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Japanese Proper Nouns

0.82MB. 0 audio & 0 images. Updated 2013-07-05.


This is a collection of the 10,036 most commonly used proper nouns in the Japanese language. Statistical and pronunciation information was pulled from Japanese Wikipedia. (Forgive me for any mistakes that arose from the automatic generation. I tried hard to remove as many as possible.) It includes, basically, all common proper nouns that are used on Japanese Wikipedia, which have kanji. That is, it also includes very popular Chinese and Korean names (for example, 金 has included as キム, and 張 has チャン, as well as 北京 for Peking/Beijing). It does not include extremely rare ways of writing cities, such as 新約克 for "New York." Additionally, the commonness of a name as it's noun as a place or as it's known as a person is also included. For example, 堺 was measured to be used as a place 70% of the time, and as a family name 30% of the time, so it is listed as "location 70%, family name 30%". Names are categorized into either personal names (per), family names (fam), or location names (loc). I included both the "full form" of prefectures/cities, e.g. 大阪府 and 大阪市, as well as the abbreviated form, e.g. 大阪. I did this because it's important to recognize 大阪 as a place, regardless of where or how you see it, and it's also important to know how to read tricky names, such as whether 村 is むら or そん. The direction is only Kanji->Reading. I did this because it is completely useless and overwhelmingly difficult to be able to write every single location and name in the Japanese language. Additionally, there are very many names such as ひろし that may be written in more than 50 different ways--obviously there is no need for any sane human being to memorize all of them. The collection contains just over 10,000 entries, which includes just about everything of any decent importance. For comparison, 日本 (Japan) and 東京 (Tokyo) are the first two entries. 北京, the capital of China, ranks in at the 265th entry. 那覇市, the largest city in Okinawa is the 587th entry. 安部, the current prime minister is the 880th entry. 秋葉原, the otaku mecca, ranks in at the 1,036th entry. 祇園, the popular Geisha district in Kyoto, ranks in at around 5,000. 五反田, a particularly unimportant train station along the Yamanote Line which is not near anything of any particular importance ranks in at 6496. Unfortunately, and despite what many Westerners may think after seeing the legions of Tanakas and Satous and Yamadas, there are actually a *very* large number of Japanese family names. There are a very tiny number of names that are insanely common, and then a very, very lage number of names that are incredibly rare. As such, this deck contains the names of less than 75% of all Japanese people. However, since kanji follow very general rules in names (which is separate from their rules in non-proper nouns), someone who has practiced this deck should have only minor problems trying to recognize and read any proper noun. They will be at least as proficient at reading names as any native Japanese speaker. There are some issues with the deck. For example, 無人駅 (a train station which has no attendants) was miscategorized as a proper noun referring to a location. As such, 無人駅 and 無人 are marked as "locations" in the deck. However, issues such as these are quite rare, and there are worse things than learning how to read 無人駅. I don't know of any others, but I am sure they exist. Other times, there have been some problems such as Non-Japanese of Japanese decent, or people with partial Japanese ancestry, or other people using English word order for their names, but still writing them in kanji. As such, there are some places where names like すずき are marked as personal names in very rare scenarios, or have been marked to be read in katakana and not hiragana. I apologize for these mistakes and errors. There is no need to memorize the exact statistics. They are only included to show how important each reading is. For example, it is very important to know that 日本 can be read as either にっぽん or にほん, which are both equally valid readings, so it is marked as 50%, 50%. In other cases, it is important to know that 千葉 usually refers to the locatoin (82% of the time, to be exact), but can also refer to a person (18% of the time, to be exact), so it has those statistics included. However, there is absolutely no need to memorize the precise statistics. Note: Despite what it looks like in the "sample entry", the cards are well-formatted into tables, and it is very easy to read the answers.

Sample (from 10036 notes)

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Kanji 昭仁
Readings (per)あきひと(100%)
Commonness 400
Kanji 莞爾
Readings (per)かんじ(100%)
Commonness 260
Readings (fam)そ(88%)(fam)スー(12%)
Commonness 188

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on 1665638730
on 1659215674
Exceptional. Finally, I will be able to read the names of the characters in videogames as I play in Japanese. I will be doing this at about 500 new cards per day, so according to my calculations I'll be done before August is over. Excited.
on 1651600612
Exactly what I was looking for! Thanks for creating this. :)
on 1635669084
Awesome deck, I can finally read the names during the credits of the shows I watch
Am doing this deck at a rate of 100 cards a day, wish me luck, I should finish by Jan 2022
on 1633876099
on 1633190053
Fantastic. Was finally able to get a handle on place and people names after struggling with them for ages
on 1613667093
This deck is great despite its shortcomings.
on 1610071845
Good compilation
on 1591014247
Amazing deck. Thank you
on 1586363210
exactly what i was looking for, thank you!
on 1584124632
on 1579636759
Just what I was looking for. Obviously I am not looking to memorize every possible name and reading, but this seems like the perfect deck to build up some familiarity to make good guesses when I don't know.
on 1577124872
Great deck. Exactly as described.
on 1575925302
This is a great deck. I've always had a hard time with names of people, and they are not always easy to look up so this was a great find.
on 1570625751
just awesome...
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on 1548493994
Exactly what I was looking for!
on 1547067229
Very Helpful
on 1530395908
very useful deck!
on 1524009600
too bad I found this way too late
on 1516665600
Thank you!
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