Wikizilla:Romanization

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Which standard should be used?
Criteria Hepburn Modified
Hepburn
Custom*
Kana ✔️
Long vowels ✔️
Particles ✔️
Extended kana ✔️
Syllabic n ✔️
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The romanization of Japanese is the representation of Japanese text using Latin characters. Wikizilla follows its own romanization scheme, largely adapted from Hepburn.

Formatting romaji[edit source]

Main article: wikipedia:Hepburn romanization.

Romanization, referred to as rōmaji (ローマ字) in Japanese, aims to accurately reflect the pronunciations of Japanese through Latin script. Numerous romanization styles have been proposed, the most widely used of which is Hepburn romanization.

Romaji will typically appear on the site through the {{Nihongo}} template. An example of a typical page opening is: '''Godzilla''' {{Nihongo|ゴジラ|Gojira}} is a..., with Gojira being the romaji representation of Godzilla's Japanese name (ゴジラ). The Nihongo template automatically italicizes the second parameter which is entered. If romaji is used outside of this template, it must be manually italicized by surrounding it with double apostrophes: ''Gojira'' yields Gojira.

Wikizilla primarily uses a hybrid of Hepburn and Modified Hepburn. Gojūon and yōon kana are romanized according to Hepburn romanization; し is rendered shi but never si, ふ is rendered fu but never hu, つ is rendered tsu but never tu, etc.

Long vowels[edit source]

Wikizilla's romanization scheme diverges from Hepburn in its representation of long vowels. While both Hepburn and Modified Hepburn instruct the rendering of a long I within the same morpheme as ii, Wikizilla instead renders this as a single I with a macron: ī. Furthermore, while Hepburn renders two A's or two E's within the same morpheme as aa and ee, Wikizilla instead uses Modified Hepburn's method of rendering them as ā and ē, respectively. Therefore, all instances of a long vowel contained within a single morpheme should be represented by a single vowel with a macron. This is in order to distinguish between true long vowels—such as in Shī ("Caesar")—and vowels part of separate morphemes−such as in Eiichi.

Two vowels should only appear adjacent if they are contained within separate morphemes. For example, the word for the color gray, (はい) (いろ), is rendered haiiro, due to the first kanji being pronounced hai and the second as iro.

Particles[edit source]

Wikizilla follows Modified Hepburn's method of rendering particles. When used as particles, は is written as wa (not ha), へ as e (not he), and を as o (not wo).

Extended katakana[edit source]

While extended katakana do not often appear, Wikizilla follows Hepburn romanization's guidelines for rendering them. For example, シェ is written as she, フォ as fo, ティ as ti, and so on.

Syllabic n[edit source]

Wikizilla follows Modified Hepburn's guidelines for rendering the syllabic n (ん/ン). It should be written as n except before vowels or y, in which case it is written n' (with an apostrophe), but never as m.

The given name Shinichi ( (しん) (いち)) would be rendered Shin'ichi due to the first kanji containing the syllabic n and being followed directly after by a vowel, i (い). Something like the word shinigami ( (しに) (がみ)), meaning "god of death," would not be rendered with an apostrophe due to it not containing the syllabic n; the n and i are not separate mora, as with んい (n'i), but are rather connected as a single vowel: に (ni). Similarly, () (にょ) (meaning "female ghost") would be rendered as kenyo because the n and yo form a single vowel, nyo (にょ).

Translation of names[edit source]

When translating the names of Japanese people in to English, plain text should be prioritized and diacritics avoided, especially in page titles. For example, "Ishiro Honda" is preferred over "Ishirō Honda."

Name order[edit source]

In Japanese, names are formatted in surname-given name order, opposite to American names. Thus, Eiji Tsuburaya's name in Japanese is Tsuburaya Eiji. When translating, the name order should be switched to reflect that of American names.

Preferred names[edit source]

Some Japanese people, often actors or singers, may stylize their names in English. In this case, the person's preferred name should be used as opposed to the direct translation. Examples of this include:

This does not apply to the names of fictional characters, however. Kiriko Tsujimori's surname should be written Tsujimori, despite her helmet in the film reading "Tuzimori."

Long vowels[edit source]

As mentioned above, the method by which long vowels are romanized depends on whether or not both vowels are apart of the same morpheme. In the example of Masaaki Tezuka, "Masaaki" is written with two A's due to each vowel being apart of a separate morpheme:

まさ あき
Masa aki

The first kanji of his surname, 昌, is pronounced masa (まさ) and the second, 明, as aki (あき). Thus, transcribing it as "Masaki" is not appropriate in this situation.

Eiichi: Ei ( (えい)) + ichi ( (いち))
Tadaaki: Tada ( (ただ)) + aki ( (あき))
Inoue: Ino ( (いの)) + ue ( (うえ))
Tomoo: Tomo ( (とも)) + o ( ())

On the other hand, Nisan Takahashi's given name is not written using two I's. This is due to both vowels being apart of the same morpheme:

にい さん
san

The first kanji, 二, is pronounced (にい), the combination of ni (に) and i (い). Because both I's are apart of the same morpheme, they are represented in romaji as a single I with a macron ( ī ), or as a simple I when in plain English.

Eizo: Ei ( (えい)) + ( (ぞう))
Omori: Ō ( (おお)) + mori ( (もり))
Kochi: ( (こう)) + chi ( ())
Shuzaburo: Shū ( (しゅう)) + zabu ( (ざぶ)) + ( (ろう))