Community Web Version Now Available
nooni
why do japanese have two type of alphabets?hiragana and katakana.. which alphabet is used formally and whats differences between them??
Mar 16, 2008 3:33 AM
3
0
Answers · 3
The difference is in use. Hiragana is the standard character set while Katakana is used in more specific ways. Katakana is used mostly for using text to describe sounds (not spoken language) and foreign words (including those adapted into the Japanese vocabulary). They may also be occasionally used to emphasize certain words by the writer or can be used for spelling the names of plants and animals.
March 17, 2008
Mytch is almost right. Hiragana is the standard syllabary. Katakana is used where in English we would use italics. Its other use is for designating "loan" words, e.g words taken from another language. In truth, katakana isn't really necessary and my previous comment about redundancy still stands.
March 22, 2008
Becasue the Japanese are masters in the art of redundancy! That's the only answer that ever made sense to me.
March 16, 2008
nooni
Language Skills
English, Korean, Malay
Learning Language
English, Korean