Never seen that one before

And you probably haven’t either



I saw that it existed in the API but didn’t look to see if it had been used at all :sweat_smile:. That’s pretty cool though.

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Woah, what happened here :joy: . I actually had to look up that kanji. TIL that it’s even a 常用. Never seen it before.

Yes, some kanji had it as a field in the UI for a while as well, but it was never used.


There has been the place for nanori readings for quite a while on WK, but it’s the first time I see it being the required reading :sweat_smile:


I’m a newbie to these community posting business and I’m totally lost about this post. You have three replies making comments that are FAR beyond my comprehension.

This kanji is in Level 36, it means ‘uncle’ and the nanori reading is お. So I don’t understand why you’re posting WaniKani’s message that it’s looking for the nanori reading. Unless you’re commenting that WaniKani is not aware of what it has in its own database???

Can you explain what is the purpose of your post to a clueless Japanese learner and even how the comments addresses your post?

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The kunyomi and onyomi readings are far more common.

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The nanori reading has existed beside the on’yomi and kun’yomi readings on every WaniKani page since before I joined in late 2019. Here’s the reading section of 岸, for example:

This kanji is pretty standard with an on’yomi reading presented that is used in lots of compounds like 沿岸. It’s also got a kun’yomi reading used in the word 岸 (きし). There is no nanori reading listed. This is how the overwhelming majority of kanji on the site are listed. Nanori readings are basically readings used exclusively in names.

Again, this is how the overwhelming majority of kanji are here on WaniKani, maybe missing an on’yomi or kun’yomi sometimes but never having a nanori. I don’t think there used to be a kanji with it’s primary reading being nanori before the ‘reality’ levels (51-60) so most users won’t run into them at all since most users won’t get that far. Even now with 叔 being moved down to 36 most users won’t encounter it.

Then even if you do make it to kanji that have, you have not only have to get the reading wrong (which you are of course trying your hardest to NOT do), but you also have to put in the on’yomi reading which WaniKani never taught and is different from both 叙 and 寂’s on’yomi. Only then will you get the text saying ‘WaniKani is looking for the nanori reading.’

Gotta get a high level and make a weird mistake that you really have no reason to make


You actually got me curious enough to find out exactly how many kanji have nanori readings listed. Here’s the results:

Kanji Nanori Level Reading is Accepted?
かず 1 No
ひろ 1 No
おお 3 No
5 No
なた 6 No
6 No
かず 9 No
より 9 No
はる 12 No
とよ 25 No
こう 26 No
こお 26 No
28 No
わたる 29 No
すけ 35 No
36 Yes
いつき 41 No
あや 48 No
すけ 52 Yes
きゅう 53 No
駿 はやお 53 No
とも 56 No
すが 58 Yes

There are 21 kanji with a total of 23 nanori readings. Only 3 kanji actually accept the nanori reading in reviews in levels 36, 52, and 58.


I got the gist of your explanation in your third paragraph. Basically it means Wanikani is giving you a hint to the correct answer as in the following scenario, for example:

I got the answer wrong, WK leaves it alone.
Then I inputted the on’yomi reading, しゅく, and now WK is saying ‘close but no cigar,’ here’s a hint!

The problem with my example (hence my understanding of what you said) is that you entered 答 (kotae) which in my example, WK wouldn’t have provided the hint. To complicate matters you said I have to enter the on’yomi reading (しゅく) and because it is different from both “describe” and “lonely,” I would then get the hint.

I can understand my example for getting the hint. But you seem to be adding additional requirements in order to get the hint and I’m totally lost with that.

Bottom line, I got the gist of WK’s message; it’s a hint to the correct answer. If you want to drop it because I can’t follow your reasoning, I’m okay with that.

Thank you so much for your explanation!


Thanks for researching this, very interesting to see how rare nanori is! Curious how WK will include these nanori but only accept three of them in the reviews???


I’d say the situation is like this:

  • If you enter the wrong reading for the item – it would count as wrong answer.
  • If you enter the right reading that WK wants you to remember as the main reading for that item – then it would count as right answer.
  • If you enter the right reading, but WK wants you to remember another reading for that item – it will give you the hint.

For some kanji, WK wants you to remember their on’yomi, because it’s more common. For some kanji – kun’yomi is more common, so WK would want you to enter kun’yomi instead. And for some kanji – nanori seems to be more common, so WK would expect nanori.


Thanks for your simple explanation which allows me to understand it perfectly!!!

Just so you and Exto know, when it comes to reading explanations, I’m a combination of wanting to know simple to understand explanations and getting into the nitty gritty explanations.

Thanks to both of you, I appreciated both explanations A LOT!


I would say it’s more of an arbitrary choice in a couple of cases. WK wants you to remember a reading, because WK thinks it’s important. It doesn’t necessarily correlate with how common a given reading is :slight_smile:

@DuoLingo from a meta perspective you rarely need to know the nanori reading of a kanji if one exists. Names and surnames often use either onyomi or kunyomi. There are exceptions and non-standard readings, but that’s imho a low priority for an app which wants to teach you kanji as soon feasible.


I’d like to point out that I can’t find any sources saying お is a nanori reading for 叔. It seems like WaniKani may have just made that up because it’s not kun’yomi or on’yomi either. But it’s certainly the most logical reading to teach since 叔父 is a common word, and maybe WaniKani just had to force it in somehow.


While 叔父 is indeed read as おじ, it is the whole that is read that way, and not any reading of the individual kanji.

In 河豚 for example, ふ is not a reading of 河 either.


Right, which is why I think WaniKani opted for a hack to “make it work”. It’s a shame, because if their system was more flexible that probably wouldn’t have been necessary.


I think it would’ve been as simply as just renaming the nanori reading field to “other readings”.

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These are just readings that are used for people / place names right?

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It appears that 〔「を(小)ち(父)」から〕, so it is an unlisted reading of 父.

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Does this imply that it is not, in fact, used in any names of places or people ( read as お)