To み or not to み...what is the answer?

Level 11: 仕組み しくみ

The kun’yomi reading for ‘group’ is くみ. So, in my simple mind I’m thinking the pronunciation should be ‘しくみみ’ or the kanji should be without the kana ‘み’ added at the end since the kun’yomi reading already has the ‘み’ included.

Can someone explain the fallacy in my reasoning?

I can’t explain it but I’ve seen it before :x
I’ve seen はなし being written both 話し and 話.
I don’t worry about it too much.

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:smile: Thanks!!! I get the feeling that I’m going to have to do what that song says to do, 'Don’t worry, be happy! Unfortunately, it seems that is going to HAVE TO BE a repetitive phrase over and over.

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Hi! I’ve yet to study that particular kanji, but it reminded me of how まつり can be written both as 祭 and 祭り!

I tried researching it just now, and seems only one can be used alone, and the other would have to be connected to something (other kanjis) - could it be the case for other similar kanjis too?

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Thanks, I appreciate your effort and I like the reasoning you came up with! At least it sounds reasonable to me.

Thanks again!

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So the くみ reading comes from the noun form of くむ —the -ます stem can function as a noun on its own, and is also used in compounds, whether noun compounds like this or verb compounds. (Although 仕組み is technically the noun form of 仕組む, but the noun seems to be a lot more common than the verb.)

Since くみ is a conjugation of く.む and there is no くみ.む, then 組み can only be くみ. It’s merely that the み can either be “inside” the kanji or outside it. 話 has the verb form 話す, and the noun is the same as the -ます stem of the verb. With 話し though, I think I mostly see it when it’s a verb or part of a verb phrase, and when it’s purely a noun it’s generally written without the trailing し.

You’ll see this happen a lot. Compounds formed from two verbs can be written with the final kana of both on the outside, with the first on the inside and the last on the outside, or with both on the inside. 受付 is almost always written with both inside, but it’s still a kun’yomi compound and pronounced as if it were written 受け付け, though more often than not, similar compounds will have at least the last one on the outside, like say 引き出し/引出し.

As you come across the phenomenon more often, you’ll get the hang of it

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The bureaucratic answer here I think is “組 is explicitly listed in the official government ‘how to use okurigana’ document as one of the exceptions to the general rule that nouns that are derived as inflections of verbs have okurigana that follows the verb, but 仕組み is not”. So 仕組み follows the general rule and has okurigana, but 組 does not.

(The complete list of exceptions is 謡 虞 趣 氷 印 頂 帯 畳 卸 煙 恋 志 次 隣 富 恥 話 光 舞 折 係 掛(かかり) 組 肥 並(なみ) 巻 割.)

The underlying “why” is probably “these have traditionally been written this way and there’s no ‘makes the reading ambiguous’ problem to solve by mandating okurigana”. Pre-war writing system okurigana usage was less standardised and I think there was a wider variety of usage. Even today there are still some words where there is more than one valid way to write it.

The Wikipedia article on okurigana has a reasonable overview of the principles at work here.

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WOW!!!:):):slight_smile: …I was tempted to leave it at that because I think it’s self-explanatory.

But, your explanation deserves my appreciation of your knowledge and effort. Honestly, when I read your explanation, I know I’ve heard of what you’re saying (the conjugations, the forms) but that is ALL way over my head! HOWEVER, I hope to be able to understand all of that someday in the future (as far as it may be from now).

Thanks again!

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Ditto to my response to enbyboiwonder! I REALLY liked your link on okurigana and I bookmarked it for future references! The one example that really struck gold with me was the one with (which akasheila had pointed out as well):
話し (hana-shi ) - to speak
話 (hanashi ) - a story

I wish I could mark your response as a ‘solution’ as well but that option seems to have vanished - I assume because I marked enbyboiwonder as a solution before reading your reply. Sorry :(. If there is a way I can mark your reply as a solution as well, please let me know how and I will!

Thanks again!

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I guess WK should update the page. Most sites list both くみ and く.む for kunyomi.