Do you find Japanese language difficult to learn? Don’t worry you are not the only person who think so. Many native Japanese think the same when they learn English. This is because Japanese language is very different from English as the Japan archipelago is so far away from England.
But there is one thing common between Japanese and English. Both languages have two ways of expressing one thing.
In Japanese, the Sun can be said in either “Taiyo”, or “Hi”. The sea is “Kai” or “Umi”. Horse is “Ba” or “Uma”. God is “Shin” or “Kami”. The former is the expression based on Chinese character we introduced in 6th and 7th century, and the latter is native Japanese which we have been using for many thousands of years.
Like so, in English, The sun is also solar. The sea is also ocean and marine. Pig’s meat is pork. Space is universe and cosmos. This happened because English introduced many Latin words during The Norman conquest occurred in the early 11th century.
In addition to the above, English brought vocabularies also from the Greek for academic purposes, and Japanese imported a lot of the Western words mainly English after the Meiji restoration of the late 19th century.
It may be interesting for you to know that a few words came to Japan together with Portuguese and Spanish missionary in 16th century. Just to pick up a few, Japanese words like Tempura, Tabako, Orugan, Koppu, Pan, Karameru are originally either Portuguese or Spanish.
It is sure that Japanese is very complicated language. But, did you know that learning foreign language makes your brain smart? And if the 2nd language you are learning today has a greater distance from your own language, like Japanese, the effect from learning it is going to be great.
As you study a foreign language like Japanese, you are automatically activating your brain up to the maximum level, because you are now using the unused portion of the brain. Look! your nerve cells are dancing Tango. You need to pump up a lot of blood into the most important part of your body.
Happy brain building!