Reading not in dictonary

Hi everyone,

i came across the word for goodmorning as おはよう and as お早う

but 早 i can only find the reading はや

When i try to look it up on i cannot find the はよ reading for 早.
how are you supposed to learn the reading for kanji like this when used in words with a reading thats not in a dictonary?


I’m not sure I understand, I found it fine on Jisho?

Edit: I think I know what you mean now… the reading of 早 in おはよう isn’t used in any other word, so I think it’s just an exception… either way, it’s VERY unlikely you’ll ever see おはよう written in anything but kana.

Kanji have exceptional readings, in addition to their on and kun readings.

You won’t find any part of きょう listed as a reading for 今 or 日, even though putting them together makes that reading.

That’s just a fact of kanji.

Now, お早う is a bit different in that it’s an archaic conjugation that only exists in modern Japanese in that greeting (as well as some other set phrases), but the principle still applies. You will find ways of reading kanji that aren’t listed for that kanji’s on or kun.

And as MasterSenSenpai said, there’s no reason to be mad that you can’t “properly study” お早う because you’re extremely unlikely to ever see it.


As far as I understand it, current standard Japanese was based on the Edo dialect, but since people from all over Japan lived in Edo at the time, features from other dialects got included as well. In time the conjugation for お早うございます turned into a fixed phrase, but it used to be used for all adjectives in honorific speech. Nowadays you’ll most likely only hear it in the most formal of occasions or if reading an older text. A more modern honorific version is お早いです.

That said, if you want to study this conjugation, here’s an Imabi article about it (scroll down 形容詞: 連用形 + ございます) :

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Just another thing i gotta hammer down into memorisation then.

Thx for all the answers :slight_smile: this really is a great community

It has it’s moments :wink:

Good luck with your studies :bowing_man:

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