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Japanese Names for Boys and Girls

Updated on October 28, 2014

Modern Japanese Names 2012

Older Japanese names have always had 3 or 4 syllables making the name difficult to remember for westerners. Names like Takayuki, Fumie or Takako would not sound right for a western name. However recent Japanese names have become much shorter, easier to pronounce and remember, using mainly two syllables such as Rina, Rui, Sena. These modern Japanese names tend to be more attractive for westerners to name their babies.

The good thing about Japanese names is that they are normally represented using Kanji (Japanese Chinese imported characters) which give a true and accurate meaning of the name, however the used Kanji is usually a very old and unique character for names. It is quite difficult to get good English translations of the name.

Boys Japanese Name Ranking

  1.  Hiroto (Hiro - toe) - means: Big Rush, Lots of running.
  2. Yuma (You - ma) - means: Eternal Truth
  3. Sho (Show) - means: To soar
  4. Souta (Saw - ta) - means: Rapid Sun
  5. Ayumu (ai - yu - mu) - means: Walking in a dream
  6. Souma (Saw-ma) - Means: Rapid/quick truth
  7. Sora - Means: Vast/open/space
  8. Yuto (you - toe) - means ----N/A-----
  9. Hiromasa - means: Elegancy
  10. Sou (saw) - means: Haste, speedy, quick

Girls Japanese Name Ranking

  1. Sakura - means: Cherry blossom
  2. Hana - means: Sun fields/plants/
  3. Yui - (You - ee) - means: Bonded love
  4. Rico - means: ----N/A-----
  5. Mio - (Me yo) - means: Beautiful cherry blossoms
  6. Miyu  (Me you) - means: Beautiful feathers
  7. Aoi (A oi) - means: Hollyhock
  8. Saki - means: ----N/A----
  9. Hina - means: ---N/A----
  10. Momoka  means: ----N/A----

Meanings of Japanese names

You will notice that some of the meanings in the above names are not available. This is because is Japanese there can be multiple characters that have the same sound for any given name but with different meanings.

The Japanese written name ranking list is slightly different to the actual phonetic ranking list.

Recently I have noticed that many Japanese names don't actually use a Chinese character, they are based on a phonetic sound with no particular meaning, especially famous people who often never show their original Kanji of their name.

In Japan, us foreigners don't get Kanji for our names, we spell our names phonetically in the Katakana script. However sometime a Kanji is used but not officially.

e.g. Obama - 小浜


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