お一人さま Pronunciation

When going through the context sentences for “一つ” I came across the following sentence:
お一人さま一つかぎりです。

When I attempted to read this I read it as “おひとりさま” but in the provided audio example it sounds more like ‘おかすとさま’. I couldn’t find anything about this so I figured I’d use the forum for the first time to ask. Any help understanding is appreciated, thank you!

Hi and welcome.
I would read it the same as you and that’s the only thing that makes sense in my mind.

Only thing I can think of it’s that it is a persons name: 一人 #names - Jisho.org

かずと maybe? without the recording it is hard to say ^^
Seems strange though since most of them are marked as given name and adressing one by a given name but with さま seems …

Do you have more info where you get the audio for the sentence or even where the sentence is from?

1 Like

The sentence is on this page WaniKani / Vocabulary / 一つ
But there’s no audio sample to go with it, that might be a userscript.

It should be pronounced おひとりさま.

5 Likes

Ah okay. Yes with the translation I agree 100%. No doubt it’s read ひとり.

1 Like

Could it be a loan word inserted instead of the “actual” reading? かすと seems like it could be カストマー, which would fit into the sentence meaning-wise as well. 一人 as “one person” doesn’t make much sense with 一つかぎりです - “one person is limited to one”.

Specifying お一人様 as being individual customers makes a bit of sense - “one customer at a time”, so maybe it’s done as a sort of disambiguation? Just guessing here.

Note that I’m not sure this is a thing that really happens. I think I’ve seen it sometimes, but I can’t for the life of me think of an example.

2 Likes

I think whatever transliteration engine the userscript that does Text-to-Speech uses has some rules to figure out when a word is a name, and one of those rules is probably if it had honorifics like さん or さま attached to it.

In names 一 is often read かず when in the first position and 人 is often read と in the final position, so the userscript thinking it’s pronounced かずと makes sense.

The correct reading is definitely おひとりさま.

7 Likes

Is this some sort of kun’yomi fossil from prehistoric times or am I just unaware of some obvious circumstance in which Japanese people read one as かず?
Can’t find any words in which one is かず

人 being と is kinda ok. Just got rid of the ひ I guess

1 Like

It’s a nanori reading. Many kanji have lots of readings beyond on and kun, specifically for use in names.

So yeah, I wouldn’t call it a “kunyomi fossil.” I would just call it nanori.

5 Likes

But like, what’s the reason for it? How did the association come to be? Is there not some ancient reason for these nanori readings?

1 Like

There’s always some reason, right? I’m not sure why it matters much for this, since at this point I doubt any speaker thinks about it at all.

Could literally be related to 数 or 数える, but you’d probably need a name etymology dictionary or something.

It could also be a modification of something similar like かす or かつ.

Names are especially liberally constructed. Unless you’re particularly interested in names, it’s not worth spending much effort to track down every etymology. 一 has like 20 other readings used in names too. It can be as simple as “someone liked the sound of the name and the look or meaning of 一 and bam, they made a new name, and other people thought it was good too”

8 Likes

The wikipedia page for 人名訓, which has a list of some name-readings sorted by pronunciation, includes:

which agrees with you.

On the liberal construction of name readings, this academic article/paper on the wide variety of readings that can be used for a name written with particular kanji includes an example (結愛 to be read as ゆら) where they say of the ら reading for 愛: “This probably comes from the English word love, which is pronounced as rabu (らぶ) in Japanese and is abbreviated to ra” …

2 Likes

I just wanted to say thanks to everyone contributing to the conversation. I didn’t even realize it was a script because I pretty much exclusively access Wanikani through the Jakeipuu app (great app so far if anyone is interested). Here’s a Youtube link to audio clip but it does seem to come from a name as per previous answers: August 28, 2022 - YouTube

This topic was automatically closed 365 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.