Quest For Japan Logo-Ver7

Basic Japanese : Trivia about numbers in Japanese

Date Published: Last Update:2015/05/22 Others , , , , , ,

The final post about numbers in Japanese.

Number over quadrillion

Numbers over “chou” (trillion to quadrillion) are quite rarely used.
You may hear the following unit “kei” sometimes, but numbers over the unit “kei” won’t be seen in usual life.
I’ve never seen it myself even in the news and I actually can’t name units over “kei”.
I know that there are units called “nayuta”, “fukashigi” and “muryoutaisuu”, although I’m not sure what numbers these units are used.

Ten quadrillion to ten quintillion

Kei

From “10,000,000,000,000,000” to “10,000,000,000,000,000,000”, the unit called “kei” is used.
The Kanji character for the unit is the same as the one for “kyo” in “Kyoto”, a famous Japanese city.

  • Ten quadrillion is assumingly “ikkei”, the combination of “ichi” and “kei”.
  • Hundred quadrillion is “jikkei” : “jyuu” (ten) and “kei”.
    Same as “chou” unit, ten numbers and the unit “kei” together become “jikkei”.
  • Quintillion is “hyakkei” : “hyaku” (hundred) and “kei”.
    Like “jikkei”, the combination of hundred numbers and “kei” is pronunced as “hyakkei”.
    Three quintillion is “san byakkei” : “san” (three), “hyaku” and “kei”.
    Six quintillion is “roppyakkei” : “roku” (six), “hyaku” and “kei”.
    Eight quintillion is “happyakkei” : “hachi” (eight), “hyaku” and “kei”.
  • Ten quintillion is “sen kei” : “sen” (thousand) and “kei”.

Infinite

Mugendai

Not exactly a number, but you may hear the word more often than the unit “kei”.
It’s “mugendai” in Japanese, consisted of three Kanji characters.
The first Kanji is pronounced as “mu”, a little similar to English “me” sound in “home”.
It means “nothing”.
The second one is “gen”, the combination of “ghe” in “ghetto” and “n” sound.
Meaning “limit”.
The last one is “dai”, perhaps almost the same as “di” in “dine”.
It means “large”, “huge” or “big”.

Altogether, the word literally means “limitless large”.

Kanji characters for one, two, three and ten in the financial deeds

In the financial deeds, different Kanji characters are used for one, two, three and ten.
It’s because Kanji for “one, two, three and ten” can be easily altered.
The Kanji for “one” is one horizontal line, “two” is two lines, “three” is three lines and ten is cross-shaped (one horizontal line and one vertical line).
If you add one or two lines to the Kanji for “one” tactfully, some people may be decieved that the written number is two, three or ten.
Or, even if you are innocent, you might get suspected whether you falsified a number.

For those numbers in the financial deeds, it is regulated by law to use different Kanji, which is called as “dai-ji” (lit. big characters), instead of common Kanji, to avoid confusion.
There are also different characters for other numbers like four, but most of them are rarely seen.

One

One in Japanese
The middle character is used for Japanese ten-thousand-yen banknote.

Japanese 10000 yen Banknote

- Japanese 10,000 yen note -

Two

Two in Japanese

Three

Three in Japanese

Ten

Ten in Japanese

Percentage in Japanese

Wari

In Japan, the unit “wari” is frequently used as well as “%” (pronounced as “paasento” in Japanese) for rate.
“100%” is equal to “jyuu (ten) wari”, so “ichi (one) wari” is “10%”.

When you go to shops in Japan, you sometimes see this character with another Kanji “hiki”.
Wari-biki
“Hiki” means “subtract” in this case, and its pronunciation becomes “biki” after “wari”.
“Wari-biki” means “discount”.
When a number is prefixed the word, it means “number * 10% off”.
“Ni (two) wari-biki” is “20% off”.

For “50% off”, the word “han-gaku” is more often used than “50 wari-biki”.
Hangaku
“Han” means “half” and “gaku” means “quantity (usually of money)”.
“Han-gaku” means “half price”.

“Bu” and “Rin”

Bu
For the smaller rate than “wari”, the unit “bu” is used.
“Jyuu (ten) bu” is “ichi (one) wari”.

Rin
“Rin” is a smaller unit of rate than “bu”.
“Jyuu rin” is “ichi bu”.

“Bu” means tenth part of the standard unit in general.
“Rin” is hundredth part.
The standard unit for the rate is “wari”.
“Ichi wari” is “10%”, so “ichi bu” is “1%”.
“Ichi rin” is “0.1%”.

These “bu” and “rin” are very rarely heard now except for batting average or in the phrase “ku-bu ku-rin”.
For batting average “0.321”, we say “San (three) wari ni (two) bu ichi rin“.

Both “ku” in “ku-bu ku-rin” means “nine”, and it means “almost (perfect)” or “nearly (certain)”.
Ku-bu ku-rin
“Ku-bu ku-rin” is just “ichi rin” less than “jyuu bu”.
So, the phrase is similar to “99%” in its meaning.

* When expressing time, the Kanji characters for “jyuu bu” are read as “jippun”.
See my previous post.

Counting every two number to ten

We Japanese often count like 2-4-6-8-10, saying “nii, shii, roo, yaa, too”.
Pronunciations are similar to English “knee, sea, law, yeah, toe”.
Some (including me) say “haa” (prolonging English “huh”) instead of “yaa” for eight.

 

Related posts:
#Numbers (1: General one to ten)
(2: Minor one to ten)
(3: Eleven to hundred)
(4: Large numbers)

#Japanese Alphabet (1: “Gojyuu-on” and “iroha-uta”)
(2: Out-of-use characters)
(3: First half of “iroha-uta”)
(4: Second half of “iroha-uta”)

#“I” in Japanese (1) (2) (3)

#Japanese honorific titles (1:Formal) (2:Casual) (3:In text) (4:Business titles)

The following two tabs change content below.

kara

A Japanese living in Okayama. A proud "Otaku"! Loves animals, snacks, manga, games (PC, iPad, Nintendo DS, PSP), foreign TV dramas, traveling and football (soccer).

Sponsored Links

  • Pocket
  • 1 follow us in feedly

Related Article/s:

Go-chisou sama!

Basic Japanese : “Go-chisou sama” – Phrase after meal

Go-chisou sama (deshita) This phrase is said after meal. It expresses appreciation to people who prepared or cooked the meal. “Chisou” literally means “running around”. The Kanji character for “chi” means “run fast” or “travel fast on horseback / by car”. The “sou” character means “run”. People used to run around (or ride around on […]

Read Article

Vowing Man

Basic Japanese : “Sumimasen” – “Thank you” in Japanese

“Thank you” in Japanese other than “Arigatou” “Arigatou (gozai masu)” is the common phrase, but there are other phrases for “Thank you” in Japanese. Sumimasen The phrase is also very common and frequently heard in Japan. (Maybe more often used than “Arigatou”). This has several meanings : “I’m sorry.” “Excuse me.” “Thank you (and I’m […]

Read Article

Hyaku

Basic Japanese : Numbers in Japanese from eleven to hundreds (and Zero)

Numbers in Japanese : Zero and over ten to hundreds Zero and from 11 to 999. Zero in Japanese “Zero” or “Rei”. “Zero” from English, and “Rei” from Chinese. The pronunciation of “rei” is almost the same as English “lay”. Both are very commonly used, and generally considered as the same meaning. In fact, they […]

Read Article

daiso japan

Go Shopping at a 100 Yen Shop

I’m sure many of those who have been to Japan would agree that one of the places that got them spend money are 100 yen shops. These are shops that sell items that mostly cost 100 yen exclusive of tax. The items range from food to housewares to accessories, or in other words, there’s a […]

Read Article

Akatsuki no Yona

Basic Japanese : Formal Japanese honorific titles

At first, I was going to write about how to say “you” in Japanese, but the most common “you” word is a person’s name usually with suffix like “san”, “kun”, or “chan”. (ex. Hanako-san) This way of calling is used as third person as well. In this post, I’m trying to explain the variants and […]

Read Article

Kitano Tenman-guu 2

Go west : Tenman-guu to console Michizane

“Kitano Tenman-guu” in Kyoto to console Michizane In 942, Michizane’s spirit showed up before a girl from a poor family in Kyoto and ordered to build a shrine for him in “Ukon no baba” (“hippodrome controlled by the right guard office”), the place where he often visited during his life. Of course she didn’t have […]

Read Article

On-chuu

Basic Japanese : Japanese honorific titles in text

Many of Japanese honorific titles in text are the same as ones in speech. However, “sama” or “dono” is much more often used in text, especially for address. Maybe it’s because a writer is in the distance. In a letter, use the same title as one in speech. When I write a letter to my […]

Read Article

Samurai

Basic Japanese : Historical “I” in Japanese

Old-fashioned / historical “I” in Japanese The following “I” pronouns are well-known and can be quite often heard / seen in historical stories especially those which are set in the Edo period. But, these are rarely used in the present time. Neutral [Temae] “Temae” literally means “before hand(s)”. The near side of someone / something. […]

Read Article

Masakado

Mystery tour: Taira no Masakado – Part 1 –

Roll up for the mystery tour! This one can be categorized as an urban legend as well. Masakado no Kubi-zuka (The burial mound for Masakado’s head)   Quick History Taira no Masakado is said to be one of the Big Three Onryou (vengeful spirit) in Japan. There are some novels about Masakado, and “Teito Monogatari” […]

Read Article

Mister Karl

Basic Japanese : How to say “I” in Japanese – Part 2 –

General, but not very often used “I” in Japanese Several first-person singular pronouns for common people, only used by some. Neutral [Jibun] “Jibun” means “oneself”. Can be used by anybody according to circumstances, but I guess few common people use this as a usual pronoun for themselves. Maybe male athletes often use this, especially in […]

Read Article

Sponsored Links

Leave a Reply

Sponsored Links

  • Google+
    InstagramInstagram
PAGE TOP ↑