Kanji mnemonics in other languages?

I’m sure many of you are native in other languages other than English and come up with other mnemonics than the ones provided by WK or others that are obvious in English. Let’s share them here and inspire each other!

I can share some in Greek, my native language:

脳 - nou - “nous” (νους) means “mind” in Greek (which is the root word for “nootropics”, for example). Easy peasy!
薬 - kusuri - “kusuri” (κουσούρι) means “defect” in Greek. Kind of the opposite to “medicine.”
煙 - kemuri - “muri” (μούρη) in Greek means face. I think of a smoked face.
心 - kokoro - “kokoras” means “rooster” in Greek. I imagine the heart of a rooster, perhaps served with macaroni or something.

I’ll come back with more as they occur to me.


It’s not Greek, but renshuu.org has community mnemonics and translations

Here are the languages they have so far

Others are in progress I think, but these are maybe considered done enough?


I usually try to use Japanese in mnemonics, since the pronunciation aligns :slight_smile:

It’s all Greek to me

Whenever a Wanikani mnemonic comes up for “かく”, I like to replace that with a mnemonic using the german word “kack” (a word for shit), cause WK always uses “cock” which I don’t think fits the sound of かく at all.


In German it’s easy to distinguish transitive and intransitive:
下がる が ga-rnichts (nothing ) = intransitive so I know it’s to go down
下げる げ = Ge-genstand ( item ) so I know it’s to lower something

Best part is that this is quite a general rule:

投げる again with GE for Gegenstand (item) = transitive again


For me 綿 (わた) sounds like “Watte”.

わた sounds like a very British pronunciation of water

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That’s a cool rule, but it’s quite narrow unfortunately, only working for verb with が げ pairs.
I like the rule of checking if it ends with an “-aru” sound, and if it is, it’s intransitive.

For け か ( Käse - cheese = transitive) the same rules applies with か = Kain - nothing … Sorry for butchering the German language Kains = keins

Well at least it’s working for me.