3 Replies ・ Started by krbrower at 2019-04-25 16:53:26 UTC ・ Last reply by Leebo at 2019-04-30 02:02:03 UTC

Meaning of the hyphen "-" in readings

Some of the readings are prefixed with a "-" while other similar ones are not. For example, "大" (large, big) lists "おお.きい" (big, large) and "-おお.いに" (very, much, greatly). What is the significance of the hyphen? I looked up this word in other dictionaries and they do not include the hyphen. I thought that maybe it signified that the word was typically found at the end of a compound word, but in the example sentences 大いに (read as おおいに), did not appear to be a suffix or part of a compound. [e.g. 彼女は自分の娘を大いに自慢している。]

Can anyone enlighten me about these grammatical forms, or direct me to a place that describes the symbols used by Jisho to convey usage and meaning? Thanks! - Keith

Leebo at 2019-04-26 00:19:12 UTC

It's entirely possible it's just a mistake, but I'll see if I can find anything.

I wouldn't put any weight in any example sentences, because they are just automatically pulled over from the site Tatoeba, where anyone can contribute sentences, and they aren't necessarily trying to match them up with Jisho or anything.

krbrower at 2019-04-29 21:50:17 UTC

The hyphen appears as part of far too many readings on Jisho to simply be a mistake. For example: 日 (-か); 人 (-り); 大 (おお-) and (-おお.いに); 出 (-で); 上 (-うえ) and (うわ-); 金 (かな-) and (-がね); 立 (-た.つ) and (た.ち-); 手 (て-), (-て) and (た-).... and so on. It sometimes appears in front of a reading and sometimes after the reading. In an English dictionary a hyphen might signify a prefix, suffix or combining form. Based on the examples I've looked up, the use of the hyphen in Jisho doesn't seem to have been added for that purpose, and with my limited understanding of Japanese grammar, I was not able to determine an obvious reason for it. I tried looking through the database definition for answers, but so far haven't come across a reason for the hyphens. Thanks.

Leebo at 2019-04-30 02:02:03 UTC

I meant that it could be a mistake for it to be used in this particular instance. All those other ones make sense and have loads of words where those readings are used as prefixes or suffixes. This one doesn't seem to be that way.

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