mineraruwater and arbeit

AR Luria

New Member
german
Hello,

oh, it's not a translation I am seeking for, sorry - but perhaps someone could help.
I heard that words like the english mineralwater (as mineraruwater??) or the german Arbeit (means work) beneath others where used in japanese language.
If it's really so, are these words in common usage and every japanese knows what they mean or is it more a kind of extraordinary expression and not often used?

Greetings, Luria
 
  • Cereth

    Senior Member
    Español
    Wow, Luria like the famous psychologist :thumbsup: ..

    you are correct there´s many words in japanese that come from foreign languages, Miruku= milk, kissu= kiss, bi-ru= beer, pasocon = PC -personal computer- o konpyuta..
    nekureisu= necklace,
    and so on....
    i´ve hard arubaito which means part-time job, they also say Pan = pan (in spanish which means bread)

    but this is only what i know, let the natives give their opinions!

    mata ne!
     

    erick

    Senior Member
    English (USA)
    Luria, you present an interesting question, but there are perhaps hundreds or more likely thousands of such imported words in Japanese. It's gotten to the point where some older people can't understand the newspapers because of all the imported words.

    One word that comes to mind is アンケート from the French enquête meaning questionaire in Japanese. Many of the older imported words come from Portuguese (not Spanish) as there was a Portuguese mission in Kyushu. It's said that even Tempura comes from Portuguese.
    Arbeit in Japanese actually means part-time job. Often times imported words take on a slightly varied meaning.
    マスコミ = Mass communication / media, news outlets, etc.
    ホーム = I don't know how "home" became train "platform", but it sort of makes sense.
    カンニング = cunning --> to cheat
    オーバーする = over --> to exaggerate or overreact
    リストラ = restructure --> to downsize a company (and employees)
     

    Cereth

    Senior Member
    Español
    i mentioned Pan, but i never said it had its roots in spanish language, i just say it sounds equal to spanish.

    they use several words in the common language proceeding from languages of around the world...sometimes i really can´t pronounce them well, i have spoken english for so long that when i have to say "bracelet" or buresureto i just do this funny accent.

    yesterday i just heard "robureta" (forgive if i don´t write ok, it´s a new word for me), but it means "love letter"
     

    erick

    Senior Member
    English (USA)
    Outsider said:
    It may be derived from tempero.
    That's great Outsider. Is there actually a Portuguese dish called tempero? Or does it just mean a seasoning that you apply to a dish. I'd be so curious to see a Portuguese tempero and compare it with delicious Japanese Tempura. Do you have something similar? Mmm, I'm getting hungry.
     

    Outsider

    Senior Member
    Portuguese (Portugal)
    We don't have a dish called tempero, it just means seasoning. There must have been a shift in the meaning of the word when it entered Japanese.

    Wikipedia gives an alternative origin for tempura, but I don't know if it's accurate:

    The origin of the word tempura is due to Portuguese missionaries that ate fish due to the Catholic proscription against meat during Lent, in Latin, "ad tempora cuaresmae", meaning "in the time of Lent".
    By the way, and going back to the original topic, these neologisms are called gairaigo in Japanese.
     

    Flaminius

    coclea mod
    日本語 / japāniski / יפנית
    erick said:
    ホーム = I don't know how "home" became train "platform", but it sort of makes sense.
    . . . . . . .
    リストラ = restructure --> to downsize a company (and employees)
    ホーム(hoomu) is from (plat)form. In older borrowings, /f/ regularly becomes /h/. English postvocalic R sounds, to a Japanese ear, as though it is elongating the vowel it follows.

    リストラ (risutora) is a horrible word with comical mien. Risu is squirrel and tora is tiger in Japanese. Whenever I hear someone has got restructured (リストラされる; risutora-sareru), I sympathise with him for having a squirrel and a tiger as parents.

    Here are two other cimeras as threatening as restructuring:
    トラウマ (torauma). From trauma. Tora is tiger and uma is horse.
    コンサル (konsaru). From consulting/consultant. Kon is onomatopoeia for fox bark and saru is monkey.
     

    AR Luria

    New Member
    german
    Thanks for your answers, it was a pleasure to read.

    I have something to add and want to explain my thoughts.
    Because reading the lines I have written (without seeing my face) the intension behind this question could become misinterpreted.
    Ofcourse I didn't meant it as affront or something like that.
    Many languages have it's imported words and in my opinion it's a gain or necessity.
    But I suppose the terms that meant milk or work were already there in japan/japanese language before contact and exchange with the cultures these words come from.
    So, I was wondering about such "easy" words like water and job or the ones you gave as example - kiss, milk, beer - how and why they could become integrated.

    But it is interesting to hear that the meaning of these words sometimes becomes different (and perhaps this is an answer therefor).
    Thanks again.

    And to comment Flaminius' note to "torauma/trauma. Tora is tiger and uma is horse" - it's nice and I like this. :)

    Luria
     

    Cereth

    Senior Member
    Español
    Well there is another word for "milk" = gyunyuu
    and Job is "Shigoto", to work = hatarakimasu

    i have always wonder if there is a japanese word for "Kiss" -not kissu of course-...... i think they had to know kisses before americans arrived to Japan....i hope a native can answer.
     

    Flaminius

    coclea mod
    日本語 / japāniski / יפנית
    Kiss is 口づけ (kuchidzuke) or 接吻 (seppun) as dictionaries would have it. But I have never heard people utter them in everyday conversation. Onomatopoeic チュー (chuu) is often used by young people these days but is hardly a universal register.
     

    Aoyama

    Senior Member
    français Clodoaldien
    Hundreds of gailaigo in japanese, many "change clothes" when they enter nipponese. Arubaito (now rather baito for the young generation) means a part-time job (though they are a few other words/gailaigo for those jobs, depending on their exact kind). Most of the foreign words who land in japanese acquire some added value , very often different from their original meaning. There is also the case of "japanese" english words (called japlish), which do not exist in english . Same thing with french, with some rare words also from dutch and german, not to speak about chinese (sino-japanese words).
    Some example : coin-laundry, side-business, office-lady, paper-test, side-break, morning-set, winker (car) , one-man etc
    from french : abekku (from avec, here meaning a couple), torabayu (travail) etc
    from dutch : buriki (brick), dontaku (zontag) etc
    some words mix japanese and english : mantan (full tank)
    pan comes from portuguese (not from the french pain, as many believe) but bureddo (bread) is also used (meaning is sligthly different)
    tempura (but the issue is still debated) would come from an expression meaning " this is the time when we eat fish" in portuguese or in latin because it is said that a Daimyo was invited aboard a ship on a friday an was given fried (cod ?)fish to eat. Tempura, the word (written in ateji -phonetic chinese caracters- ) and the food, have changed and are "completely" japanese. You many even have tempura aisukurimu .
    By the way, harakiri is NOT a japanese word, seppuku is.
     

    SpiceMan

    Senior Member
    Castellano, Argentina
    Off the top of my head, things you get to hear in Japan:
    トライする torai (try) suru -> to try
    チャレンジする charenji (challenge) suru -> give something a try
    カップ kappu -> cup
    エレベーター erebe-ta- -> elevator
    スクリュードライバー sukuryu-doraiba- -> screwdriver (don't dare to think that a japanese will know what a screw or sukuryu- is)
    ドライブする doraibu (drive) suru -> to drive (a car) around, or go somewhere riding a car.
    超ベリバー chou beri ba- -> super very bad (this is kinda a localism, I forgot where from. But it's well known elsewhere.)
    コック cokku -> cook, chef (from dutch, kok).
    パスタ pasta -> spaghetti. The rest has other names (ie: gnocchi is nyokki, not considered "pasta").

    my personal favorites:
    マンション manshon -> apartment.
    マイ[any object] mai [object] -> it means "personal", "your own". is not the english possesive. ie: "mai kappu arimasu ka" is not asking if you have the cup belonging to the person asking, but asking you if you have a cup that is used only by yourself (ie: not by other family members, etc).

    There are zillions of gairaigo. I think the rule of thumb is to ask what does the word means as if the word was 100% japanese. Very different and even opposite meanings to the original word are not uncommon.
     

    Aoyama

    Senior Member
    français Clodoaldien
    There are zillions of gairaigo. I think the rule of thumb is to ask what does the word means as if the word was 100% japanese. Very different and even opposite meanings to the original word are not uncommon.
    That is quite true. Not quite -again- zillions but certainly many, a few thousands probably, enough to require a dictionary and some up-to-date lexicon each year. One has to wonder about this propensity the Japanese have towards "borrowed words", a unique feature, no nation has borrowed (and digested) so many "outside words". One would expect then every Japanese to be , at least, bilingual ... Well ...
     

    SpiceMan

    Senior Member
    Castellano, Argentina
    Hmm... I think it's the other way around. Every language has "loan words". In fact all european languages are mostly borrowed words (from latin, vulgar latin, greek, ancient arab, old french, old norse, old german, old slavic, etc.) For instance, Spanish has about 2000 words with arab roots. English has some too, such as alcohol, algebra, etc.

    As time passed the words became part of the language. Just looking at any word etymology shows you where the word was "borrowed" from. Japan was culturally closed for a very long period, and the borrowed words stand out.
     

    Aoyama

    Senior Member
    français Clodoaldien
    But the case of Japan (and japanese) is different. Of course, vocabulary interpenetration is universal, through travels, wars, natural expansion. Japan has the uniqueness of being an island, virtually closed (not completely though) to foreigners for centuries. But together with that isolation, the paradox is that Japan developped a dual syllabary (hiragana and katakana, as we know), one -katakana- devoted to transcribe foreign words (mostly chinese, at the beginning). Both kanas are derived from calligraphical forms of chinese caracters , and ,of course, we also know that Japan borrowed chinese caracters (kanjis) and wrote "japanese in chinese" though both languages are completely different syntax wise. This "duality" clearly shows the uniqueness of japanese "bilingualism" or even "multilingualism", completely different from what occurs in other languages.
    The relation between chinese and japanese is often -and erroneously- compared to that of the link between greek and latin and most european languages. Not so, Japan was never (until Meiji era ,but really only after 1945) an "open area". Still, even being closed -geographically and mentally- the Japanese developped, voluntarily, without being forced by any invaders or outside rulers, a linguistic system, graphic, phonetical, quite imperfect but useful enough to render their language, based on a completely different language.
     
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