A contraction from the idiom 埒が明かぬ (rachi ga akanu, “not get up to speed, not get off the ground”, literally “the fence doesn't open”). akanu is an archaic negative form of the verb 明く (aku, “to open, to open up”).
あかん (romaji akan)
- negative form of あく.
- (Kansai) to make little progress; a waste of time
- (Kansai) something that is not good, something that is forbidden
- sake wa akan
- alcohol is forbidden
Commonly used in western Japan, especially the Kansai dialects.
- いけない (ikenai): "doesn't go, cannot go" → inappropriate
- ならない (naranai): "doesn't become" → unbecoming, inappropriate
- 駄目 (dame): no good, bad, stop, don't