良い

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Japanese[edit]

Kanji in this term
Grade: 4

Etymology 1[edit]

Modern form of Old Japanese adjective よし (yoshi).[1][2][3]

/josi//joi/

Pronunciation[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Adjective[edit]

良い (-i inflection, hiragana よい, romaji yoi)

  1. good
Inflection[edit]
Derived terms[edit]
Usage notes[edit]

Most often written in hiragana. The kanji spelling is generally reserved for more formal writing.

Suffix[edit]

良い (hiragana よい, romaji -yoi)

  1. easy
Usage notes[edit]

Most often written in hiragana. The kanji spelling is generally reserved for more formal writing.

Attaches to the 連用形 (ren'yōkei, continuative or stem form) of a verb. Example:

  • 読み良い — よみよいyomiyoieasy to read

However, in modern Japanese, the adjective 安い, 易い (yasui, easy, easygoing) is more commonly used to express this meaning.

Etymology 2[edit]

Phonetic shift from the Old Japanese yoshi form of yoi above. Already in use as early as the Nihon Shoki, circa 720.[1][2][3] This form is now obsolete, though it may still be found in some dialects.

/joɕi//eɕi//ei/

Pronunciation[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Adjective[edit]

良い (-i inflection, hiragana えい, romaji ei)

  1. (obsolete) good

Etymology 3[edit]

Phonetic shift from ei above. This is now the most common form used in casual spoken Japanese.[1][2][3]

/ei//ii/

Pronunciation[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Adjective[edit]

良い (-i inflection, hiragana いい, romaji ii)

  1. (colloquial, informal) good
Derived terms[edit]
Usage notes[edit]

Most often written in hiragana. The kanji spelling is generally reserved for more formal writing.

The ii form does not inflect — it is only used in the 終止形 (shūshikei, terminal form) and 連体形 (rentaikei, attributive form) of ii. All other grammatical forms are based on the yoi form above. Compare the 連用形 (ren'yōkei, continuative or adverbial form) yoku or the 過去形 (kakokei, past tense) yokatta: there is no *iku or *ikatta form.

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 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 2.4 2006, 大辞林 (Daijirin), Third Edition (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Sanseidō, ISBN 4-385-13905-9
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 1995, 大辞泉 (Daijisen) (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Shogakukan, ISBN 4-09-501211-0
  4. 4.0 4.1 1998, NHK日本語発音アクセント辞典 (NHK Japanese Pronunciation Accent Dictionary) (in Japanese), Tōkyō: NHK, ISBN 978-4-14-011112-3