More Redundancy Again


One of the Japanese language teachers at school has received great joy from my willingness to accept challenges in Japanese. I mention the accepting of challenges because it isn’t simply my study of Japanese or my ability level that gets him going, but rather to sign up for a test and then work to achieve a passing grade.

He has been very supportive and has given me a few books to help study. The latest is called Kyuubetsu Jouyou Kanji Gakushuu Jiten (級別常用漢字学習字典). Yes, long, distinguished-sounding titles are not uncommon on reference books. Perhaps we could translate that as “Common Use Kanji Study Dictionary Categorized by Level”. All of the characters are separated out by level according to the Kanji Proficiency tests. It looks like it is going to be an excellent study tool.

Like any other complicated tool, one needs to read the manual. As I was reading through the explanations in the foreward I noticed something that’s popped up before. It seems pretty common to find two words in a sentence with essentially the same meaning. When they are put together they end out having the same meaning. Hopefully someday I will understand this well enough to explain it.

  • 延べ (のべ)  total, total number
  • 総数 (そうすう) total number, number, count
  • 延べ総数 (のべそうすう) total number

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