言わん方無し

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Japanese[edit]

Kanji in this term
Grade: 2 Grade: 2 Grade: 4

Etymology[edit]

/ipan kata nasi/ → /iɸan kata nasi/ → /iwan kata nasi/. iwan is a contraction of iwamu, from the verb 言う (iu, to say) in irrealis form (iwa) plus the subjective particle (mu).

Alternative forms[edit]

Idiom[edit]

言わん方無し (hiragana いわんかたなし, rōmaji iwan kata nashi, historical hiragana いはんかたなし)

  1. there are no words to describe it
    • 1008-1010: Murasaki Shikibu Nikki
      秋のけはひ入たつままに、土御門殿の有さま、いはむ方なくをかし。
    • 1832-33: Shunshoku Umegoyomi (volume 1)
      [...]人品賎しからねども、薄命なる人なりけん、貧苦にせまる其うへに、此ほど病の床にふし、不自由いわん方もなき、容体もときの吉不詳[...]

References[edit]

  • Hasegawa, Masaharu; Yūichirō Imanishi, Hiroshi Itō, Hiroshi Yoshioka (1989) Shin Nihon Koten Bungaku Taikei 24: Tosa Nikki, Kagerō Nikki, Murasaki Shikibu Nikki, Sarashina Nikki, Tōkyō: Iwanami Shoten, →ISBN
  • Nakamura, Yukihiko (1968) Nihon Koten Bungaku Taikei 64: Shunshoku Umegoyomi, Tōkyō: Iwanami Shoten, →ISBN