珍しい

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Japanese[edit]

Kanji in this term
めずら
Grade: S
kun'yomi

Etymology[edit]

From classical -na adjective ‎(mezura) + adjectivizing suffix しい ‎(shii).

Ultimately from Old Japanese verb 愛づ ‎(medu, medzu), modern Japanese 愛でる ‎(mederu, to love; to admire, to appreciate).[1][2]

The meaning originally referred to something that was admirable or favorable, something that had value, as an extension of the underlying verb. This meaning is used in the Man'yōshū, dating to the mid-700s. This further extended to indicate something that was rare or unusual in ways that one would find notable or attractive, and this meaning was also already used in the Man'yōshū. Over time, the admirable sense weakened, and the rare sense became dominant.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

珍しい ‎(-i inflection, hiragana めずらしい, romaji mezurashii, historical hiragana めづらしい)

  1. rare, unusual
    このコインは (めずら)しい
    Kono koin wa mezurashii.
    This coin is rare.

Inflection[edit]

References[edit]

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