Hiragana (平仮名 or ひらがな) is one of three Japanese syllabary, a component of the Japanese writing system along with Katakana, Kanji, and Romaji. It contains 48 characters. Hiragana and katakana are both kana systems, with the rule that each character represents one mora. Additionally, each kana is either a vowel such as "a" (あ) or a consonant followed by a vowel such as "ka" (か), or "n" (ん).

Hiragana is used for words that have no kanji attached to them, which includes particles such as kara から (meaning "from"), and suffixes such as -san さん. Hiragana is also used in situations where the reader or author does not know the particular kanji for the word, like hiragana is used in preschool and children's books, also a situation where it would be considered too formal for the writing purpose. Adjective and verb inflections (altering a word) are written in hiragana, in this case part of the root is then written in kanji. Hiragana is also commonly used to provide a reading aid in the pronunciation of Kanji, which is called Furigana. There are hiragana characters for wi and we although they aren't used frequently:: ゐ (wi) and ゑ (we).

Basic Hiragana[edit | edit source]

A

I

U

E

O

Ka

Ki

Ku

Ke

Ko

Sa

Shi

Su

Se

So

Ta

Chi

Tsu

Te

To

Na

Ni

Nu

Ne

No

Ha

Hi

Fu

He

Ho

Ma

Mi

Mu

Me

Mo

Ya

Yu

Yo

Ra

Ri

Ru

Re

Ro

Wa

Wi

We

Wo

し、ち、and つ[edit | edit source]

The romaji of these hiragana symbols are written closer to the English pronunciation.

The three last Hiragana[edit | edit source]

Ye[edit | edit source]

Ye is an obselete kana. It has been encoded into Unicode.

[edit | edit source]

を can be sometimes wo but more often used as 'o'

へ can be sometimes wo but more often used as 'e' and is identical to its Katakana counterpart

External links[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

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