何故 Alternate Reading?

Hi All,

I just got this lesson a couple of days ago for 何故, and the only reading listed is なぜ.

However, I’ve seen this reading before as なにゆえ, in games like Ni No Kuni. If anything i’d think this reading would come more often with the kanji haha

I’m thinking なにゆえ is potentially a somewhat archaic version of なぜ but I’m still seeing the former in present-day content so I thought maybe it would be worth looking into. :grin:

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Consulted Google for this one. The first several results were dictionary entries which offered both readings but didn’t seem to make much distinction between them. Eventually reached this result, which comments that なにゆえ is an older reading.

This page explains in a bit more detail about how なにゆえ is a bit more intuitive because it’s a kun’yomi, whereas なぜ is jukujikun, but doesn’t seem to talk much about the actual usage of either.

Purely anecdotally, I’ve basically never come across なにゆえ in the wild. I’d say you should go with なぜ unless you really know what you’re doing.

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Also, the most common thing is なぜ written in kana – the n-gram database on the edrdg webpage reports that it’s なぜ 70 to 80% of the time compared to 何故 20 to 30%.

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Hey snookifan! It looks like the etymology of the reading なにゆえ has been discussed. I see that it’s not currently accepted as an answer. My guess is that content might want to add it to gray warning shake list, since it is not incorrect, but may also not be the reading we would want to focus on! I will let them know about this.

Thanks for bringing this up!

-Nick at WK

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We’ve added なにゆえ to the warning list for 何故.

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