[TIL] Today I Learned - WK Style

Forgive me if there’s a similar topic in existence, I’ve had a search and checked the “similar to” tab, but any that I found were either dead, closed, or not similar to what I had in mind. If I’m wrong, feel free to move this to somewhere more appropriate. So, I was thinking it’d be cool to share whatever we’ve learned on WK recently (or about our Japanese learning), as opposed to just anything from general life. Allow me to go first.

Today I learned that a Japanese prefecture is named after its compass heading. E.g. Tohoku is 東北 which literally means Northeast. I found it really cool and practical that the prefecture had a meaningful name like that, and I look forward to learning other words where the component kanji has some obvious and readily understandable connection to what it’s about: though I know many probably won’t.

Also, Tokyo, 東京、means “East Capital” - again, so relevant! :smiley:

I look forward to hearing about your interesting revelations.


Touhoku is a region, not a prefecture, but yeah.


Welp, I need to do a lot more learning :rofl: Today I learned Touhoku is a region, not a prefecture. :sweat_smile:


Though, there is one prefecture named after its direction - Hokkaido. And it’s also a region. Only prefecture in Japan that’s also a region. Also, the only prefecture with the -do suffix.

On a similar note, China’s capital, Beijing, means “North Capital” (to differentiate it from Nanjing, “Southern Capital”). 北京.


That’s good to know! Most place names have an etymology if you dig deep enough, but I like these ones that are more apparent at first glance.

Not exactly today but it still blows my mind when I can connect things together.

When I learned 遊戯 (play) it went a little something like this: “Hmm “Yuugi”? Sounds a lot like Yugi from Yu-Gi-Oh! And Yugi plays card games. Easy. Found the perfect mnemonic. But now I’m curious, what is Yugi’s kanji?”



WK you’re missing the perfect mnemonic opportunity!


All place names have an etymology. It tends to be more obvious in Japanese than English, because they’re written in characters that have inherent meanings.

From wikipedia: Yu-Gi-Oh! (遊戯王 Yū-Gi-Ō! , lit. “Game King”)

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Talking about prefectures, I just learned that Aichi prefecture (愛知県) is the prefecture of Love+Wisdom. Funny that many Japanese friends have always told me they believe girls from Aichi to be the most beautiful in Japan. It all makes sense now!


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