Resources for Learning Tohoku Dialect?

TL;DR: Do you know of any good resources (articles, videos, etc) to teach Tohoku Dialect a bit in depth?

I want to go to Tohoku and I just found out the dialect is impossible to understand. Not only is the intonation and sounds different, but the grammar structure is fundamentally changed. I realized that I probably wont be able to understand much, but hopefully if I learn some of the grammar patterns it should be possible to get by a bit. However, after googling and looking around, most resources I found are very sparse. They usually go over some of the unique words and pronunciations, but the grammar never gets explained detailed. I do not know if it is too much to try to learn it, since even Japanese native speakers struggle, and I know that there are many variations among the different Tohoku dialects, but if you know of any decent resource then please share it


I don’t know anything, but have you tried looking for books where characters speak Tohoku-ben? Maybe taking it slower in reading form would help you be able to parse it and put it together. I’m sure after a bit you’d be able to pick up on some patterns.

I love dialects! ^>^

I did a quick search and looked up the wikipedia page to learn it’s 東北弁 and than using that to continue my search. Found several videos that might interest you I’m sure you can find loads of stuff if you are fine with mono-lingual sources as well.

Example of what Tohoku-ben sounds like. Yeah, this is hard stuff to comprehend! :joy: that being said, it’s not impossible, if you know “how to listen” I feel, when you’ve gotten the gist of it. ^^


If helpful, I posted a Fukushima-ben dialect deck on Kitsun here. They are mostly phrases borrowed from LINE stickers known through Fukushima along with a some phrases (w/ audio) from assorted resources like youtube videos. I had someone from that region give the accurate standard versions. Overall, a small deck that is enough to have fun with…didn’t get too crazy on region specific areas, unless you are in that area it won’t be helpful as even natives get lost on stuff…happy to add more to develop if there are solid resources but usefulness would be a priority rather desolate countryside phrases. Also had a Kansai-ben deck for anyone interested as well.

I think it depends who you talk with, all with varying degrees on attempts to talk more standard. But trying to catch outside conversations of natives in full dialect mode, whew…tough, probably takes time while living there.


What. 僕だけがいない街 didn’t prepare me for this.

1 Like

Having spent one year in Sendai. Do note that you may never hear the dialect spoken in the city.

Most people speak the “normal” Japanese there. If you go in the country side it might be different.

It’s most likely because of the university of tohoku that brings so many students from across Japan and also just regular tourism.

Now if you just want to learn the dialect then go ahead!


This topic was automatically closed 365 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.