アィヌ

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Ainu[edit]

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アイヌ (ainu): three people in traditional Ainu costume, at the Ainu Museum in Shiraoi, Hokkaido.

Alternative forms[edit]

Noun[edit]

アィヌ ‎(aynu)

  1. a person, a human being
  2. the Ainu people
  3. comrade
  4. father, husband, or other adult male

Usage notes[edit]

This spelling is less common than アイヌ.

The Ainu pronunciation of this term has only two morae, so academic materials may spell this term in kana with the small , or in romaji with a y, to explicitly indicate that the initial vowel is the single-mora diphthong ay (/ai̯/), and not the two-mora diphthong a i (/a.i/).

However, there is no three-mora term a i nu in the Ainu language, and most Ainu texts written in katakana use the spelling アイヌ instead.

References[edit]

Batchelor, John (1926) An Ainu-English-Japanese Dictionary, third edition, Tokyo: Kyobunkan