海豚

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Chinese[edit]

ocean; sea suckling pig
simp. and trad.
(海豚)

Etymology[edit]

EB1911 - Volume 01 - Page 001 - 1.svg This entry lacks etymological information. If you are familiar with the origin of this term, please add it to the page as described here.

Pronunciation[edit]


Noun[edit]

海豚

  1. dolphin

Japanese[edit]

Japanese Wikipedia has an article on:

Wikipedia ja

Kanji in this term
Grade: 2 Grade: S
Irregular
海豚
Wikipedia has an article on:

Wikipedia

Etymology[edit]

Unclear. One of the more likely theories is that this was originally a compound of Old Japanese elements (iwo, fish) +‎ (uka, food, something used as food).

/iwo uka/ > /iru uka/ > /iruka/

Another possibility is that it was a borrowing from Ainu. Cf. Sakhalin Ainu (i)riku, Kuril Ainu rika 'whale'.[1]

The 海豚 spelling is an example of ateji. The characters literally mean “sea pig”.

Pronunciation[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Noun[edit]

海豚 (hiragana いるか, alternative reading イルカ, romaji iruka)

  1. dolphin (the mammal)

Usage notes[edit]

As with many terms used in biology, this is commonly spelled in katakana, as イルカ.

Derived terms[edit]

See also[edit]

  • ^ Martine Robbeets (2005:190) Is Japanese Related to Korean, Tungusic, Mongolic and Turkic?