ＨＥＬＬＯ！ Ｉ ＡＭ ＱＵＩＺＢＯ™！I am your Japanese language learning helper, here to assist you and introduce you to new vocabulary to expand your horizons. You may recognise me as the computer robot friend of Kiki and Koko of Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online. I read Japanese words and characters aloud and create quizzes for you to test your skills as well as to practise them. This Word of the Week continues to add onto previous vocabulary which should give an enjoyable set of vernacular to express yourself in mysterious ways. However, there is one more mystery to solve before we continue: What is Word of the Week?
(And, after calculating that we have reached the maximum number of ways to reword this explanation, if you have read this explanation in a previous week, the general idea is the same, though it can still be worth a reminder to motivate you and bolster your reasons for participation. But, if you are short of time or want to dedicate more time to revising or studying instead, you may certainly scroll down to the main segment. I will not mind at all! I am only here to assist in your learning experience.)
During what some may refer to as the ‘before times’, the site had begun as a place where Japanese lessons and articles regarding language and culture were regularly created and uploaded regularly, every Monday and Friday. Though such a consistent flow of information would seem to be enough for other sites, it was clear that there could be even more. For between Monday and Friday was a long gap in which there was no new information being presented. Not only was there a long gap between information, but many would forget to return to revise previous lessons. In learning any language, it is important to be consistent, even if it is only once a day. Thus, Japanese Word of the Week Wednesday was born.
Word of the Week Wednesday not only acts as a great reminder for those who have either missed previous lessons or those who simply require revision, returning to previous lessons and articles, but it also gives just enough new information for students and visitors not to feel overwhelmed. Whether it is simply a quick addition to their vocabulary or studying sentence structure and pronunciation or reading, this segment serves beginners and more advanced learners alike. However, What happens during Word of the Week Wednesday?
During Word of the Week Wednesday, with the assistance of Kiki and Koko, a Japanese word or phrase is chosen and presented to you with the possibility of a bonus word, as well. I provide a definition and other useful information about the vocabulary word, and if applicable, Kiki and Koko provide a helpful hint in using the word or phrase. However, that is not the whole of it. I personally sound out each word or phrase aloud for you to repeat as many times as you wish, and you can ask me to say it as many times as you wish. I will never tire of it, as it is my function.
From there, an example sentence is created. You can not only use the sentence to see how the word is used or to see the definition in action, but you can also use it to practise your reading and writing. You can compose your own sentence based on it; you can use it to see examples of grammar; or you can even use it to learn other adjacent vocabulary. Each sentence is written in a way that is useful to beginners through advanced learners. So, there is something for everyone. And, again, I will be there to read it aloud for you. I can only read it at one speed, so there is no need to repeat after me, but it can still assist you in picking out vocabulary within natural speeds of speech. And, if you would like to know more about how to create your own sentences, be sure to consult the grammar section of the Essentials.
And, now it is time for the essential part of this segment, which is the vocabulary! Kiki and Koko will be joining us in their Helpful Hints segment of this corner to assist in today’s vocabulary as well as some context that may be helpful for the future of your language learning journey.
Without further ado, let us NihonGO!!
Word(s) of the Week:
Na-Adjective(ナ形容詞)、Noun（名詞）, Adverb (副詞)(～と）
1.(adj) mysterious(神秘的); marvelous; wonderful(驚異的); strange(奇妙); miraculous (奇跡的)
2.(noun) (a) mystery; (a) wonder; (a) marvel
jlpt n3| common word (常用語)
Bonus Word(s) of the Week:
Noun (名詞), no-adjective (ノ形容詞)
1.(noun) mystery; enigma; riddle; puzzle
2.(adj) enigmatic; mysterious
jlpt n3| common word (常用語)
※Helpful Hints with Kiki+Koko
We’re your guides to Japanese language and culture from Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online, Kiki and Koko! And, we’re here to demystify today’s mysterious vocabulary! Even native speakers ask the question: 「不思議」と「謎」の違いとは？ーwhich would aptly be asked by an English speaker saying: What is the difference between 「不思議」and「謎」. At first, the two seem very similar, but it’s the nuance that will help you fully understand their context. However, we’ll be sure to keep it concise as to fit with the nature of Word of the Week. If you ever have any indepth questions about it in future, we can always dedicate more time to these sorts of questions in a ‘Your Questions Answered’ segment. But, for now, let’s clear up this mystery of the mysteries.
Though 「不思議」and「謎」both imply mystery or something mysterious, it all comes down to one factor that can be seen in both of their definitions. 「謎」inherently implies a mystery that’s more like a puzzle or riddle, in that it’s something to be solved or figured out. Though the idea of a mystery to be solved as in the genre can be thought of as 「不思議」, 「不思議」implies the nuance of something that isn’t solvable. It doesn’t mean it’s something that can’t be solved, but it doesn’t imply a puzzle or riddle. 「不思議」can be a mystery of the universe, something that, sure, in theory can be ‘solved’, but again, the idea isn’t so much enigmatic as it is implying something is beyond logic and reasoning. And, at the same time, there can be a 「謎」that is a mystery of the universe, implying it’s something that’s meant to be solved or intended to be solved.
So, one way you can think of it that isn’t always so simply put or black and white, 「不思議」is less about reason and logic as it is about marvel and wonder or strangeness and 「謎」implies it’s something to be solved or something that can be solved no matter the difficulty.
We hope that helps!! Until the next lesson!
Thank you, Kiki and Koko! It is certainly mysterious in the way that such subtleties can change the way words are perceived. This can be useful in proper communication, which is what learning a language is ultimately entailing. And, hopefully, this next section will properly communicate those nuances and perhaps will give you a chance to practise making sentences of your own!
The first row is in Japanese with Kanji. The Next row is in hiragana, then romanised using rōmaji with the final row translated into English.
この ふしぎな なぞを とくために てがかりを さがさなきゃ！
kono fushigi na nazo wo toku tame ni tegakari wo sagasanakya!
We have to find a clue to solve this strange mystery!
ふしぎなくらいに、げんごを まなぶのは なぞを とくみたいだと おもう。そして なぞを とくのが だいすき！
fushigi na kurai ni, gengo wo manabu no wa nazo wo toku mitai da to omou. soshite nazo wo toku no ga daisuki!
Oddly enough, I think learning a language is like solving a puzzle. And, I love solving puzzles!
あの不思議くんの言うことは いつも謎のようので、分かりにくい。だが、理解してみることに 興味のある。
あのふしぎくんの いうことは いつも なぞのようので、わかりにくい。だが、りかいしてみることに きょうみのある。
ano fushigikun no iu koto wa itsumo nazo no you no de, wakarinikui. da ga, rikai shitemiru koto ni kyoumi no aru.
That [eccentric bloke] always talks in riddles, so it’s hard to understand. But, I’m interested in trying to understand it.
That is all for today! But, maybe you have not had enough Japanese vocabulary, yet? Perhaps you would like to learn more vocabulary related to today’s vocabulary? Well, maybe you can give this one a go: 🔊Japanese Word(s) of the Week w/ QUIZBO™ | 【秘密】+ BONUS:【噂】(+Helpful Hints with Kiki+Koko). Or maybe you want to experience an even broader range of vocabulary. In which case, you can have a look at our fine selection of segments on the main Word of the Week page. Or, you can be sure you are caught up with the latest with the sidebar link: 今週の単語 | Word of the Week. These segments alone serve as weeks of material. Share these segments with your friends and family who may be interested in broadening their Japanese vocabulary, that is if you would like to spread the knowledge and show the fun things you are learning with us. Be sure to return often to keep your pronunciation properly in check, as well! If you have any questions, feel free to contact us, and we will do our best to assist how we can. We hope to see you at the next lesson!
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