Hentaigana
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Hentaigana
Hentaigana
?
?
itaigana (?)[1]
Type
LanguagesJapanese and Okinawan
Time period
c. 800 - 1900 CE; minor use at present
Parent systems
Sister systems
Katakana, Hiragana
DirectionLeft-to-right
ISO 15924Hira, 410
Unicode alias
Hiragana

In the Japanese writing system, hentaigana (?, , Japanese pronunciation: [hentai?ana] or [henta?i?ana], lit. "variant kana")[a] are obsolete or nonstandard hiragana. They include both stylistic variants of current hiragana and distinct alternative hiragana characters. Today, with a few exceptions, there is only one hiragana for each of the fifty consonant-vowel sequences (moras) in Japanese. However, traditionally there were generally several more-or-less interchangeable hiragana for each. A 1900 script reform[b] ordained that only one selected character be used for each mora, with the rest deemed hentaigana. Although not normally used in publication, hentaigana are still used in shop signs and brand names to create a traditional or antiquated air.

Hiragana originate in man'y?gana, a system where kanji were used to write sounds without regard to their meaning. There was more than one kanji that could be used equivalently for each syllable (at the time, a syllable was a mora). Over time the man'y?gana was reduced to a cursive form, the hiragana. Many hentaigana derive from different kanji from the ones for the now-standard hiragana, but some are the result of different styles of cursive writing. As hentaigana have derived from man'y?gana, there are hundreds of different hentaigana used to represent only 90 moras of the Japanese language.

On the other hand, katakana do not have hentaigana. Katakana's choices of man'y?gana segments had stabilized early on and established - with few exceptions - an unambiguous phonemic orthography (one symbol per sound) long before the 1900 script regularization.[3]

Standardized hentaigana

Prior to the proposal which led to the inclusion of hentaigana in Unicode 10.0, they were already Standardized into a list by Mojikiban, part of the Japanese Information-technology Promotion Agency (IPA).[4]

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Hiragana WU 2.png
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To view hentaigana, special fonts need to be installed that support Hentaigana such as

Sources of hentaigana

Hentaigana are adapted from the reduced and cursive forms of the following man'y?gana (kanji) characters.[7] Source characters for the kana are not repeated below for hentaigana even when there are alternative glyphs; some uncertain.

Kanji origins of kana
a i u e o
Hira Kata Hentai Hira Kata Hentai Hira Kata Hentai Hira Kata Hentai Hira Kata Hentai
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
K ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
S ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?(?) ?
T ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
N ? ? ? ? ?(?) ? ?
H ? ? ? ? ? ?
M ? ? ? ? ? ? ?(?) ? ?
Y ? ? - ? - ?(?) ?
R ? ? ? ? ? ?(?) ?
W ? ? ? ? - ? ? ?

In Unicode

286 hentaigana characters are included in the Unicode Standard in the Kana Supplement and Kana Extended-A blocks. One character was added to Unicode version 6.0 in 2010, ? (U+1B001 HIRAGANA LETTER ARCHAIC YE which has the formal alias HENTAIGANA LETTER E-1), and the remaining 285 hentaigana characters were added in Unicode version 10.0 in June 2017.[8]

The Unicode block for Kana Supplement is U+1B000–U+1B0FF:

Kana Supplement[1]
Official Unicode Consortium code chart (PDF)
  0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 A B C D E F
U+1B00x 𛀀 𛀁 𛀂 𛀃 𛀄 𛀅 𛀆 𛀇 𛀈 𛀉 𛀊 𛀋 𛀌 𛀍 𛀎 𛀏
U+1B01x 𛀐 𛀑 𛀒 𛀓 𛀔 𛀕 𛀖 𛀗 𛀘 𛀙 𛀚 𛀛 𛀜 𛀝 𛀞 𛀟
U+1B02x 𛀠 𛀡 𛀢 𛀣 𛀤 𛀥 𛀦 𛀧 𛀨 𛀩 𛀪 𛀫 𛀬 𛀭 𛀮 𛀯
U+1B03x 𛀰 𛀱 𛀲 𛀳 𛀴 𛀵 𛀶 𛀷 𛀸 𛀹 𛀺 𛀻 𛀼 𛀽 𛀾 𛀿
U+1B04x 𛁀 𛁁 𛁂 𛁃 𛁄 𛁅 𛁆 𛁇 𛁈 𛁉 𛁊 𛁋 𛁌 𛁍 𛁎 𛁏
U+1B05x 𛁐 𛁑 𛁒 𛁓 𛁔 𛁕 𛁖 𛁗 𛁘 𛁙 𛁚 𛁛 𛁜 𛁝 𛁞 𛁟
U+1B06x 𛁠 𛁡 𛁢 𛁣 𛁤 𛁥 𛁦 𛁧 𛁨 𛁩 𛁪 𛁫 𛁬 𛁭 𛁮 𛁯
U+1B07x 𛁰 𛁱 𛁲 𛁳 𛁴 𛁵 𛁶 𛁷 𛁸 𛁹 𛁺 𛁻 𛁼 𛁽 𛁾 𛁿
U+1B08x 𛂀 𛂁 𛂂 𛂃 𛂄 𛂅 𛂆 𛂇 𛂈 𛂉 𛂊 𛂋 𛂌 𛂍 𛂎 𛂏
U+1B09x 𛂐 𛂑 𛂒 𛂓 𛂔 𛂕 𛂖 𛂗 𛂘 𛂙 𛂚 𛂛 𛂜 𛂝 𛂞 𛂟
U+1B0Ax 𛂠 𛂡 𛂢 𛂣 𛂤 𛂥 𛂦 𛂧 𛂨 𛂩 𛂪 𛂫 𛂬 𛂭 𛂮 𛂯
U+1B0Bx 𛂰 𛂱 𛂲 𛂳 𛂴 𛂵 𛂶 𛂷 𛂸 𛂹 𛂺 𛂻 𛂼 𛂽 𛂾 𛂿
U+1B0Cx 𛃀 𛃁 𛃂 𛃃 𛃄 𛃅 𛃆 𛃇 𛃈 𛃉 𛃊 𛃋 𛃌 𛃍 𛃎 𛃏
U+1B0Dx 𛃐 𛃑 𛃒 𛃓 𛃔 𛃕 𛃖 𛃗 𛃘 𛃙 𛃚 𛃛 𛃜 𛃝 𛃞 𛃟
U+1B0Ex 𛃠 𛃡 𛃢 𛃣 𛃤 𛃥 𛃦 𛃧 𛃨 𛃩 𛃪 𛃫 𛃬 𛃭 𛃮 𛃯
U+1B0Fx 𛃰 𛃱 𛃲 𛃳 𛃴 𛃵 𛃶 𛃷 𛃸 𛃹 𛃺 𛃻 𛃼 𛃽 𛃾 𛃿
Notes
1.^ As of Unicode version 13.0

The Unicode block for Kana Extended-A is U+1B100–U+1B12F:

Kana Extended-A[1][2]
Official Unicode Consortium code chart (PDF)
  0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 A B C D E F
U+1B10x 𛄀 𛄁 𛄂 𛄃 𛄄 𛄅 𛄆 𛄇 𛄈 𛄉 𛄊 𛄋 𛄌 𛄍 𛄎 𛄏
U+1B11x 𛄐 𛄑 𛄒 𛄓 𛄔 𛄕 𛄖 𛄗 𛄘 𛄙 𛄚 𛄛 𛄜 𛄝 𛄞
U+1B12x
Notes
1.^ As of Unicode version 13.0
2.^ Grey areas indicate non-assigned code points

Development of the hiragana syllabic n

Modern hiragana n.

The hiragana syllabic n (?) derives from a cursive form of the character ?, and originally signified /mu?/, the same as ?. The spelling reform of 1900 separated the two uses, declaring that ? could only be used for /mu?/ and ? could only be used for syllable-final Previously, in the absence of a character for the syllable-final /?/, the sound was spelled (but not pronounced) identically to /mu?/, and readers had to rely on context to determine what was intended. This ambiguity has led to some modern expressions based on what are, in effect, spelling pronunciations.

Modern usage

A soba restaurant: the sign reads " " kisoba nagai. Written right-to-left, kisoba has the kanji ? ki, and hentaigana , derived from the kanji ? so and ba (? ha with ? [dakuten]). The black vertical text nagai has ? na, ga (? ka with ?), both also below, and the kanji ? i.

Hentaigana are considered obsolete, but a few marginal uses remain. For example, otemoto (chopsticks), is written in hentaigana on some wrappers and many soba shops use hentaigana to spell kisoba on their signs. (See also: "Ye Olde" for "the old" on English signs.)

Hentaigana are used in some formal handwritten documents, particularly in certificates issued by classical Japanese cultural groups (e.g., martial art schools, etiquette schools, religious study groups, etc.). Also, they are occasionally used in reproductions of classic Japanese texts, akin to the use of blackletter in English and other Germanic languages to give an archaic flair. Modern poems may be composed and printed in hentaigana for visual effect.[9]

However, most Japanese people are unable to read hentaigana nowadays, only recognizing a few from their common use in shop signs, or figuring them out from context.

Gallery

Some of the following hentaigana are cursive forms of the same kanji as their standard hiragana counterparts, but simplified differently. Others descend from unrelated kanji that represent the same sound.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ The hentai (: "variant" or "irregular form") in this word is not the same as the hentai () which means "abnormal" or "pervert".
  2. ^ The reform was decreed in the 1900 revision of the Regulations on the Enforcement of the Elementary School Ordinance (, Sh?gakk?-rei Shik?kisoku) for primary school education.[2]

References

  1. ^ ?, , Eric Long (2003). . . pp. 35-36. ISBN 4-385-36112-6.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. ^ Frellesvig, Bjarke (2010-07-29). A History of the Japanese Language. Cambridge University Press. p. 160. ISBN 978-1-139-48880-8.
  3. ^ Tranter, Nicolas (2012). The Languages of Japan and Korea. Routledge. p. 218. ISBN 978-0-415-46287-7.
  4. ^ http://mojikiban.ipa.go.jp/xb164/
  5. ^ "MJ? ". mojikiban.ipa.go.jp. The Kanji ? derived from the Hentaigana of ?. Retrieved .CS1 maint: others (link)
  6. ^ Iannacone, Jake (2020). "Reply to The Origin of Hiragana /wu/ ?"
  7. ^ , (1966). . .
  8. ^ "Unicode 10.0.0". Unicode Consortium. June 20, 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  9. ^ The Japan Interpreter. Center for Japanese Social and Political Studies. 1976. p. 395.

External links


  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

Hentaigana
 



 



 
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