Japanese Words/Phrases

A collection of popular words and phrases used on the internet based on Anime's and discussions in the forums.

Feel free to contribute to this list anytime you want.

Special Thanks to Kidd for the updated translations (discussion topic)

Japanese Japanese (Hiragana) English
Neko (neh-koh) 猫(ねこ) Cat
(Jah-neh) じゃね "see you later". used among friends
Arigatou 有難う(ありがとう) Thank You (Informal - do not use to elders)
Arigatou gozaimasu 有難うございます(ありがとうございます) Thank you very much. (Formal)
Domo ども Means "Thank you".
Sensei 先生(せんせい) Teacher, Doctor
Senpai 先輩(せんぱい) Within a group of people, the person who has more experience is referred to Senpai. An alumni of the school that you are attending, or have graduated before you. It is not limited to only school, can be used in work, or most any activities. Ex. In a class, upper classmen are referred to as senpai.
Oneesan (Oh-Neh-Sahn) お姉さん(おねえさん) Older Sister (Formal reference to older sister used by someone outside of your family. When referring to your own older sister to another person, you use Ane. This form is used to call older sisters within families, it can also be shortened to Nee-san, nee-chan, ane)
Oniisan (Oh-Nee-Sahn) お兄さん(おにいさん) Older Brother (Formal reference to older brother used by someone outside of your family. When referring to your own younger This form is used to call older brothers within families, it can also be shortened to Nii-san, nii-chan, ani)
Imoutosan (Ee-mou-toh-sahn) 妹さん(いもうとさん) Younger Sister (Formal reference to younger sister used by someone outside of your family. When referring to your own little sister to another person, you say, Imouto. Usually younger siblings are referred to by their names.)
Otoutosan (Oh-tou-toh-sahn) 弟さん(おとうとさん) Younger Brother (Formal reference to younger brother used by someone outside of your family. When referring to your own little brother to another person, you say, Otouto. Usually younger siblings are referred to by their names.)
(Moshi Moshi) もしもし Hello (over the phone). The previous entry in phrase section of manga masters was mushi mushi, mushi in Japanese means bug.
Daijoubu? 大丈夫(だいじょうぶ) Are you alright? (informal); the formal version is daijoubu desuka?
Ogenki desuka? お元気ですか?(おげんきですか) Polite way of asking "How are you?" Lit: Is your health well?
Genki desu 元気です(げんきです) I am healthy.
Hontou 本当(ごんとう) "Really." To make this a question, just lift your tone up into a question tone.
Baka 馬鹿(ばか) Stupid, idiot, fool
Kawaii 可愛い(かわいい) Cute
Nandesuka? 何ですか(なんですか) What is this? What is it? (Subject is not clearly stated, so the speaker could be asking about anything depending on context.) Shortened form spoken by men are used in the original phrases, Nanda? - What is it? Nani? - What is it? is used often by women (can be used by men as well). Also depending on the tonal inflections, nani could mean various things.
Urusai 煩い(うるさい) Annoying (Urusai, without subject, is directed at the listener, the speaker is telling the listener that the listener is annoying, thereby hinting to the listener to leave the speaker alone).
Gomen 御免(ごめん) I'm sorry (Informal)
Gomen nasai 御免なさい(ごめんなさい) I'm sorry, I beg your pardon(formal)
Ore 俺(おれ) I (masculine)(rough or arrogant-sounding)
Watashi 私(わたし) I (formal; used by men or women)
Watakushi 私(わたくし) I (formal)
僕(ぼく) I (used by men often)
Chotto (chot-toh) 一寸(ちょっと) Just a moment, just a little (of anything)
Chotto mate 一寸待て(ちょっとまて) Wait a moment!
Ke-ki (keh-eh-kee) ケーキ Cake
Dame (Dah-meh) 駄目(だめ) Useless
Yamete 止めて(やめて) Stop it (directed to the listener when the speaker wants them to stop. Yamero is another way to say this)
Iie (ee-eh) いいえ No
Hai (hah-ee) はい Yes
Sugoi 凄い(すごい) Amazing, awesome, great
Sugei すげい Incredible, great, awesome
Ne (sentence ending) indicates emphasis. When the speaker ends with ne, they are seeking agreement from the listener. It is so, hey, come on
Sumimasen 済みません(すみません) Sorry, excuse me, and depending on the circumstance, thank you.
Ike 行け(いけ) Go! (imperative)
Ryokai (yo-kai-e) 了解(りょうかい) Understood, comprehension, (on radio) roger
Suki (ski) 好き(すき) Literal: Like. The contemporary way to say love.
Daisuki (dyeski) 大好き(だいすき) Literal: Like very much. Can be used to say 'I love you' - Anata ga daisuki.
Oishii 美味しい(おいしい) Delicious
Hajimemashite 始めまして(はじめまして) Lit: It is my first time meeting you. It is nice to meet you.
Yoroshiku 宜しく(よろしく) well, best regards, please treat me favorablly
Douzo どうぞ Please, kindly (used to express allowing of an action. For example, when serving food to a guest at home, you gesture to the food and say "douzo" - shortened for please feel free to do [action])
Shoujo 少女(しょうじょ) Young Girl (A young girl's comic is called shoujo manga)
Shounen 少年(しょうねん) Young Boy (A young boy's comic is called shounen manga). A good example is the popular 'Shonen Jump' magazine, released weekly.
Zen Zen 全然(ぜんぜん) Not at all. (sometimes, it can be used to say "completely", "totally". It depends on context)
Nihon 日本 Japan
Nihongo 日本語 Japanese

Colours (色いろiro) in Japanese

Japanese Japanese (Hiragana) English
Shiroi 白い(しろい) White
Kuroi 黒い(くろい) Black
Chairoi 茶色い(ちゃいろい) Brown (lit: tea color)
Aoi (ah-oh-ee) 青い(あおい) Blue
Akai (ah-kah-ee) 赤い(あかい) Red
Kiiroi (kee-ee-roh-ee) 黄色い(きいろい) Yellow
Pinku ピンク Pink
Midori (me-doh-ree) 緑(みどり) Green
Murasaki (moo-rah-sah-kee) 紫(むらさき) Purple
Orenji (oh-ren-jee) オレンジ Orange

For Example (例れいrei)

Japanese Japanese (Hiragana) English
Ano tokei wa shiroi desu あの時計は白いです(あのとけいはしろいです) That clock is white.
Kono enpitsu wa aoi desu この鉛筆はあおいです(このえんぴつはあおいです) This pencil is blue.
Kanojo no kami wa akai desu 彼女の髪は赤いです(かのじょのかみはあかいです) Her hair is red.
Midori ki desu 緑木です(みどりきです) It is a green tree.
Pinku no no-to desu ピンクのノートです It's a pink notebook.
Orenji desu オレンジです It is an orange.
Murasaki kami no onna 紫髪の女(むらさきかみのおんな) A purple haired woman.