Eggsistenial crisis: 卵 vs 玉子

So I recently was at a Japanese restaurant which had its menu items written in English and Japanese. Surprisingly, on their menu they had the word たまご (egg) written as 玉子 instead of 卵. It kind of makes sense (spherical child), but that’s definitely not what I was taught. Is it a regional thing? Maybe a way to write it for children? Have I been wrong all this time? Do I need to reset to level 1?


I totally remember this one :slight_smile:


Seems like I should have searched better on the forums. Thanks for your answer!

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Also 子 is an archaic word for a bird egg. I would expect that’s likely where the alternate form derives from.


Wish I’d seen that thread above too, though it was fun reading the answer from mamimumason in Japanese a few days ago.


I’ve never seen this but I have noticed that sometimes on menu’s “chicken and eggs” is called “bird and child” haha.

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Seems like the only logical solution to me. You should be ashamed of yourself!

Mods! Reset this poser to level zero and make them scrub the deck!


Or it could just be a reference to the meaning I point out above which is that it was an old word for bird egg.

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there is 親子丼 [parent/child/rice bowl] which is a rice bowl with chicken and egg.


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