I’ve got rendaku on the brain and just want to gather data.
Hypothesis: compounds formed with the initial word being an i-adjective consistently do not undergo rendaku.
Background research: In my Japanese Linguistics class, we discussed the possible origin of rendaku arising from compounds initially made with の. For example, 海の亀 uminokame → uminkame → umigame ウミガメ。 If I can find the paper that first proposed this theory, I will link it here. Other background research: I can’t find papers via Google Scholar that mention i-adjectives being a blocker of rendaku, but I also don’t have access to many full papers and I may be a bit lazy to read through dozens of 30+ papers on rendaku.
Goal: gather compound words made with an initial i-adjective that either do or don’t experience rendaku. I’ll fill and edit a wiki that I intend to make shortly after this and other users are welcome to add words as well. I suspect though that like some of my other language projects on the forums that I might forget about continuing this one. Such is life. So while I would like to make a comprehensive list, please don’t be upset if it’s short.
Notes for editing the list!
Please use the dictionary form of the words
Please arrange the words in the Japanese order aka 五十音
~The Rendaku-less List~
First Word (must be an i-adjective)
Second Word (can be anything)
~The Rendaku List~
Note: for this list, it is fine to include i-adjectives that are also nouns without the end い
I had meant for the first list to include both, but you’re right that another list would probably be much better.
For both of these, it’s really interesting to note that both of the first words can stand as nouns on their own. I don’t have the level of Japanese yet to do worthwhile etymology, but I would propose that the noun forms of these words existed first and that’s why they experience (sometimes optional) rendaku. Thank you! This helps support my theory and evokes more questions!
The Tofugu people did a research about it a couple years ago. You might find a bunch of more interesting example in there. They also discuss concepts like dvandva or lyman’s law and common mistakes or exceptions. They also linked their sources at the end of the article. Hope it will help you with your research