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Stroke order
Unicode block Hiragana
Codepoint U+306A



Etymology 1[edit]

Derived in the Heian period from writing the 万葉仮名 ‎(man'yōgana) kanji in the cursive 草書 ‎(sōsho) style.


(Hepburn romanization na)

  1. The hiragana syllable ‎(na), whose equivalent in katakana is ‎(na). It is the twenty-first syllable of the gojūon order, and its position in gojūon tables is (NA-gyō, A-dan; “row NA, section A”).
Related terms[edit]
See also[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Probably derived from mild emphatic interjection and sentence-final particle , itself from Old Japanese, indicating a general sense of admiration or consideration, or hope that the preceding statement comes to pass.


‎(romaji na) m

  1. (informal, mild emphatic) Used to get someone's attention. Carries generally neutral or slightly positive connotations.
    Na, kiita kai.
    Hey, did you hear?


‎(romaji na) m

  1. (informal, mild emphatic) Indicates emotion or mild emphasis. Sentence-final.
    sō ka na.
    Huh, is that so.
Usage notes[edit]

Considered less formal than of essentially the same meaning.

Etymology 3[edit]

From Old Japanese. Originally abbreviation of verb なる ‎(naru, to become) used in an attributive role.


‎(romaji na)

  1. The copula particle used after 形容動詞 ‎(keiyōdōshi, adjectival nouns) to make them function as adjectives.
     (へん) (ひと)
    hen na hito
    a strange person
Usage notes[edit]

The full なる ‎(naru) form is still used to impart a more formal, archaic, or poetic sense.

 (しず)なる田舎 (いなか)

shizuka naru inaka
the quiet countryside

Etymology 4[edit]

From Old Japanese. Probably the root na of the negative adjective ない ‎(nai). An alternate theory is that this is the imperfective conjugation of negative auxiliary verb ‎(zu).


‎(romaji na) m

  1. (informal, added after the dictionary form of a verb) Used to indicate prohibition: don't.
    iku na
    Don't go!
    ウィキペディアを引用 (いんよう)する
    wikipedia o in'yō suru na.
    Don't quote Wikipedia.
Usage notes[edit]

Considered very informal and potentially brusque depending on tone of voice. This would never be used in polite conversation, where the construction ~ないで下さい ‎(~naide kudasai) would be used instead, appended to the imperfective stem of the verb in question. Examples:

Sō suru na.
Don't do that.
-- addressing close friends, children, or possibly subordinates.
Sō shinaide kudasai.
(Please) Don't do that.
-- addressing anyone else.

Etymology 5[edit]

Abbreviation of polite imperative auxiliary verb form なさい ‎(nasai).


‎(romaji na)

  1. (informal, added after the stem form of a verb) An imperative or command: do.
    あっちへ ()、ぼうや。
    atchi e ikina, bōya.
    Go over there, boy → Get out of the way, boy!
    suwarina yo.
    SitHave a seat.
Usage notes[edit]

A casual way of issuing commands. Not as rough as the imperative conjugation of a verb. Usage restricted to addressing friends, children, or subordinates.



Roughly in order of politeness:

Etymology 6[edit]

The hiragana rendering of various other words.


‎(romaji na)

  1. : A name.
  2. : Fish as a food, particularly as a side dish.
  3. : Greens as a food, particularly as a side dish.
  4. : A side dish, be it meat or fish or greens.
  5. : A lack of something.
  6. : Driving away the gods of disease.


‎(romaji na)

  1. : Seven.


‎(romaji na)

  1. , : (obsolete) The first-person personal pronoun: I, me; the second-person personal pronoun: you.