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Analyzing the Origin of the Japanese Language

Updated on October 19, 2015

Japanese is a language spoken by East Asians particularly those found in Japan where it is considered as the official language. The language is considered as being among the Japonic group language family and has been considered to be related with that of the Korea and other Altaic language family, though this has drawn much debate in recent years. The language whose previous history is almost not acknowledged portrays much power from the Chinese phonology and terminology. The Japanese language is well thought-out to be more-timed and agglutinative language that anchors trouble-free phonemic vowel, phonotacts, pitch-accent and a consonant length that is lexically significant. In this case, the word order is usually verb and subject-object in this language, whereby the structure of the sentence is normally topic-comment and particles make grammatical function of words. Sentence-final particles are employed in adding definite and touching impact or construct questions. Nouns do not encompass grammatical gender or figure hence there are no articles either. On the other hand, Verbs are normally conjugated, basically for voice or tense, but not person. The language has a complicated system of honorifics with vocabulary and verb forms indicating the relative status of the speaker, the person mentioned and the listener (Bjarke, 2010).

In accordance to Robbeets, the Japanese language has been related with many languages than any other language in the world. Since coming into the limelight of linguistics in 19th century, the Japanese has been able to show its genealogical relation to other language families. Some of the languages that have been closely found to be related with the Japanese include the Chinese, the Korean, the Ural-Altaic and the Ryukuan among others (Dalby, 2004).

Despite Japanese language having no genetic relationship with the Chinese language, it extensively utilized Chinese characters in their writing. Furthermore, much of its vocabulary is drawn from the Chinese. The writing system usually utilized two symmabic scripts and the Latin scripts. Japanese vowels are all pure in the sense that they have no diphthongs; rather, they only have monophthongs. The language also consists of five vowels, whereby each of the vowels have both long and short version. In most cases, elongated vowels are normally detonated with a line over a vowel (Dalby, 2004).


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