海豚

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Chinese[edit]

simpl. and trad.

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
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/

However, Murayama proposes that it was a borrowing from Ainu iriku 'whale'.

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, katakana イルカ, romaji iruka)

  1. a 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]