Sunday, November 4, 2012

Shunshoku Umegoyomi Vol. 1: Kihei-don (part 2)

Fig. 1: それを何
Continuing the discussion from last time about Kihei:

"And it just won't end, the wife is constantly quarreling [with Kihei] (fig. 2) about this and that (fig. 1)."
Fig. 2: 三日

The first thing to note in fig. 1 is the irregular furigana for 「角」, which is normally read by itself as 「かど」 ("corner"/"edge"), 「かく」 ("angle", among other things), or 「つの」 ("horn"). I took it here to mean "corner", since it fits the context and (sort of) fits the furigana. "Angle" might make sense too, but that feels like a Meiji-era repurposing of the kanji (though I have no etymological information at the moment to back this up).

Edit: as Matt points out in the comments, 「何の角の」 is probably the same as the modern 「何の彼の」, which just means "this or that".

Edit: after changing 「ないしやう」 in fig. 2 to mean "wife", I'm not really sure if "in every corner" makes sense. Perhaps it means "in every way"?

Fig. 2 starts off with the phrase「三日にあげず」, which just means "constantly"/"frequently".

I had difficulty deciphering the second kanji in 「ないしやう」. Since in the previous post, Yonehachi and Tanjirou were discussing Yonehachi's household, the most likely choice seemed to be 「内所ないしょ」 ("kitchen"), despite the absence of a long vowel in the modern version. We've previously seen weird ways of writing 「所」 (such as in fig. 3 of this post), so that's my (tentative) choice.

Fig. 3: 私も
Edit: as explained by Chris in the comments below, the second kanji in 「ないしやう」 is actually 「證」, the traditional form of 「証」. 「内証」 does technically mean "secret" or "one's circumstances (esp. fiscal)", but as Chris indicated, there's an older meaning of "wife". Or as listed in Koujien, 「妻または妾」: "a wife or concubine".

「もめ」 is of course 「揉め」 ("quarrel"/"dispute").

「絶やアしません」 seems to be some sort of colloquial version of 「絶えません」 where 「絶える」 has been nominalized to 「絶」, with the interjection 「やア」 between the noun and the verb 「する」, likely for emphasis.

Fig. 4: 養子に行
"Since you went to [become a] son-in-law (fig. 4), I've also really (fig. 3) been thinking about wanting to leave to change houses (fig. 5) and so my feelings have been troubled, but (fig. 6) because [Kihei] is that kind of ill-tempered [person] (fig. 7), [he's] being stubborn and [says he] won't let me leave (fig. 8)."

Fig. 5: 住かへ
Note the unusual presence of (what seems to be) a sokuon between 「し」 and 「た」. Given the context, it would make more sense to have the past tense of 「する」, 「した」, where 「しつた」 is.

Edit: as Matt suggested in the comments, the kanji before 「しつた」 is 「行」, not 「何」. The calligraphed version of 「行」 is similar to that observed in fig. 2 of this post. As for the meaning, 「行しつた」 → (convert to modern kana orthography) 「行しった」 → (convert to modern okurigana) 「行かしった」 → (convert from dialectal variant to standard version) 「行かしゃった」. At this point, we just have the honorific past tense of 「行く」.

Fig. 6: 氣をもんで居ました
The use of the 「かへ」 pattern in fig. 5 is reminiscent of previous posts, such as this one (see fig. 4). As explained in that post, it can be viewed as grammatically equivalent to 「か」.

Edit: another correction: 「住かへ」 is actually just the same as 「住み替え」 ("to change houses"), not a colloquial variant of 「住か」. This is something I should've picked up on, since the particle 「に」 doesn't make sense here if it were just a noun ― it would've been 「を」, or maybe 「は」.

The first kanji in fig. 6 seems to be 「氣」, but it's not entirely clear from the kuzushiji. The meaning and the top radical of the kanji certainly fit, but it's possible that it could be a variant version of 「氣」, with a radical other than 「米」 in the bottom left.

Fig. 7: どうも
「もんで」 is 「揉む」 in the continuative form (連用形), and here has the meaning "to be troubled about"/"to worry over".

In fig. 7, note the writing of 「意地悪」 ("unkind"/"ill-tempered") as 「意地わる」. This is known as mazegaki, and is stated on Wikipedia as having "originated with modern reforms" (that is, the orthographic reforms that occurred starting with the Meiji period).

Fig. 8: ゑこぢ
There is a comprehension problem with mazegaki because "in some respects it makes the text more difficult to read, as it is not clear that the hiragana are part of a content word, and not okurigana or performing a grammatical function (inflection or particles)". It's very interesting to see that this practice existed, at least to some degree, even during the late Edo period.

The word 「ゑこぢ」, in fig. 8, is the same as the modern word 「意固地えこじ」 ("obstinate" or "stubborn").

Finally, the word 「出すめへ」 can be understood as the grammatical equivalent of 「出すまい」 ("won't let [me] leave"), as explained for 「知れめへ」 in fig. 1 of this post.


  1. I verified 気 in my kuzushi-ji jiten. The ないしやう is 内証 (証 is the old form though, with 登 on the right). It's an old word for "wife".

    1. Thanks! Any suggestions on how/if this would alter the meaning of 「角」, in fig. 1?

    2. perhaps 角 used in close vicinity/ context with 内証 would allude to a wifes anger (ie wife with horns!) or argument of a spousal nature..just a guess though

  2. 何の角の is just "nan no ka no" as in "this and that". Writing it with 角 is unetymological (if you absolutely had to use kanji for "ka", I suppose 彼 would be it), and I'm not sure why it was done (perhaps folk etymology?), but it wasn't that uncommon.

    I think that what you have as 何しつた should actually be 行しつた (check the similarity of 行 in your Sep. 8 post), and how about いかしつた as a reading instead of いつしつた? しった is a variant of しゃった, so the result would be (in modern orthography) "行かしゃった", basically an honorific version of 行く. つ and か look very similar in this style but note that in this case the character directly above the い is narrower -- you would expect つ to be wider.

    Finally, I think that 住かへ is just 住み替え here, not any particle funny business.