosi "intransitive verb"
| 他動 | 他動詞 tadoosi "transitive verb"
| 形 | 形容詞 keiyoosi "adjective"
| 形動 | 形容動詞 keiyoodoosi "adjectival verb"
| 助動 | 助動詞 zyodoosi "auxiliary verb"
| 補助動 | 補助動詞 hozyodoosi "supplementary auxiliary verb"
| 接尾 | 接尾語 setubigo "suffix"
| 助 | 助詞 zyosi "particle"
| 接助 | 接続助詞 setuzoku zyosi "conjunctive particle"
Abbreviations for texts (selected literary works) in Japanese
| Gm | Genji monogatari "The Tale of Genji"
| Im | Ise monogatari "Tales of Ise"
| Kks | Kokin waka shū/Kokin shū "Collection of poetry old and new"
| Km | Konjaku monogatari shū "Collection of tales of things now past"
| Kn | Kagero nikki "The Gossamer Diary"
| Mys | Man'yōshū "Collection of 10,000 leaves"
| Om | Ochikubo monogatari "The Tale of Lady Ochikubo"
| Tm | Taketori monogatari "Tale of the Bamboo Cutter"
| Tn | Tosa nikki "Tosa Diary"
Basic Terms and Concepts: also explained on first occurrence in left-hand pages.
| Complementizer | A marker of information that complements, or supplements, what the governing verb expresses. Most commonly refers to particle
| Compound | a word with more than one part
| compound N(oun) | a N typically derived from more than one source word, the second of which is a N.
| compound V(erb) | a V typically derived from more than one source word, the second of which is a V.
| Deictic time words | Words that refer to a time in a way that is dependent on, or relative to, the speaker's here-and-now, e.g. ima "now", kehu "today", etc.
| Deixis | Referring ("pointing") to some entity that the speaker regards as present in the immediate communicative context, or as accessible through/from it.
| Derivation, derived from | Created from. For example, "The auxiliary keri is derived from ki + ari." Or, "Particle ni was derived from the short RY of the copula niRY "being". The formulas "X < Y" and "Y > X" are often read as "X is/was derived from Y."
| Governing | X governs Y if it stands in a higher or inclusive ("superordinate") structural relation to Y, i.e. X applies to Y, or X applies over Y. In Japanese, auxiliaries govern the verbs (and other auxiliaries) that they follow; particles govern the phrases they follow or attach to.
| Nominal | A noun, a noun phrase (multiword), or a nominalized clause.
| Nominalization | Treating a structure that does not normally function as a nominal (e.g. a verb-predicated clause) as a nominal.
| Noun | Also called "lexical noun," a single, non-inflecting word that is routinely used in roles such as subject, object, etc., and in reference to time-stable entities such as people, objects, locations, etc.
| Particle | A word that invariably occurs following the word it applies to. Particles typically relate what they mark to some other element higher up in their phrase's or clause's structure e.g., in 都に帰る miyako ni kaheru "returns to the capital", Loc particle ni relates miyako "capital" to kaheru "returns", as the goal in that act of movement.
| Case particle (格助詞) | These mediate semantic relations within a phrase, clause or sentence by marking something as part of the "who did what, when and where," such as "possessor" (genitive case), "goal" (locative), scope ("accusative" wo), etc.
| Focus particles | These particles indicate an information-related perspective vis-a-vis the predicator (verb, adjective). There are two types, one more concerned with identifying, the other, with quantifying (adding/including, delimiting/restricting, etc.).
| Identity-focused focus particles | Identity-relevant focus particles are strongly identifying (ka, zo, koso), tentative (namu), and weakly identifying (ya). These are called 係助詞 kakari zyosi for their use in marking the 係 kakari, or focused component in the kakari-musubi construction. For example, ka and zo functioned in quasi-copular ways, asserting an identification ( Kore zo. "It's this one."), seeking one ( idure ka "which one is it", or with tare zo "who is it?"). Each is further explained in the texts' notes.
| Quantificational focus particles | e.g. restricted focus ha (modern wa), inclusive focus mo, nomi "only", sahe "even", etc. These focus particles are concerned with the extent to which the following predicator phrase's content applies or holds true. Unlike the identifying focus particles, none of these required the following predicator phrase to be marked as presupposed with RT or IZ inflection.
| Predicate | Represents a situation (= act, event, condition) with its participants (agent/actor, undergoer, etc.) and other details (goal, means, manner, etc.). Note that "Predicate" covers both the predicator (verb, adjective, copula) and its "satellites" (e.g. scope, goal, etc.).
| Predicator | A 用言 yoogen, i.e. inflecting verb, adjective or copula, including auxiliaries (助動詞).
| Suffix | A meaningful dependent element (not a word in its own right) that is attached at the end of another word, creating a new meaning and/or function.