Thursday, April 4, 2019

"Piercing" in Japanese

WIP: this article is incomplete and might change in the unforeseeable future.
There are various ways to say "piercing" in Japanese.

The word piasu ピアス means "piercing" in the jewelry kind. It's the katakanization of the English verb to "pierce," but it's synonymous with the one for the noun "piercing," piashingu ピアシング. It's abbreviated pi ピ.

It comes after body part words for whatever body part you're piercing. For example:
  • shita piasu 舌ピアス
    shita pi 舌ピ
    Tongue piercing.
  • mimi piasu 耳ピアス
    mimi pi 耳ピ
    Ear piercing.
    • mimikazari 耳飾り
      Earring. "Ear decoration."
    • iaringu イヤリング
      Earring.

The word kantsuu 貫通 means "piercing" in the sense of perforation, "opening a hole."
  • ana wo kantsuu saseru
    穴を貫通させる
    To make a hole open. To perforate a hole.

The jewelry piasu is inserted in holes, so the act of piercing a piercing in Japanese ends up being "to open" a piercing.
  • piasu wo akeru ピアスを開ける
    To open a piercing. To pierce a piercing.
  • piasu no ake ピアスの開け
    The opening of the piercing. The piercing of the piercing.
  • piasu no ake-kata ピアスの開け方
    The method of opening a piercing. How to pierce a piercing.

The word tsuranki 貫き, "piercing," comes from tsuranuku 貫く, "to pierce," "to go through." For example:
  • ya ga yoroi wo tsuranuita
    矢が鎧を貫いた
    The arrow pierced through the armor.

The word sashi 刺し is "piercing" is the "stabbing" sense, from sasu 刺す, "to stab."

A homonym, the word sashi 差し, from sasu 差す, means "piercing" in the sense of rays of light piercing through the dark, or rays of the sun piercing through the forest, and so on.

See also:

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