How to Say the Months, Days, and Seasons in Japanese

There is no capitalization in Japanese. Months are basically numbers (1 through 12) + gatsu, which means, literally, “month” in English. So, to say the months of the year, you generally say the number of the month, followed by gatsu. But, there are exceptions: Pay attention to April, July, and September. April is shi-gatsu, not yon-gatsu, July is shichi-gatsu, not nana-gatsu, and September is ku-gatsu, not kyuu-gatsu.

The audio files in the lists below provide verbal guides on how to pronounce the months, days, and seasons in Japanese. Click the link for each Japanese word, phrase or sentence to hear the correct pronunciation.

The Months in Japanese

For this list of months, the English name of the month is printed on the left, followed by the romaji, or transliteration into English letters of the Japanese word for the month, followed by the name of the month written with Japanese letters. To hear the pronunciation of the month in Japanese, click the link for the transliteration of the month, underlined in blue.

MonthJapaneseCharacters
Januaryichi-gatsu一月
Februaryni-gatsu二月
Marchsan-gatsu三月
Aprilshi-gatsu四月
Maygo-gatsu五月
Juneroku-gatsu六月
Julyshichi-gatsu七月
Augusthachi-gatsu八月
Septemberku-gatsu九月
Octoberjuu-gatsu十月
Novemberjuuichi-gatsu十一月
Decemberjuuni-gatsu十二月

The Days of the Week in Japanese

As with the section above, detailing how to pronounce the months, in this section, you can learn how to say the days of the week in Japanese. The name of the day is printed in English on the left, followed by the transliteration in Japanese, followed by the day written with Japanese letters. To hear how a specific day is pronounced in Japanese, click the link for the transliteration, which is underlined in blue.

DayJapaneseCharacters
Sundaynichiyoubi日曜日
Mondaygetsuyoubi月曜日
Tuesdaykayoubi火曜日
Wednesdaysuiyoubi水曜日
Thursdaymokuyoubi木曜日
Fridaykinyoubi金曜日
Saturdaydoyoubi土曜日

It’s important to know key phrases if you plan to visit Japan. The question below is written in English, followed by the transliteration in Japanese, followed by the question written in Japanese letters. 

What day is it today?

Kyou wa nan youbi desu ka.

今日は何曜日ですか。

The Four Seasons in Japanese

In any language, it’s helpful to know the names of the seasons of the year. As in the previous sections, the names of the seasons, as well as the words, “four seasons,” are printed on the left, followed by the transliteration in Japanese, followed by the names of the seasons written in Japanese letters. To hear the pronunciation of a particular season in Japanese, click the link words for the transliteration, which are underlined in blue.

SeasonJapaneseCharacters
four seasonsshiki四季
Springharu
Summernatsu
Autumnaki
Winterfuyu

It’s interesting to note that kisetsu means “season” or “the season” in Japanese, as noted in this sentence. For example, to ask: Which season do you like best? You would say:

  • Dono kisetsu ga ichiban suki desu ka.  > どの季節が一番好きですか。

Yet, “four seasons” has its own word in Japanese,shiki, as noted above. This is just one of the many ways in which Japanese differs from English—but it provides a fascinating look at how these Western and Eastern cultures even describe something as basic as the four seasons differently.

Source: https://www.thoughtco.com/how-to-say-the-months-and-days-in-japanese-2028134

Learn Japanese

Hiragana

Hiragana is the first of the three Japanese alphabets to learn. Hiragana is a phonetic alphabet, where each character represents a syllable. Hiragana is generally the first of the alphabets used, and is used for many purposes. Until one broadens their knowledge of kanji, they can use hiragana in place of the kanji they don’t know. Additionally, hiragana is used as particles, and is also used as accompanying characters to verbs, called okurigana. There are also some words that do not have kanji and are thus written in hiragana alone.

‘n’ ‘w-’ ‘r-’ ‘y-‘ ‘m-‘ ‘h-‘ ‘n-‘ ‘t-‘ ‘s-‘ ‘k-‘

‘n’

‘wa’

‘ra’

‘ya’

‘ma’

‘ha’

‘na’

‘ta’

‘sa’

‘ka’

‘a’
‘a’

‘ri’

‘mi’

‘hi’

‘ni’

‘chi’

‘shi’

‘ki’

‘i’
‘i’

‘ru’

‘yu’

‘mu’

‘fu’

‘nu’

‘tsu’

‘su’

‘ku’

‘u’
‘u’

‘re’

‘me’

‘he’

‘ne’

‘te’

‘se’

‘ke’

‘e’
‘e’

‘wo’

‘ro’

‘yo’

‘mo’

‘ho’

‘no’

‘to’

‘so’

‘ko’

‘o’
‘o’
Extended Consonant Syllables
‘p-‘ ‘b-‘ ‘d-‘ ‘z-‘ ‘g-‘

‘pa’

‘ba’

‘da’

‘za’

‘ga’
‘-a’

‘pi’

‘bi’

‘ji’

‘ji’

‘gi’
‘-i’

‘pu’

‘bu’

‘dzu’

‘zu’

‘gu’
‘-u’

‘pe’

‘be’

‘de’

‘ze’

‘ge’
‘-e’

‘po’

‘bo’

‘do’

‘zo’

‘go’
‘-o’
Modified Syllables: Consonant combined with ‘ya,’ ‘yu,’ or ‘yo’
‘p-‘ ‘b-‘ ‘j-’ ‘g-‘ ‘r-‘ ‘m-‘ ‘h-‘ ‘n-‘ ‘ch-‘ ‘sh-‘ ‘k-‘
ぴゃ
‘pya’
びゃ
‘bya’
じゃ
‘jya’
ぎゃ
‘gya’
りゃ
‘rya’
みゃ
‘mya’
ひゃ
‘hya’
にゃ
‘nya’
ちゃ
‘cha’
しゃ
‘sha’
きゃ
‘kya’
‘-ya’
ぴゅ
‘pyu’
びゅ
‘byu’
じゅ
‘jyu’
ぎゅ
‘gyu’
りゅ
‘ryu’
みゅ
‘myu’
ひゅ
‘hyu’
にゅ
‘nyu’
ちゅ
‘chu’
しゅ
‘shu’
きゅ
‘kyu’
‘-yu’
ぴょ
‘pyo’
びょ
‘byo’
じょ
‘jyo’
ぎょ
‘gyo’
りょ
‘ryo’
みょ
‘myo’
ひょ
‘hyo’
にょ
‘nyo’
ちょ
‘cho’
しょ
‘sho’
きょ
‘kyo’
‘-yo’
Long Vowels
oo ee uu ii aa
おお ええ うう いい ああ

Double Consonants: kk, pp, tt, etc. are expressed in hiragana as a small “tsu” (っ) before the kana. For example, chotto meaning “a little” is written as ちょっと.

Katakana

Katakana is the second phonetic Japanese alphabet. Katakana, unlike hiragana is written with straight lines. Generally, katakana is used for writing words of foreign origin.

‘n’ ‘w-’ ‘r-’ ‘y-‘ ‘m-‘ ‘h-‘ ‘n-‘ ‘t-‘ ‘s-‘ ‘k-‘

‘n’

‘wa’

‘ra’

‘ya’

‘ma’

‘ha’

‘na’

‘ta’

‘sa’

‘ka’

‘a’
‘a’

‘ri’

‘mi’

‘hi’

‘ni’

‘chi’

‘shi’

‘ki’

‘i’
‘i’

‘ru’

‘yu’

‘mu’l

‘fu’

‘nu’

‘tsu’

‘su’

‘ku’

‘u’
‘u’

‘re’

‘me’

‘he’

‘ne’

‘te’

‘se’

‘ke’

‘e’
‘e’

‘wo’

‘ro’

‘yo’

‘mo’

‘ho’

‘no’

‘to’

‘so’

‘ko’

‘o’
‘o’
Extended Consonant Syllables
‘p-‘ ‘b-‘ ‘d-‘ ‘z-‘ ‘g-‘

‘pa’

‘ba’

‘da’

‘za’

‘ga’
‘-a’

‘pi’

‘bi’

‘ji’

‘ji’

‘gi’
‘-i’

‘pu’

‘bu’

‘dzu’

‘zu’

‘gu’
‘-u’

‘pe’

‘be’

‘de’

‘ze’

‘ge’
‘-e’

‘po’

‘bo’

‘do’

‘zo’

‘go’
‘-o’
Modified Syllables: Consonant combined with ‘ya,’ ‘yu,’ or ‘yo’
‘p-‘ ‘b-‘ ‘j-’ ‘g-‘ ‘r-‘ ‘m-‘ ‘h-‘ ‘n-‘ ‘ch-‘ ‘sh-‘ ‘k-‘
ピャ
‘pya’
ビャ
‘bya’
ジャ
‘jya’
ギャ
‘gya’
リャ
‘rya’
ミャ
‘mya’
ヒャ
‘hya’
ニャ
‘nya’
チャ
‘cha’
シャ
‘sha’
キャ
‘kya’
‘-ya’
ピュ
‘pyu’
ビュ
‘byu’
ジュ
‘jyu’
ギュ
‘gyu’
リュ
‘ryu’
ミュ
‘myu’
ヒュ
‘hyu’
ニュ
‘nyu’
チュ
‘chu’
シュ
‘shu’
キュ
‘kyu’
‘-yu’
ピョ
‘pyo’
ビョ
‘byo’
ジョ
‘jyo’
ギョ
‘gyo’
リョ
‘ryo’
ミョ
‘myo’
ヒョ
‘hyo’
ニョ
‘nyo’
チョ
‘cho’
ショ
‘sho’
キョ
‘kyo’
‘-yo’
Long Vowels
A long vowel that follows a consonant can be represented with a dash symbol after the kana. For example koohii, which is “coffee” in Japanese, would be written as コーヒー
oo ee uu ii aa
オー エー ウー イー アー

Double Consonants: kk, pp, tt, etc. are expressed in katakana as a small “tsu” (ッ) before the kana For example, shotto, meaning “shot” is written as ショット.

 There are small versions of “ア,” “イ,” “ウ,” “エ,” and “オ” that are “ァ,” “ィ,” “ゥ,” “ェ,” and “ォ.” These are used in conjunction with some other characters to create characters for sounds that were not originally covered by the original set of hiragana/katakana.

  • “ti” and “tu” sounds now commonly written as “ティ,” and “トゥ.”
  • “di” and “du” sounds, are now commonly written as “ディ,” and “ドゥ.”
  • Combining the small “ァ,” “ィ,” “ゥ,” “ェ,” and “ォ” with “フ,” gives character combinations “ファ,” “フィ,” “フェ,” and “フォ” for “fa,” “fi,” “fe,” and “fo” respectively.
  • “wi,” “we,” and “wo” are written as “ウィ,” “ウェ,” and “ウォ.”
  • As the “v-“sound did not originally exist, the “ヴ” character was created to provide that sound. Now, “va,” “vi,” “vu,” “ve,” and “vo” can be written as “ヴァ,” “ヴィ,” “ヴ,” “ヴェ,” and “ヴォ” respectively.
  • For “je,” “she,” and “che,” “ジェ,” “シェ,” and “チェ”are used for them respectively.

Other Alphabets

Kanji: Kanji are the characters that were imported from China. Each kanji character generally has two readings – an onnyomi or音読み (おんよみ), which is the original Chinese reading of the character, and the kunnyomi or 訓読み (くんよみ), which is the Japanese adaptation of the character. Something to note is that characters can have more than one 音読み or 訓読み or both.

Romaji: Romaji is the writing of Japanese phonetic characters as Roman letters. Sometimes it helps with pronunciation of words when learning Japanese.

Punctuation
The symbols for punctuation look slightly different in Japanese compared to English
English . ,
Japanese

Source: Japaneseonline