7 Replies ・ Started by ItsCheif at 2020-12-14 03:51:32 UTC ・ Last reply by ItsCheif at 2020-12-17 01:48:26 UTC
This is a discussion about 上げる

Aren't these 4 different words

If I write "この本をあげる", it has a different meaning to "この本を上げる/挙げる/揚げる". So aren't all 4 of these different words instead of all stemming from 上げる but with 27 different meanings?

Leebo at 2020-12-14 03:56:40 UTC

There is one word, あげる, and it has many meanings. It can be written in several different ways. You would find all of these meanings and ways of writing them under one entry in a monolingual dictionary. Jisho is just set up to display one way of presenting it in kanji in the header, but that is never meant to be a suggestion that it is the "main" way or anything. The individual meanings all have their specific notes for if they are usually written with a particular kanji or with no kanji, etc.

ItsCheif at 2020-12-16 01:29:18 UTC

I see, Thanks @Leebo! I thought it was more like the Kanji determined whether it was a separate word or not, not the pronunciation. The more you know!

ItsCheif at 2020-12-16 01:30:26 UTC

Hmm, actually, about that. Why isn't Kami listed as one word then? https://jisho.org/search/kami

Leebo at 2020-12-16 05:32:30 UTC

Those are all different words that just happen to be pronounced "kami." It's a different situation. In the case of "ageru" it is one word with many meanings. Linguists can tell this kind of thing from how the words developed over time. Also, not all of the "kami" words have the same pronunciation.

髪 and 紙 are kaMI but 神 is KAmi. Different pitch accents.

Leebo at 2020-12-16 05:41:49 UTC
Leebo at 2020-12-16 05:47:40 UTC

Also, remember that Japanese was a spoken language with no writing before kanji were imported from China. They borrowed many Chinese pronunciations and adapted them to the Japanese pronunciation scheme (on'yomi). They also assigned kanji to existing Japanese words and expressed nuances with different kanji. So while あげる (to raise) and あげる (to fry) come from the same original word, the different usages can be expressed with different kanji to make things clearer for a reader.

ItsCheif at 2020-12-17 01:48:26 UTC

Awesome, thank you very much for sharing!

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