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Welcome to - Lesson Japanese Writing Katakana Part 3

We have come to lesson six in the Anime Vice Japanese Lessons and it's also the finale to the Japanese lessons in writing. After this, we can finally start to cover whole words then on to sentences. For all the comments the first lesson got. The following haven't been commented on much at all. Just so you know, If you are interested in these lessons. The only way I know that is if you post a comment. If users aren't interested and enjoying these. I don't see why I should keep these going if no one is reading.
 
 
Seems as if I added a lot looking at this list, but it's mostly the modifiers and we will be covering those in a bit. Once you understand the modifiers it all makes sense. Firstly, let's finish up the writing Katakana lessons with the R-Base characters.

R Base

(In the graphs. You will see how to write each of the characters. The red dot marks where you are to begin your strokes.)
 
The R bases of Katakana are often used to replace L sounds in other languages. Here you might notice that the リ(Ri) in Katakana is identical to the り (Ri) for Hiragana.

Rare W Base

These two are extremely rare Katakana characters that you are not going to see much. Many Japanese characters. My Nintendo DS game of My Japanese Coach didn't even have these in the lessons for writing. The only time I've seen the ヱ (We) character was in the Japanese writing for the Evangelion Rebuilds.

That's it, you have now completed the Katakana class. There are 46 base kana in hiragana, but that is hardly enough to make up a whole language and sounds. Next we are going to cover some certain modifiers.
 

Dakuten & Handakuten


 Dakuten Example
 Dakuten Example

Dakuten

There are times when in Japanese the same character appears but will have a different sounds. The first example is called a Dakuten (sometimes referred to as a "ten ten"). They are easy to spot since they look like little quotation marks next to the hiragana. Adding this to the Ka character would now make it pronounced as Ga. These changes follow a specific pattern.

 With Dakuten Added:
  • The K Base will all be G Base
  • The S Base will be Z Base (with the exception of Shi will be Ji)
  • The T Base will all be D Base
  • The H Base will all be B Base
 
The B base versions are will often be used in replacing the V sounds when trying to translate foreign languages. We see it in the name of Princess Vivi. Her name is spelled as ビビ (bibi).

 Handakuten Example
 Handakuten Example

Handakuten

Another modifying mark that is similar to the Dakuten is call the Handakuten (sometimes referred to as a "maru" or "circle"). Unlike the Dakuten where the sound in the syllable can vary. This mark will always mean the character starts with a P sound.
  
The Handakuten isn't as widely used as the Dakuten. It is only used with the H Base kana to make them P Base, as seen in the image example below.

 With Handakuten Added:
  • Ha becomes Pa
  • Hi becomes Pi
  • Fu becomes Pu
  • He becomes Pe
  • Ho becomes Po


Small Kana Modifiers

There are times when Kana are added to words in order to alter the way a word is pronounced. Similar to how it was done in Hiragana, these are seen as small Katakana written directly after a regular sized one.

Small Tsu Modifier

The small ツ (tsu) kana is a popular one you are going to be seeing quite a bit of in Japanese writing. When writing this, it means that you are to extend the consonant of whatever character comes after it. In the case of writing the word for big would be ビッグ (biggu), the ビ (bi) comes directly after the small ツ (tsu).
Another example would be to look to the Japanese word for "school". 

Examples:
EnglishRomajiKana
bigbiggu
ビッグ
redreddo
レッド
bed
beddo
ベッド

Dash Modifier

The Dash modifier is one that is unique to the Katakana. It basically just looks like a vertical line that follows a kana. It means that you are to extend the vowel sound that the dash follows. An example would be in the Japanese spelling for the word Game. It would be spelled as such, ゲーム.  Notice that just before the dash is a  ゲ (ge). When in Romaji is would look like geemu. Pronounce it out as it would sound like you are saying "game".
 
Often times when the dash is seen at the end of a word. It can replaces for when a word ens in a R. You see this in the Japanese spelling of the One Piece character Chopper (チョッパー, choppaa), and you would see it in the Japanese spelling of my own name Kristoffer (クリストファー, kurisutofaa).

Examples:
EnglishRomajiKana
game
geemu
ゲーム
card
kaado
カード
donor
donaa
ドナー
start
sutaato
スタート
key
kii
キー

Vowel Base Modifiers

Here are a list of more modifiers you are likely to see. These are similar to the small tsu modifier since they are smaller version of another kana that are places after a larger kana. These are used to alter the way the character is pronounced when trying to spell out foreign words. Some are going to be more rare than others. You might of seen these before in anime characters names such as Luffy (ルフィ, rufi). One of the more peculiar cases in the is for the characters of the V sounds in the second row. That is actually the Katakana for ウ (U) with a Dakuten. Add a Dakuten to the ウ (U) and you get ヴ (Vu)
  
Many of these I believe are more helpful for Japanese when translating Chinese characters.

aiueo
ウァ
wa
ウィ
wi
(ウゥ)
wu
ウェ
we
ウォ
wo
(ヷ) ヴァ
va
(ヸ) ヴィ
vi

vu
(ヹ) ヴェ
ve
(ヺ) ヴォ
vo
(クヮ) クァ
kwa
クィ
kwi
クゥ
kwu
クェ
kwe
クォ
kwo
(グヮ) グァ
gwa
グィ
gwi
グゥ
gwu
グェ
gwe
グォ
gwo



シェ
she




ジェ
je




チェ
che

ツァ
tsa
ツィ
tsi

ツェ
tse
ツォ
tso

ティ
ti
トゥ
tu



ディ
di
ドゥ
du


ファ
fa
フィ
fi

フェ
fe
フォ
fo
(スヮ) スァ
swa
スィ
si
スゥ
swu
スェ
swe
スォ
swo
(ズヮ) ズァ
zwa
ズィ
zi
ズゥ
zwu
ズェ
zwe
ズォ
zwo
テァ
tha

テゥ
thu
テェ
tye
テォ
tho
デァ
dha

デゥ
dhu
デェ
dye
デォ
dho
(トヮ) トァ
twa
トィ
twi

トェ
twe
トォ
two
(ドヮ) ドァ
dwa
ドィ
dwi

ドェ
dwe
ドォ
dwo

ヒィ
hyi

ヒェ
hye


ビィ
byi

ビェ
bye


ピィ
pyi

ピェ
pye

(ホヮ) ホァ
hwa
ホィ
hwi
ホゥ
hu
ホェ
hwe
ホォ
hwo
(ムヮ) ムァ
mwa
ムィ
mwi
ムゥ
mwu
ムェ
mwe
ムォ
mwo
(ヌヮ) ヌァ
nwa
ヌィ
mwi
ヌゥ
nwu
ヌェ
nwe
ヌォ
nwo

リィ
ryi

リェ
rye


Ya, Yu, & Yo Modifiers

These modifiers are not seen as often as the small ツ (tsu) and the rare vowel modifiers, but they will appear far more often. They are just more complicated, but written basically the same way. They are smaller versions that are written after a regular kana. 


Examples:
EnglishRomajiKana
candlekyandoru
キャンドル
shy
shai
シャイ
gamble
gyanburu
ギャンブル

Other Ya, Yu, & Yo Base Modifiers

As before, here is a list of modifiers using the small kana of Ya Yu and Yo. Not see often at all, but still helpful to know.

yayuyo
ウャ
wya
ウュ
wyu
ウョ
wyo
ヴャ
vya
ヴュ
vyu
ヴョ
vyo
テャ
tya
テュ
tyu
テョ
tyo
デャ
dya
デュ
dyu
デョ
dyo
フャ
fya
フュ
fyu
フョ
fyo
スャ
sya
スュ
syu
スョ
syo
ズャ
zya
ズュ
zyu
ズョ
zyo

This was a pretty complicated lesson, but once we get all these writing lessons out the of the way. We can start handling deeper lessons.

Complete Katakana Chart

If you would like to have a print out of all these Katakana. Go HERE to download the full sized version to print out.
 

Test Sheets

To help you learn the characters and test your own knowledge. I created images for you to print out and test yourself on knowing or remembering the These Japanese characters. In the selections below you can download the full sized versions and print them out. They are the kana charts for both Hiragana and Katakana. Only one section is missing for you to fill in the blank. I made one sheet that had no characters on it so you could practice writing any of the types of characters you wished. Testing yourself really does help one remember these.

Full Size Hiragana Test Sheet: HERE
 
Full Size Katakana Test Sheet: HERE
 
Blank Test Sheet: HERE


Next Lesson: Names - Japanese & Foreign Names
 
Back to Lesson Guide: HERE

-Kristoffer Remmell ( FoxxFireArt) is a freelance graphic artist, writer, and over all mystery geek.- Follow for lesson updates: @ animevice / @ FoxxFireArt
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