Monday, November 11, 2019


In Japanese, ten'on 転音, also called boin koutai 母音交替, "vowel change," is a change in pronunciation where the vowel of a morpheme changes in order to connect to another morpheme in a word.

Examples include:
  • fune-ashiあし
    funaashiあし (舟足)
    Boat speed.
  • kaze-kamiかみ
    kazakamiかみ (風上)
  • kami-nagaraながら
    As a god.
    As in the age of gods.
  • ame-kasaかさ
    amagasaがさ (雨傘)
  • sake-taruたる
    sakadaruだる (酒樽)
    Alcohol barrel, cask.
  • ue-ki
    uwagiぎ (上着)
    Outer garment. Coat.
  • ki-tachi たち
    kodachiだち (木立)
    Tree grove.

Note: in the words above, ka becoming ga, ta becoming da, and ki becoming gi consist of a different change in pronunciation called rendaku 連濁.


Changes in Pronunciation

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