English to Japanese Translation – Origins of Japanese Language

in Japanese

Japanese Language Structure

If you are considering using an English to Japanese translation service, you may be like to know a bit about the origins of the Japanese language.  Though other languages, like Chinese, may be much harder to learn, Japanese is fascinating and has its own challenges.  The Japanese language is di-syllabic, which means most of its words are composed of two syllables.  All of the syllables are consonant-vowel, making Japanese adaptations of Western words incomprehensible to most English speakers.  The language has a very different structure based upon the honorifics, which mark the rank of the person you are referring or speaking to, as well as your own rank, when added to the words.  This language factor was not original, but, instead, began solidifying around the Tokugawa period (early 1600s -1860s), as social class structure increased. Not only is social class named in this way, but gender as well.  Traditional female speech is full of honorifics and “tentative” tenses which show submission to males.

Japanese Language Origins Debatable

The Japanese language’s origins are widely debated, but the Western consensus appears to be that it is related to a language that used to be spoken in northern Asia.  This language split off into several other languages, which include Korean.  Since Japanese people likely came from these areas, they likely brought a variation of those dialects with them.  The Pacific Island languages, which surround the Japanese islands, were also an influence.  This theory is called the Altaic language theory.  A second theory is that the Altaic languages merged with the Austronesian languages (the languages of the Pacific Islands) to form a third, different language, which eventually developed into Japanese.  According to this theory, Japanese is an Altaic language influenced by the Austronesian language or an Austronesian language influenced by the Altaic language.  (This is as yet undecided.)  The distinct, third theory is that Japanese was originally related to Tibetan, and was brought to Japan up to five thousand years ago by migrating Southeast Asians.  This language combined with Altaic and Austronesian to make modern Japanese.

A Point that Most Linguists Agree Upon

Whichever theory you may subscribe to, there is, apparently, a general consensus that Japanese is related, at least in part, to the Pacific Island and northern Asian languages, though the extent of this relation is greatly debated.  These specific points have been debated for such a long time that official debates have degraded to insult-hurling!

English to Japanese Translation and Your Business

The history of the Japanese language is rich, despite being somewhat undefined.  A professional English to Japanese translation service can utilize this beautiful, complex language to help you share your services with the world.

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Ricardo Lumbardo has 272 articles online

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English to Japanese Translation – Origins of Japanese Language

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This article was published on 2011/11/30