Japanese-English Tea Glossary


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Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby Drax » Dec 15th, '10, 20:47

This thread contains a list of tea-related terms along with their Japanese spellings. (I added a 'short' pronunciation guide to the end of this post).

If you would like me to add (or correct) something, please post!

Most terms will use kanji, which are the complex characters from Chinese origin. All Japanese can also be written using simpler kana, so this possibility can cause some challenges when searching. Names will usually use kanji.

For the majority of entries, I have the kanji and kana in paranthesis, like (kanji, kana).

Example:
(o)cha (茶、(お)ちゃ) -- tea

Artisans
Yamane Seigan (山根 清玩、やまね せいがん)
Noutomi Chouun (納富 鳥雲、のうとみ ちょううん)
Noutomi Susumu (納富 晋、のうとみ すすむ)
Nakao Tetsuaki (中尾 哲彰、なかお てつあき)
Shibuya Deishi (渋谷 泥詩、しぶや でいし)
Shibuya Eiichi (渋谷 英一、しぶや えいいち)
Kaneta Masanao (兼田 昌尚、かねた まさなお)
Mukuhara Kashun (椋原 佳俊、むくはら かしゅん)
Tanii Houzan (谷井 芳山、たにい ほうざん)
Kenji (憲児, けんじ)
Gyokko (玉光, ぎょっこう)

Teaware – Main Category
Teaware is often given the suffix "yaki" (焼、焼き、やき)
Hagi (萩、はぎ)
........Ao – blue (青、あお)
........Aka – red (赤、あか)
........Oni – ogre/demon (鬼、おに)
........Hime – princess/lovely (姫、ひめ)
Bizen (備前、びぜん)
Tokoname (常滑、とこなめ)
Banko (萬古、ばんこ)
Shigaraki (信楽、しがらき)
Tanba (丹波、たんば)
Kutani (九谷、くたに)
Shino (志野、しの)
Oribe (織部、おりべ)

Teaware – Item type
Guinomi (ぐい呑み、ぐい呑、ぐいのみ) – a sake cup
Guinomi (ぐい飲み、ぐいのみ) – 飲is used for ‘to drink’ but usually written w/ 呑 for the cup
Yunomi (湯呑み、湯呑、ゆのみ) – a generic term for a (tea) cup
Chawan (茶碗、ちゃわん) – a large tea cup
Kyuusu (急須、きゅうす) – a teapot with a side-handle
*Houhin (宝瓶、ほうひん) – a teapot with no handle (often quite small)
Shiboridashi (搾り出し、搾出、しぼりだし) – a shallow dish, from “to squeeze out” (搾 may also be 絞)
Yuzamashi (湯冷まし、ゆざまし) – dish or bowl for cooling water
Tokkuri (徳利、とっくり) – a sake dispenser (looks sort of like a round vase)
Mizusashi (水指し、水指、みずさし) – a canister to hold water
Tetsubin (鉄瓶、てつびん) – a classic iron tea kettle
Ginbin (銀瓶、ぎんびん) – a silver kettle (“bin” is a generic term for “bottle”)
Chashaku (茶杓、ちゃしゃく) – a tea scoop (“ladle”)
Chataku (茶托、ちゃたく) – a tea saucer, usually lacquered
Tenmoku (天目、てんもく) - a tea bowl with a wide brim and narrow base

Teas -- Main category
Sencha (煎茶、せんちゃ)
........Asamushi (浅蒸し、あさむし) -- lightly steamed
........Chuumushi (中蒸し、ちゅうむし) -- medium steamed
........Fukamushi (深蒸し、ふかむし) -- deeply steamed
Matcha, maccha (抹茶、まっちゃ)
........Usucha (薄茶、うすちゃ) -- "thin" tea
........Koicha (濃茶、こいちゃ) -- "deep" or "thick" tea
Gyokuro (玉露、ぎょくろ)
Kabusecha (被せちゃ、かぶせちゃ) -- "covered" tea
Genmaicha (玄米茶、げんまいちゃ)
Mugicha (麦茶、むぎちゃ)
Houjicha (焙じ茶、ほうじちゃ) -- roasted green tea
Kukicha (茎茶、くきちゃ) -- tea from twigs of tea plant
Bancha (番茶、 ばんちゃ) -- coarse tea
Mecha (芽茶、めちゃ) -- coarse broken tea and buds

Teas -- Varietals
Yutaka Midori (豊か 緑、ゆたか みどり) -- "Wealthy/rich Green"
Miyabi (雅、みやび) -- "elegance," "refinement"
Kuradashi (蔵出し、倉出し、くらだし) -- "delivery" (of goods from warehouse)

Pottery Terms
Sansai (三彩、さんさい) – three-color
Tebineri (手捻り、手びねり、てびねり) – formed by hand
Tedzukuri (手作り、 手造り、 手づくり、てづくり) – hand-made
Mentori (面取り、めんとり) –chamfered, beveled
Warikoudai (割高台、わりこうだい) – notched feet, split feet
Namako (海鼠、なまこ、ナマコ) – sea-cucumber (particular Hagi glaze style)

Famous Kilns (kama, 窯、かま)
Shunko-Enn (春湖苑、しゅんこ えん)
(Climbing Kiln)
Odaiba Gama (お台場 窯, おだいば がま) -- Shibuya

Techniques
Tobikana - "Flying Plane (wood working)" (飛び鉋, とびかんな). The clay is scored with a chattering tool while turning on the potter's wheel in order to make a repeated series of marks. The tool is called a "biri" (びり)

Nerikomi - "Refined mixture" (練込, ねりこみ). This is the marbled effect in the clay. It is created by pigmenting the clay with different minerals and kneading them together to form layers or striations.

Kairagi - "Plum flower skin" (梅花皮, かいらぎ). This is the "shark skin" crawling glaze used mostly in Hagi ware.

Other Terms
Chadougu – Tea Tools (茶道具、ちゃどうぐ)
Chanoyu – Tea Ceremony (茶の湯、ちゃのゆ)
Nihon – Japan (日本、にほん)
Debana - "first brew" (出花、でばな)

Quick Pronunciation Guide
Japanese is a syllabic language, so the pronunciation of words is relatively simple.

Vowels:
'a' -- short as in "father"
'i' -- long as in "feel"
'u' -- long as in "woo"
'e' -- short as in "test" or "eh"
'o' -- long as in "boat"

I put the vowels in Japanese order. Note that "sake" is pronounced "sah-keh," not "sah-key."

Vowels can be doubled. Any double-vowel is basically held twice as long (Japanese works off of timing/beat system, so for example, "sencha" is "se.n.cha," three syllables). But "kyusu" is actually spelled "kyuusu" in Japanese, and so is pronounced "kyu.u.su" (that is, the kyuu is held out longer than the su).

The only vowel pair that changes in pronunciation is "ei," as in "sensei." This pair has more of an "ay" sound, as in "say." The only other goofiness in vowel pairs is when considering lengthening "o." This vowel is usually lengthened by adding a "u," but is still pronounced like "boat." Thus "houhin" is pronounced like "hoh-hee-n." You will occasionally see "o" doubled with another "o" -- this happens with a few special words (big: ooki, wolf: ookami) -- again, still pronounced "oh" even though it looks like "oo."

All consonants in Japanese are paired up with a vowel (ka, ki, ku, ke, ko). Only one consonant stands alone: n. As in se-n-cha. When "n" happens in the middle of a word before m/p/b, it turns into more of an "m" sound. (Note, there is still a "na, ni, nu, ne, no" sequence as well).

For the rest of the consonants, they sound basically like English equivalents. There are a few differences. The "g" often is more in the back of the throat. The "fu" sound is more between "foo" and "who" (not a hard teeth-biting-lower-lip f-sound). The "r" has the tongue on the roof of the mouth and sounds between and "r" and "l."

Any sound like "kyo" or "gyo" are pronounced in one shot. NOT "kiyo" or "giyo" -- those are different words. So yes, if you pronounce "Tokyo" like "To-ki-yo" you're saying it terribly incorrectly. Not to mention it's actually spelled "Toukyou." Same with "gyokuro" -- three short syllables: gyo.ku.ro.

Doubled consonants (kk, ss, tch, +others) are indicative of a gemination (held slightly longer). In Japanese, it arises due to use of the sokuon: っ -- sometimes called a "small tsu" (つ). I sort of liken it to saying the word "headdress" -- if you say "headdress" properly, you have a slight pause on the "dd" before continuing the word. An example tea word is "matcha" (まっちゃ) -- "matcha" is not a quick 2-syllable word, but it has a slight pause in the middle.

As a final note, a few different systems exist to turn the Japanese language into English spellings. I've been using the modified Hepburn system. In this method, spellings are closer to how they sound in English, for example, "ta, chi, tsu, te, to" are the syllables using the 't' sound. In other methods, that same sequence would be "ta, ti, tu, te, to" (but "ti" would still be pronounced "chi"). These differences are also why you'll see "matcha" sometimes spelled "maccha," but I'll stop there, as this topic quickly gets confusing!

Edits: for updating purposes. Thanks to all those who have helped!
Last edited by Drax on Dec 25th, '13, 10:34, edited 13 times in total.
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby togei » Dec 15th, '10, 22:33

Great list.
I think Tebirini (手捻り、手びりに、てびにり) – formed by hand
should be
TebiNEri
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby Drax » Dec 15th, '10, 22:38

Thanks, fixed it! I really butchered that one... some dyslexia going on there, too. :D

Tebineri (手捻り、手びねり、てびねり) – formed by hand
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby Chip » Dec 16th, '10, 00:12

Very good so far Drax. :mrgreen:

Members can post terms here, English to be translated, or Japanese to be translated. Hopefully Drax-San will translate for us and update his OP :idea:

Drax, how about putting translations for the tea types you have already, especially for newer drinkers of Japanese teas.

Some more basic terms, asa, chu, fukamushi.

Some tea varietal names have interesting translations as well, Yutaka Midori for instance.

Thanks Drax!
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby AdamMY » Dec 16th, '10, 00:36

Drax,

curious do you have an idea of the translation of:

Mukuhara Kashun?
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby Drax » Dec 16th, '10, 07:50

Adam, I added Mukuhara to the list.

I am generally very poor with names, which can have lots of tricky spellings that may not be standard. But I was able to come up with something and compare it to a picture of a Mukuhara box, and it looks right.

Chip, I added the mushi types as well as the usu and koi types, and Yutaka Midori as well.

I know I could add a ton of varietals and artists. I will try to compile a better list this weekend. Or if anybody has particular interests, just continue to mention them.

Mukuhara Kashun (椋原 佳俊、むくはら かしゅん)
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby OhJungMin » Dec 16th, '10, 13:23

I found this amazing website that explains a lot about the Japanese pottery styles etc.
http://www.e-yakimono.net/guide/
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby Drax » Dec 22nd, '10, 12:41

I finally figured out what characters make up "houhin" -- 宝瓶

瓶 is often "bin" (like tetsuBIN), which is why you occasionally see houbin.

In any case, I thought it was interesting searching on Yahoo Japan, because a bunch of these special beads came up (天球) when searching for 宝瓶.

From what I can tell, though, these beads are sort of good-luck beads and have nothing to do with the teaware.
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby Drax » Dec 24th, '10, 11:48

I'm still not sure how to spell Eiichi (Shibuya). From the script on the box of the recent SO, I think 瑩 might be the 'ei'... but it's hard to say.

According to Magokorodou's site on eBay, Shibuya Deishi uses the Odaiba Gama (at least, in part), so I've added that to the kilns.

お台場 (Odaiba) means a fort or battery (literally 'platform place'). Apparently in Tokyo, there were a few artificial forts created in the water, one of which was expanded into a port/maritime locale (known as Odaiba).

I'm not sure whether that means the kiln is located there or not.

"Kama" is the term for kiln, by the way. It will often get changed to "gama" if attached onto a name.
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby teaisme » Jan 6th, '11, 17:20

this is great stuff thanks!
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby Drax » Jan 16th, '11, 23:13

I added a couple of miscellaneous items throughout the list.

A few notes...

Finally got the spelling on Shibuya Eiichi, thanks to the Snowdrifts! :D

Kabusecha -- the term comes from the verb 'kabuseru,' which means 'to cover.'

Houhin -- I asked around on this term. The feedback I got was that 泡瓶 was probably the original spelling (泡 is a kanji for bubbles, or foam), but people changed it to 宝瓶, where 宝 has the same pronunciation ("hou") but means "treasure." As to why it's houhin and not houbin (just about every other use of 瓶 is "bin"), it may have to do with older origins of the word.... but I don't have any more info on it.
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby togei » Jan 19th, '11, 23:48

I would like to provide this link, http://www.aisf.or.jp/~jaanus/ It says it is focused on architecture but it actually has a very large and varied set of translated words.
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby Drax » May 11th, '11, 20:49

I added a pronunciation guide to the end of the original post.

It crams a lot of information into a 'small' space. I wasn't able to hit every single nuance, but it should help with most general words. Of course, if there's any lingering questions, please ask!
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby nickE » May 11th, '11, 21:03

Drax wrote:I added a pronunciation guide to the end of the original post.

It crams a lot of information into a 'small' space. I wasn't able to hit every single nuance, but it should help with most general words. Of course, if there's any lingering questions, please ask!

Wow, this is really awesome. Thank you Drax!
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Re: Japanese-English Tea Glossary

Postby Stentor » May 12th, '11, 01:54

That's great, Drax, thank you!!
Maybe you could also enlighten us on the rules regarding which syllable to put the emphasis on? This sometimes seems unusual and irregular, but I assume there is some sort of system behind it?

For instance, news reporters have been saying Fukushima at least 3 different ways, each emphasising a different syllable; FU-ku-shi-ma, fu-KU-shi-ma, fu-ku-SHI-ma. I figured at one point some of them must have been told the correct way of saying it.
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