#Nihongo Lesson – Small や(ya)、ゆ(yu)、よ(yo) and つ(tsu)

1. Small や、ゆ、よ

Please take a look at the charts below.

Hiragana III

katakana III

These are the 3rd chart for both Hiragana and Katakana. There is a feature in Japanese language which is called Youon where we combine the ending -i characters with ya, yu and yo.

Here, you need to look properly at the size of ya, yu and yo where those are written smaller than usual version.

りゅ(dragon) – is pronounce as ‘ryu’
りゆう(reason) – is pronounce as ‘riyuu’

From the example, both words aren’t pronounce similarly and have different meaning . Usual version of ‘ya’ will be pronounced as a separate character from ‘ri’ but for small ‘ya’, we will pronounce it as ‘ryu’.

2. Double consonant

Have you ever see some words are written like this:

あさって(asatte) – day after tomorrow
きって(kitte)       – stamp
ざっし(zasshi)     – magazine

If you notice, that we add a small  つ  between the double consonant. However, ‘tsu’ will no be pronounced in this case.
This is called Sokuon and only happen to consonant ‘tt’, ‘kk’ and ‘ss’.

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