三味線

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Chinese[edit]

three; 3 taste
 
thread; string; wire; line
trad. (三味線)
simp. (三味线) 线

Pronunciation[edit]


Noun[edit]

三味線

  1. shamisen

See also[edit]


Japanese[edit]

Japanese Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia ja
Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia
三味線 (shamisen, samisen): a street performer playing a shamisen.

Etymology 1[edit]

Kanji in this term
さん > しゃ
Grade: 1

Grade: 3
せん
Grade: 2
on'yomi

Originally from Okinawan 蛇皮線 ‎(jabisen, literally snakeskin strings), so named for the way the soundbox is traditionally covered in snakeskin. The traditional jabisen instrument was imported into the Sakai area of Osaka during the 永禄 ‎(Eiroku) era (1558-1570), then later modified by biwa luthiers to have the square-shaped shamisen soundbox of today.[1][2]

The reading jabisen shifted over time to jamisen (蛇味線), replacing the ‎(bi, skin, leather) character with ‎(mi) for phonetic reasons (i.e. as ateji). Then jabisen changed to shamisen, replacing the ‎(ja, snake) character with ‎(usually read san, three) for semantic reasons (i.e. as jukujikun). The sha reading for the character is irregular.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

三味線 ‎(hiragana しゃみせん, romaji shamisen)

  1. (music) a shamisen: a Japanese stringed instrument played by plucking, vaguely similar to a banjo
Synonyms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Kanji in this term
さん > さ
Grade: 1

Grade: 3
せん
Grade: 2
on'yomi

Sound shift from shamisen above, possibly influenced by the standard san reading of the initial character.

This reading appears to be less common than shamisen.[1][2]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

三味線 ‎(hiragana さみせん, romaji samisen) (rare)

  1. (music) a shamisen: a Japanese stringed instrument played by plucking, vaguely similar to a banjo

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1988, 国語大辞典(新装版) (Kokugo Dai Jiten, Revised Edition) (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Shogakukan
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2006, 大辞林 (Daijirin), Third Edition (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Sanseidō, ISBN 4-385-13905-9