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Yojijukugo ---  Four-Character-Idiom
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Yojijukugo ---  Four-Character-Idiom


Yojijukugo is a Japanese idiom consisted of four kanji. Many are based on the ideas of Chinese traditions or classical texts.

In other words, you can also say that yojijukugo is a piece of art, of building up four kanji with individual meanings into one phrase with one meaning. As compared to the number of characters the information they carry is so much bigger, and because it can help smoothening communication between people who know the word yojijukugo is often used for promo words. There are even some new yojijukugo invented by copywriters.

I sometimes see non-Japanese people with yojijukugo tatoos, but there are some that makes me wonder if they really know the meaning.
So here, I will introduce you some yojijukugo that have good meanings and good appearance.

Ichinichi-Ichizen [one good per day]


"ichi"=one "nichi"=day "ichi"=one "zen"=good

Like "rensen-renshou" we featured the other day, this idiom also has a good rhythm and deep meaning by using "ichi" twice. "Ichinichi" literally means one day, and "ichizen" means one good thing / act. It means that although doing good to others may not always be easy, try to do one good everyday. It doesn't have to be great things, but the act itself is important.

Kanzen-Chouaku [be good and punish bad]


"kan"=to encourage, recommend "zen"=good "chou"=to punish, to chasten "aku"=bad, evil

"Kanzen" is to advise to do good, and "chouaku" on the other hand means to punish the bad.
Thus literally means to encourage good and punish bad behaviors.

Kishou-Tenketsu [quick get away, build up, climax, ending]


"ki"=to wake up, to initiate "shou"=to lead (in succession to the previous story)
"ten"=to roll over, to flip an argument "ketsu"=to conclude, result

Each of the kanji used in this idiom holds significant meaning, therefore this idiom develops a meaning without separating the four kanji into two-charactered-words. In Japanese composition, it is said to be ideal to write sentences based on this structure.

Taiki-Bansei [great talents mature late]


"tai"=big, grand, great "ki"=vessel "ban"=night, late "sei"=to become complete, to finish

"Taiki" means a large vessel as describes the kanji, and "bansei" means to make a great accomplishment late in your life, as "ban" originally means late in the day. What it says is that good, large vessels cannot be made quicky, and like this a true master develops his/her talents in his/her early ages and bloom at once later in his/her life.

Yuushuu-Kambi [a complete and beautiful end]


"Yuu"=to be there, to have, to exist "shuu"=end, to finish
"kan"=to complete, perfection, to be perfect "bi"=beauty, beautiful

"Yuushuu" is to achieve a goal or creation in a complete manner, and "kambi" means perfect beauty. Hence the idiom means that,
1) whatever it is the end is important, and
2) it is very important to accomplish something to the very end.


I'd like to continue introducing you yojijukugo with good meanings and cool appearance.
Or if you have any questions, like, "what does my tatoo really mean?", don't hesitate to give us an e-mail :-)

Of course, we still welcome those who want to have their names converted in kanji. Just e-mail to samurai@jmode.co.jp


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