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See also: and
U+732B, 猫
CJK UNIFIED IDEOGRAPH-732B

[U+732A]
CJK Unified Ideographs
[U+732C]

Translingual[edit]

Stroke order
11 strokes
Stroke order
(Chinese)
Stroke order
(Japan)
Japanese
Simplified
Traditional

Han character[edit]

(Kangxi radical 94, +8, 11 strokes, cangjie input 大竹廿田 (KHTW), four-corner 44260, composition )

Derived characters[edit]

References[edit]

  • Kangxi Dictionary: page 714, character 27
  • Dai Kanwa Jiten: character 20535
  • Dae Jaweon: page 1127, character 1
  • Hanyu Da Zidian (first edition): volume 2, page 1352, character 1
  • Unihan data for U+732B


Chinese[edit]

Glyph origin[edit]

Phono-semantic compound (形聲形声, OC *mrew) : semantic + phonetic (OC *mrew).

Definitions[edit]

For pronunciation and definitions of – see (“cat; to hide oneself; etc.”).
(This character is the simplified and variant form of ).
Notes:

Japanese[edit]

Japanese Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia ja

Kanji[edit]

(common “Jōyō” kanji)

Readings[edit]

Compounds[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

Kanji in this term
ねこ
Grade: S
kun’yomi

⟨neko1/neko/

From Old Japanese. Cognate with Miyako にか (nika, cat, Tarama and Minna dialects) via unknown Japonic substratum.

A comparison of accent patterns between the dialects shows some confusion (see dialectal data):

  • One group of dialects behaves as if <LF> was the Heian Kyoto accent pattern: many dialects with the Tokyo type accent, including the standard Japanese in Tokyo, pronounce this word with an <HL-L> pitch pattern, and in some non-mainstream Keihan type dialects as well, this word has a corresponding <LF> pitch pattern.
  • Another group of dialects behaves as if <LL> was the Heian Kyoto accent pattern: the mainstream Keihan type dialects pronounce this word with an <HL> pitch pattern, and in a few of the Tokyo type dialects, this word has a corresponding <LH-L> pitch pattern.

As a result, this term is one example of words that have the same pitch accent pattern between Tokyo and Osaka/Kyoto. The confusion seems to be due to an impression that the term comes from a compound word origin.

One theory explains that neko is shortened from earlier (ねこま) (nekoma) (Can this(+) etymology be sourced?), but neko has a first appearance in literature earlier than that for nekoma.

First attested in the Shin'yaku Kegonkyō Ongi Shiki of 794.[1]

Pronunciation[edit]

Dialectal data

Modern dialectal data

Note: The information are extracted per se, in a broad IPA transcription by the author. There may be inaccuracies in the data. For Hachijō and Ryukyuan data, see their corresponding entries.

/ɯ̈/ is a described as a "central vowel", but the precise transcription is unclear.

Data source (unless missing): Hirayama, Teruo (平山 照男); Ōshima Ichirō (大島 一郎); Ōno Masao (大野 眞男); Kuno Makoto (久野 眞); Kuno Mariko (久野 マリ子); Sugimura Takao (杉村 孝夫) (1992-1994) 現代日本語方言大辞典 [Dictionary of Japanese Dialects], Tokyo: Meiji Shoin (明治書院)


Other dialectal data

Ishikawa, Tottori ニコ (niko), Kagoshima ネゴ (nego), Chiba ネコ゚ (ne'ngo), Tokushima ネコー (nekō)[2]


Noun[edit]

(ねこ) or (ネコ) (neko (counter )

  1. [from 794] a cat
    (ねこ)()(ひき)()
    Neko ga nihiki iru.
    There are two cats.
    (いえ)(ねこ)(さんびき)います
    Ie ni wa neko ga sanbiki imasu.
    There are three cats in the house.
    • 794, Shin'yaku Kegonkyō Ongi Shiki:
      猫狸 [...] ニ又漢云野貍、倭言上尼古、下多〻既
      Cat and raccoon dog, [...] both of them are called 野貍 (yari) in Chinese; the former is called 尼古 (⟨neko1 → neko) while the latter is called 多〻既 (⟨tatake2 → tatake) in Japanese.
Usage notes[edit]
  • As with many terms that name organisms, this term is often spelled in katakana, especially in biological contexts (where katakana is customary), as ネコ.
Derived terms[edit]
Idioms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Kanji in this term
ねこま
Grade: S
kun’yomi
Alternative spelling
猫ま

According to the 和名類聚抄 (Wamyō Ruijushō), 931–938, (ねこ) (neko) is short for this word.

938, Minamoto no Shitagō, Wamyō Ruijushō, volume 7, page 56:
猫: 野王案、猫、音苗、禰古麻、下總本有和名二字興河海抄引此合、本草和名同訓、或省云禰古、新撰字鏡、狸、禰古、按狸一名猫、見本草和名、似虎而小、熊捕鼠為糧
Cat. According to Yewang, cat, sound-reading myō, [Japanese reading] nekoma; later compendiums have a two character Japanese name- perhaps the Rivers and Seas Annotations references this compilation, the Honzō wamyō [has] a kun homophone, certain omissions call it 'neko', [in the] Shinsen Jikyō 'tanuki'- [read] neko, to check 'tanuki' [as] one name [for] a cat - see the Honzō wamyō; like a tiger but small, the creature catches rats for food

One theory describes the first mora <ne> as onomatopoeia for the sound a cat makes (cf. にゃ (nya); compare English mew, meow). The last two morae <ko1ma> might accord with (くま) (kuma, bear) if it were from Proto-Japonic *koma (class 2.3 <LL>), in the sense of "four-legged animal". The Heian Kyoto accent of this word is <LHL>; note that in compound words for species names, the pitch pattern may be simplified to <-HL> when the final element is a 2-mora noun (e.g. 青海苔 (aonori, green laver, < àwònórì < *àwò-nòrì), and the presence or absence of this phenomenon could explain the accent confusion in neko. (Can this(+) etymology be sourced?)

However, nekoma is first cited to 918 in the 本草和名 (Honzō Wamyō, the oldest surviving dictionary of medicine in Japan),[5] while neko is first attested in 794.

c. 918, Honzō Wamyō:
家狸、一名猫、和名禰古末
A house raccoon; also called a cat; the Japanese name is nekoma.

Pronunciation[edit]

Dialectal data



Other dialectal data

Gifu (Hida) ねこま (nekoma, a backpack made with the skin or straw of (hinoki, cypress tree))[5][6]


Noun[edit]

(ねこま) (nekoma

  1. [918–???] (obsolete) a cat

References[edit]

  1. ^ Omodaka, Hisataka (1967) 時代別国語大辞典 上代編 [The dictionary of historical Japanese: Old Japanese] (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Sanseidō, →ISBN, page 559
  2. 2.0 2.1 ね‐こ 【猫】”, in 日本国語大辞典 (Nihon Kokugo Daijiten, Nihon Kokugo Daijiten) Paid subscription required[1] (in Japanese), 2nd edition, Tōkyō: Shogakukan, 2000, released online 2007, →ISBN, concise edition entry available here (Note: Dialectal meanings, etymological theories, pronunciation including modern, dialectal, and historical information, Jōdai Tokushu Kanazukai, historical dictionaries containing this word, and the kanji spellings in those dictionaries have been omitted.)
  3. ^ Matsumura, Akira, editor (2006) 大辞林 [Daijirin] (in Japanese), Third edition, Tōkyō: Sanseidō, →ISBN
  4. ^ NHK Broadcasting Culture Research Institute, editor (1998) NHK日本語発音アクセント辞典 [NHK Japanese Pronunciation Accent Dictionary] (in Japanese), Tōkyō: NHK Publishing, →ISBN
  5. 5.0 5.1 ねこ‐ま 【猫─】”, in 日本国語大辞典 (Nihon Kokugo Daijiten, Nihon Kokugo Daijiten) Paid subscription required[2] (in Japanese), 2nd edition, Tōkyō: Shogakukan, 2000, released online 2007, →ISBN, concise edition entry available here (Note: Dialectal meanings, etymological theories, pronunciation including modern, dialectal, and historical information, Jōdai Tokushu Kanazukai, historical dictionaries containing this word, and the kanji spellings in those dictionaries have been omitted.)
  6. ^ ねこ【猫】”, in 日本方言大辞典 (Nihon Hōgen Daijiten, Nihon Hōgen Daijiten) Paid subscription required[3] (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Shogakukan, 1989, released online 2016, →ISBN

Korean[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle Chinese (MC mjew). Recorded as Middle Korean / (myo) (Yale: myo) in Hunmong Jahoe (訓蒙字會 / 훈몽자회), 1527.

Hanja[edit]

Korean Wikisource has texts containing the hanja:

Wikisource

(eumhun 고양이 (goyang'i myo))

  1. Hanja form? of (cat).

Compounds[edit]

References[edit]

  • 국제퇴계학회 대구경북지부 (國際退溪學會 大邱慶北支部) (2007). Digital Hanja Dictionary, 전자사전/電子字典. [4]

Okinawan[edit]

Kanji[edit]

(common “Jōyō” kanji)

Readings[edit]

Compounds[edit]

Noun[edit]

(まやー) (mayā

  1. cat

References[edit]

Yaeyama[edit]

Kanji[edit]

(common “Jōyō” kanji)

Noun[edit]

(まやー) (mayā

  1. cat

Yoron[edit]

Kanji[edit]

(common “Jōyō” kanji)

Noun[edit]

(みゃんか) (myanka

  1. cat