Sunday, September 30, 2012

Shunshoku Umegoyomi Vol. 1:
The Apprentice Girl (part 2)

Yonehachi continues her description of Tanjirou's supposed wife from last time:

Fig. 1: またおかみさん
"Also, [Arima] said that your wife was passing [the time] not at home (fig. 1)"
I spent quite a bit of time trying to decipher the meaning of 「とふして」 here, but couldn't find anything that made sense. It's clearly distinct from the preceding 「は」, since there's a period. I checked for both verbs and nouns, but there wasn't anything helpful, so I could use some assistance here.

Edit: yellow9031 suggested in the comments that 「とふして」 is the classical kana equivalent of 「とおして」, which would be written with kanji as 「通して」, or "to pass [the time]".

Fig. 2: 聞ばきく
"The more I heard, I somehow started getting the feeling that it was you (fig. 2), but no matter how much I heard, it didn't settle things [for me], so I specifically made sure to tell that girl that she was forbidden to speak about this matter to anyone (fig. 3)"
 I wasn't sure what to make of 「モウゝゝ」 ― it didn't fit any modern Japanese patterns, so I assumed it was a redoubling of 「モウ」, for emphasis.

Fig. 3: モウゝゝ
Note that 「氣が濟ねへ」 is just a dialectical version of the modern Japanese phrase 「気が済まない」. The kanji here were of course in kyuujitai, and therefore a little difficult to read without prior knowledge of kyuujitai or taking the context into account.

わちき」 is of course a premodern reading of 「わたし」, which we encountered previously. Also note the now-nonstandard writing of 「口止め」 ("forbidding to speak") as 「口留」 ― this isn't particularly surprising, given the relatively similar meanings of 「止める」 and 「留める」 in modern Japanese, but nevertheless made the kanji a bit harder to decipher.

Fig. 4: 今日の朝
I was a little uncertain about the kanji for 「おいて」. 「置」 is of course the most obvious and logical choice, but I can't see the connection between the printed character and the kuzushiji version in fig. 3.

"This morning, I decided that no matter what, I would come and look into this (fig. 4)."

The main issue I had with fig. 4 was figuring out the kanji from which the kuzushiji form of the furigana 「け」, from 「今日」, comes from. The closest match I could come up with, 「介」. I ran into a similar issue with 「け」 in another post, but the two kuzushiji forms don't appear to be related.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Shunshoku Umegoyomi Vol. 1: The Apprentice Girl

Fig. 1: 此頃目見え
We now start to find out how Yonehachi tracked down Tanjirou:

"It was a shitajikko (this is an abbreviation for a child being trained as a geisha), who has been recently coming for meetings with me (fig. 1)."
The most interesting feature of this sentence is the use of parallel lines that I previously thought were reserved for togaki (ト書き) for a parenthetical explanation. That is, the parenthetical sentence above is not a gloss that I added ― it was included by Tamenaga, for clarification.

Presumably, the term shitajikko (written as 「下地っ子」 in modern Japanese), meaning "young boy or girl being trained as a geisha or as a kabuki actor", wasn't one that the average reader would be familiar with. Since Yonehachi is a geisha herself, we can assume that it's referring to a young girl being trained by her. I wasn't completely sure how to parse the last part of the sentence (after the togaki), but it seems most logical to assume that 「ありま」 (Arima) is a name, since a new character had just been mentioned for the first time in the novel. There are both female given names and family names that are "Arima", but since most commoners didn't have family names before the Meiji Restoration, it is most likely the girl's given (and only) name.

Edit: Matt's comment here explained the grammar for the end of the sentence in fig. 1. 「ありまはアな」 is a form of 「あります」 where 「ます」 has first been modified to the geisha-specific form 「まふ」, and then 「まはあ」 is a sound-shifted form of 「まふ」, similar to the transformation that resulted in 「まさア」 in fig. 1 of this post.

The use of the humble word 「目見え」 to refer to the meetings between Yonehachi and the shitajikko shows the difference in their ranks ― Yonehachi is a full-fledged geisha, which puts her in a position of superiority with respect to her student.

Fig. 2: その
I'm not positive, but it looks like 「りやくしことば」 (i.e., 「略し言葉」 in modern Japanese) , meaning "abbreviated word", doesn't use premodern Japanese conjugation. Assuming that 「し」 is the modern verb 「する」 ("to do"), the equivalent premodern Japanese verb 「す」 would have been 「する」 in its attributive form (連体形). In any case, the term is still used in modern Japanese. This is an interesting juxtaposition with the clearly premodern copula, 「なり」, that follows it.

"When I asked the girl where her house was, she said it was in Honjou (fig. 2), and so while talking and having a good time with everyone (fig. 3), when that girl was talking about her neighborhood (fig. 4), the circumstances of the conversation became gossip about you (fig. 5)." 

This is the first time we're encountering the conjunctive particle 「ば」, in 「聞たれば」 (outside of the kotowaza 「住めば都」). Note that the particle's meaning changes based upon the form of the verb preceding it. If the verb is in the imperfective form (未然形), then it takes on a hypothetical (if X, then Y) meaning. But in this case, it follows the realis form (已然形), meaning it implies a logical connection (i.e., "when").

Fig. 3: それから皆々

Deciphering the kanji for 「本所」 was challenging, as the kanji 「所」 does not usually have a lengthened vowel in its on'yomi. After exhausting the list of possibilities for kanji with a lengthened vowel, I ran into 「所」 by chance when I accidentally converted 「ほんじょ」 to kanji with my IME, and it happened to fit the calligraphed kanji quite well. I'm still not quite sure how to correctly determine the kanji there, other than by context/practice.

Fig. 4: 其子が宅
Note the repeated used of the iteration mark in fig. 3, which is of course written as 「々」 in horizontal text. Less often encountered is the vertical equivalent, 「〻」, which is a cursive derivative of 「二」.

I'm not sure about the kanji for 「あそ」, since the kuzushiji version doesn't look anything like 「遊」. I couldn't find any kanji that had a similar meaning or reading, but the meaning of the word itself is quite clear.

In fig. 4, you can see a nonstandard kanji for 「はなし」, namely 「咄]. The kuzushiji form of 「近」 is interesting because it seems to have entirely dropped the "advance" radical (之繞), or 「辶」. Also note how the kuzushiji form of 「所」 here is entirely different from the one observed in fig. 2, in 「本所」.

Fig. 5: どふも

In fig. 5, we encounter a slightly modified version of 「おまはん」 ― 「おまえはん」. But given the context and the replacement of 「ま」 with 「まえ」, which a valid reading of 「前」, we can safely assume the meaning remains the same.

Note the unusual kanji choice for the kuzushiji form of 「す」 in the furigana for 「様子」 ― the most common one is 「寸」, which is the origin of the modern hiragana 「す」. I was able to decpiher the kanji, as we have seen 「様」 in Umegoyomi several times before, and 「子」 was quite straightforward too. But without the kanji, it would have been easy to overlook the squiggle at the top of 「す」 and think it was actually 「て」.

Fig. 6: 其の晩
"So that night I had her sleep with me and when I asked her [about it] more (fig. 6), [she said that] that in [your] house there is a beautiful wife (fig. 7)."

In fig. 6, once again we see the use of a modern verb ― 「寝かす」, as this sentence takes places within a character's dialogue.

The first thing to note about fig. 7 is the use of the word 「意気」 ― although its literal meaning is heart/spirit, it seemed to me that Yonehachi was primarily referring to the wife's appearance.

Fig. 7: 宅に意気
Next, we see a new word ― 「お内室さん」, read as 「おかみさん」. The second kanji in 「内室」 was a little difficult to read, so I turned to Nihongo Resources again, knowing only the first kanji. From the meaning of 「おかみさん」, it was clear that Yonehachi thought that Tanjirou was already married, although she is likely referring to Tanjirou's fiance, Ochou. 「内室」, literally "inside the room", is a not-so-common term for a wife.

Fig. 8: 夫じや
Since the guy was married, I thought that [she] must be mistaken [that it was you] (fig. 8), [so] when [I] asked her for yet more detail (fig. 9), she said that there was a wife whose age seems to be greater than your age (fig. 10).

At first glance, it appeared that the first word in fig. 8 was just 「それ」 (as in "that"), written with a nonstandard kanji. However, when trying to find that kanji, it turned out that it was actually a nonstandard reading for 「夫」, meaning "husband", of course. Thus, it seems to me that 「夫」 is used here to refer specifically to Tanjirou, while also alluding to his (supposed) marital state.

Fig. 9: 猶くわ
The word 「なほ」, meaning "yet more", is usually written using kana nowadays, but seen written here with the kanji 「猶」. This usage still exists in modern Japanese, but just isn't seen very often.

The word 「くわしく」 would be grammatically valid according to either premodern or modern Japanese rules. In premodern Japanese, the continuative form (連用形) of the adjective 「くわし」 is also 「くわしく」, with the primary distinction being in the dictionary forms, where the premodern version doesn't end with an 「い」 (thus「くわし」, instead of 「くわしい」).

Fig. 10: おまはん
Not much to remark about fig. 10 other than the use of 「須」 as the kanji from which the kuzushiji form of 「す」, at the end of the sentence, was derived. I mostly just figured that out from context, since there wasn't much else that was grammatically correct that could fit between 「ま」 and 「し」.

I have to say, this dialogue is much easier to understand and follow than the narration. It's almost as if two different languages are in use. After transcribing the kuzushiji into typewritten kanji/kana, reading the dialogue is quite similar to reading modern Japanese.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Shunshoku Umegoyomi Vol. 1: Yonehachi & Tanjirou, Reunited (part 5)

Now back to Yonehachi:
Fig. 1: よね「ナニ
"Huh? It was this morning, when I left my house and came with the intention of going to the Myoken [temple] (fig. 1)."
The main difficulty I had here was deciphering 「妙見」, as it was a proper noun. I still don't know which kanji the 「け」 in the furigana for 「妙見」 originates from ― I actually figured this compound out directly from the kanji. 「見」 was a little challenging, but I remembered fig. 4 from this post, which has the same kanji in the same calligraphed form.

Also of assistance was the use of the verb 「参る」, which here retains its premodern definition of "to go to the place of a god or a person of high status", which suggested to me that Yonehachi had initially intended to visit a religious place or a wealthy/noble person's house.

Fig. 2: 実にふしぎ
Another new pattern that pops up regularly after this is the (now) irregular reading of the kanji「宅」 as 「うち」, although it makes sense from the meaning.

"It really is a mysterious thing, isn't it? (fig. 2) That you would be in a place like this is truly something that I wouldn't have thought even in my dreams, you know (fig. 3,4)," [Yonehachi said].
Fig. 3: お前様が
Fig. 2 was straightforward. The first difficulty in fig. 3 was deciphering the kanji for 「おまはん」, although I already knew the meaning from a previous post. Given its association with the modern 「お前」, it was obvious that the first kanji was 「前」. The second kanji I determined from this dictionary entry for 「おまはん」. In the Osaka dialect (大阪弁),  it means 「お前様」, and the kanji 「様」 matches the second calligraphed kanji for 「おまはん」. This fits the traditional use of 「お前」 as a term of respect.

The next problem was deciphering the kanji for 「こんな」. The first kanji is one we saw before in 「ここ」 ― 「此」. The second one would have been quite difficult, but it's the same as the second kanji as in 「おまはん」 ― 「様」. This use makes sense when you consider the additional use of 「様」 in modern Japanese as 「よう」, meaning "way to" or "method of". The word can thus be expanded to the modern Japanese phrase 「このよう」, commonly written as 「このような」, which has the same meaning.

Fig. 4: ほんに夢にも
Also difficult to determine was the second kanji in 「御在宅」, largely due to the 3rd stroke (the vertical one in the bottom left) being missing. The first was obvious because an 「お」 or 「ご」 at the beginning of a word is usually 「御」(and it definitely is for 「おいで」 in modern Japanese). The last kanji was clear from having just encountered it in fig. 1. I then just used NihongoResources' wild card search to determine that it was 「在宅」, through visual comparison and word meaning. Although the furigana use is irregular, the meaning of 「在宅」 ("being in"/"being at home") matches the contextual meaning of 「おいで」, its reading in in fig. 3. Note that the latter is a polite expression, once again showing the difference in status between Yonehachi and Tanjirou (whether that be personal or societal).

There was some guesswork when it came to fig. 4, because of the use of colloquial speech. I assumed that 「ほんに」 had the same meaning as 「本当に」, and that 「知らなん」 meant 「知らないん」, mainly from the context. Edit: as Matt says in the comments, 「知らなんだ」 can be broken down into 「知ら」+「なんだ」, where the former is the imperfective form (未然形) of 「知る」 ("to know"), while 「なんだ」 is an auxiliary verb attached to verbs in the imperfective form to both negate them and make them past tense.

Edit 2: as another commenter has mentioned, this pattern is still standard in the Kansai dialect. Since Umegoyomi is set in Tokyo, this would suggest that the Kansai dialect better preserves premodern pronunciation than modern standard Japanese does.

Without context, one might have assumed that the last character was the kanji 「子」, which it very well could have been, were it not for the grammar of the surrounding words indicating it was 「ね」, which can in fact be represented in kuzushiji by 「子」. But the first thing that tipped me off was the lack of furigana, which seems to be ever-present in Umegoyomi.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Shunshoku Umegoyomi Vol. 1: Yonehachi & Tanjirou, Reunited (part 4)

Continuing the discussion about Tanjirou's condition:

Fig. 1: 実にやせたねへ。
"You've lost a lot of weight, haven't you? (fig. 1) Well, your face's color isn't good — it's ghastly pale (fig. 2). Since when has it been this bad?", asked Yonehachi (fig. 3)
Note the use of the abbreviated form of koto (known as a gouryakugana) in the furigana for 「実」. The use of that kanji is itself unusual, in that 「実に」 is typically read 「じつに」 in modern Japanese. However, the kanji does have the alternate reading 「まこと」, so it is entirely permissible.

Fig. 2: マア色のわるい

The gouryakugana is used again in fig. 2, as regular kana. And once again, the combination of historical kana orthography and calligraphed kanji make it challenging to read a compound, 「真青」 this time, although the second kanji was very easy to decipher, and from there it was just a process of elimination.

The use katakana for the assertive sentence particle yo seems to be another established pattern in Umegoyomi. It also appears to be consistently written in a smaller size than the rest of the glyphs.

We also see the irregular use of periods once again — there appears to be no apparent grammatical reason for placing a period between 「は」 and 「真」, but there it is.

Fig. 3: 何時分から
Fig. 3 is interesting in that it starts off with an irregular kanji compound of a new sort. It appears to combine the compounds 「何時いつ」, meaning "when", and 「時分じぶん」, meaning "time", by removing the one copy of the shared 「時」 kanji to create 「何時分いつじぶん」, which I interpreted as "since when".

The sentence-ending 「だへ」 seems to be historical kana orthography for 「だい」, which is still used informally as an interrogative sentence particle.

"Huh? It's been like this since after the 15th or 16th [of the month] (fig. 4). It's not that big of a deal, but I've been feeling depressed, which won't do" (fig. 5).
Fig. 4: 主「ナニ
The first difficulty I ran into with fig. 4 was deciphering the second kanji. It didn't look at all recognizable, and there were no furigana. The key was to realize that since preceding and following it were 「十」 and 「六」, both numbers, a number was highly likely (this was compounded by the lack of furigana). At that point, I just searched a kuzushiji database for number kanji, and found 「五」. It also fits because the use of a numerical range makes grammatical and contextual sense here.

Fig. 5: 大造なこと
The next difficulty was with the kanji 「跡」. Although in terms of meaning, this kanji should clearly be the homophonic 「後」, the kuzushiji version looked nothing like that. It's always a good bet to try homophones, so I searched for 「あと」, and 「跡」 ("tracks"/"prints") popped up.

The final thing I wasn't sure about was how to translate 「ナニ」. As it's written in katakana, it appears to be an interjection, without any particular semantic significance. If there's an "official" way to translate it so that it remains true to the original text while also being readable in English, that would be helpful.

The first word in fig. 5 was relatively easy to decipher in terms of kuzushiji by searching for the radicals, but the meaning of the word 「大造」, was only found after extensive searches online, which led me to this dictionary definition. It wasn't in the Koujien, but was in the Daijisen. Edit: from a comment below, it looks like it may actually an alternate spelling of the common modern Japanese word 「大層」. However, both words have similar meanings, so the end result is the same either way.

The kanji 「氣」 was a little easier to decipher thanks to my knowledge of the traditional version (旧字体) of the kanji 「気」. The kanji is part of a compound verb, 「気がふさぐ」, meaning "to feel depressed". What was really odd was the use of an unrelated kanji, 「閉」, to represent the end of the verb.

That the last kanji in fig. 5 is 「閉」 is only a guess. Anyone who has studied simplified Chinese characters knows that the radical 「門」 is simplified to 「门」. Many of the simplifications in Chinese come from traditional simplifications used in brush writing, and so I assumed that the kanji of interest would have a 「門」 radical and 3 more strokes below. The kanji that best matched this description was 「閉」, although I couldn't find a reading for it that matches this claim (therefore, other kanji might be possible matches too, so feel free to suggest any possibilities that come to mind).

I wasn't sure about the 「ならねへ」 at the end of fig. 5 either. I assumed that it was a dialectal version of 「ならない」, which is used in modern Japanese as a formal verb for expressing that something won't do. Any suggestions would be nice for this as well.

Fig. 6: それはいゝ
"But that's all fine — but how did you come to know [where I was]?(fig. 6) There are also many things I want to ask [you]." Tanjirou, moved to tears, looked  pitiful (fig. 7).
Note the use of an iteration mark in fig. 6. It looks more like the katakana iteration mark, 「ヽ」, than the hiragana iteration mark. However, since both serve the same purpose, it makes no real difference.

The use of 「手めへ」 for 「手前」 was also very interesting, as it appears to be a precursor to the modern Japanese orthographical problem of mazegaki. Once again, the close, informal, relationship between Yonehachi and Tanjirou is established.

Fig. 7: 聞てへことも
なみだぐみて あはれ也

We see the "simplified" 「門」 once again in fig. 7, this time with the kanji 「聞」. Note the irregular assignment of furigana — the kanji 「聞」 is normally read with only one 「き」. Once the pronunciation is modernized,  the first word in fig. 7 becomes 「聞きたい」 ("to want to ask").

Also of interest is that the word 「たんと」, which means "many" or "much", is possibly a Kansai-ben term. This term may have simply disappeared from Tokyo at some point later on in history.

The togaki contains a compound verb, 「なみだぐむ」, "to be moved to tears". You have to be careful here not to try to split up these verbs  — always watch out for the continuous particle 「て」, because if it's absent, then you may have ended up splitting a verb when it shouldn't have been.

The final difficulty was the last kanji in the togaki, 「也」. The kuzushiji was impossible to decipher, but having heard the term 「哀れなり」 several times before, 「也」 came to mind fairly quickly. Looking at a kuzushiji database helped confirm that. Also, as you can see in fig. 1, it is the kanji from which the hiragana 「や」 is derived, and this character looks similar to 「や」.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Shunshoku Umegoyomi Vol. 1: Yonehachi & Tanjirou, Reunited (part 3)

Fig. 1: わちきやア

For whatever reason, this part proved to be quite challenging, so it took me a lot longer to figure out what I could. The last half of fig. 1 (starting from 「と思つて」) was straightforward, but I couldn't figure out how to parse the first half. 「わちき」 is a premodern version of 「私」 ("I"), and the use of a katakana for the second character in 「やア」 seems to suggest that it's an interjection (to express surprise, in this case). The use of 「完」 for 「もふ」, or 「もう」 in modern Japanese, is unusual, but the furigana provide the necessary clarification, and it makes grammatical sense. Edit: As Matt explains below, 「知れめへ」 can be parsed as the imperfective form (未然形) of 「知」 followed by 「めへ」 (pronounced 「めえ」). which is a dialectal form of 「まい」. Although this was not explained in my classical Japanese grammar book (link below), 「まい」 is the negative presumptive (打消推量) auxiliary verb, which always follows the imperfective form, as explained with an example here.

"Thinking that you might not know me anymore, my heart was pounding (fig. 1). And since I hurriedly walked, I'm in pain," Yonehachi said, beating her chest (fig. 2).

Fig. 2: そしてもふ


The primary difficulty is with 「知れめへか」. The verb 「知る」 ("to know") has two forms of conjugation: yodan (四段) and kami-nidan (上二段) - see Classical Japanese: A Grammar by Shirane for a thorough treatment of this topic. The yodan 「知る」 takes the form 「知れ」 when in the realis (已然形) or imperative (命令形) forms. OTOH, the kami-nidan conjugation of the verb takes on that form when in the imperfective (未然形) or continuative (連用形) forms. So, in this case, the conjugation doesn't help much in narrowing down what comes after it.

The only grammatically sound explanation I was able to find is that 「め」 is the realis form of the speculatory auxiliary verb 「む」. However, I have no idea what function 「へ」 has here (it doesn't appear to be the directional particle 「へ」). The following, interrogative particle, 「か」, is usually preceded by either a noun or the attributive form (連体形) of a verb with an implied noun.

Fig. 3: 胭がひっつく
There was only one kanji I couldn't figure out in fig. 2 - the one after 「歩」. Even the listed archaic forms of 「歩く」 were of no help. Edit: the kanji after 「歩」 is likely 「行」, as suggested below. However, the presence of furigana made it easy to determine the overall meaning.

"My throat is sticking," she said, sitting down next to Tanjirou (fig. 3).
The first kanji in fig. 3 is yet another good example of non-standard kanji usage. The two acceptable kanji for 「のど」 ("throat") listed in Koujien are 「喉」 and 「咽」. While the right radical of the first kanji in this sentence is clearly 「因」, the left radical doesn't seem to be 「口」. To find other kanji with the same reading, I used Tangorin, which yielded one other kanji with the 「因」 radical on the right - 「胭」. I'm not sure if that's right, but it fits a lot better than 「咽」.

 "Have you been ill?" Yonehachi said, intently looking at his face (fig. 4).
Fig. 4: おまはん

The first thing to note is the pronoun 「おまはん」 (「は」 can be pronounced as 「わ」 even in cases other than the particle 「は」, another inconsistency in historical kana orthography) means "you" - roughly equivalent to 「お前」 in modern Japanese. One can imagine that Yonehachi and Tanjirou must be quite close, as the use of this pronoun certainly wouldn't have been acceptable between mere acquaintances.

The next part of the sentence, 「煩つてゐさつしやる」, would be written using modern kana orthography as 「煩っていさっしゃる」. Unless you've encountered this particular pattern before, you have no choice but to check each permutation of small/large kana for the 2 instances of 「つ」 and 1 instance of 「や」 to try to find a matching word. In any case, the verb 「ゐさつしやる」 is equivalent to the modern Japanese verb 「なさる」, the polite form of "to do".

Once again, the presence of 「へ」 doesn't make sense to me. However, note that unlike fig. 1, it occurs after 「か」, so the two patterns may not be related. Edit: turns out this is related to the previous occurrence — 「かへ」 (historical kana orthography) → 「かえ」 (Edo dialect) → 「かい」. The final version, 「かい」, is, in modern Japanese, a gentler/more masculine version of 「か」, although its use here by a woman suggests that such gender rules may be a more recent invention.

Also note the lack of iteration marks for 「つくづく」 - there are cases where repeated sounds/patterns are written out. Edit: As Matt suggests below, this may be because the repeated kana occurred at the start of a "new" line (at least within the togaki).

It's not clear whether the second to last character in the togaki (stage instructions written in two parallel lines) at the end of fig. 4 is the kanji 「見」 or the hiragana 「み」. Either one would make sense grammatically, and 「見」 is the kanji which this kuzushiji form of the kana 「み」 came from.