This is the continuation of the last article of the series: "Usage Of KataKana Part 5".
In the Part 1, we discussed about the basic katakana table.

 ア(a) イ(i) ウ(u) エ(e) オ(o)

 カ(ka) キ(ki) ク(ku) ケ(ke) コ(ko)

 サ(sa) シ(shi) ス(su) セ(se) ソ(so)

 タ(ta) チ(chi) ツ(tsu) テ(te) ト(to)

 ナ(na) ニ(ni) ヌ(nu) ネ(ne) ノ(no)

 ハ(ha) ヒ(hi) フ(fu) ヘ(he) ホ(ho)

 マ(ma) ミ(mi) ム(mu) メ(me) モ(mo)

 ヤ(ya)     ユ(yu)     ヨ(yo)

 ラ(ra) リ(ri) ル(ru) レ(re) ロ(ro)

 ワ(wa)             ヲ(wo)

And in the Part 2, we discussed about the additional table with Dakuten (濁点, cloudy tone mark).

 ガ(ga) ギ(gi) グ(gu) ゲ(ge) ゴ(go)

 ザ(za) ジ(ji) ズ(zu) ゼ(ze) ゾ(zo)

 ダ(da) ヂ(ji) ヅ(zu) デ(de) ド(do)

 バ(ba) ビ(bi) ブ(bu) ベ(be) ボ(bo)

And in the Part 3, we discussed about the additional table with Han-Dakuten (半濁点, half-cloudy tone mark).

 パ(pa) ピ(pi) プ(pu) ペ(pe) ポ(po)

And in the Part 4, we discussed about the prolonged mark (長音記号).

 ー(the pronunciation differs depending on which letter exists just before the mark)

And in the Part 5, we discussed about the ン, the n note of the word such as trans.


Following the table above, you can spell following words in Japanese.

English words Japanese pronunciation Katakana

London RonDon ロンドン

Panda Panda パンダ

Entry Entori- エントリー

Today, let's discuss about "small" Japanese charactors, ァ, ィ, ゥ, ェ, and ォ.

These are small variants of Katakanas ア(a), イ(i), ウ(u), エ(e), オ(o).

The "small" characters are to simulate some Western vowels with Katakana.

For example, let's think how you pronounce the word "file".
How would you write it with Katakana?

ハイル is not correct.
This katakana describes the pronunciation HAIRU.

フイル is not appropriate too.
This katakana describes the pronunciation FUIRU.

So we use small ァ to write this:
This kanakana describes the pronunciation FAIRU.
This is still not accurate, but nearest katakana to the English pronunciation.
(Note that Japanese doesn't have the seperate letters to describe RU and LU. The katakana ル is for both.)

The word Philharmony is described as フィルハーモニー in Katakana.
(Japanese pronunciation is FIRUHA-MONI-)

The word Tonight is desctibed as トゥナイト.
(Japanese pronunciation is TUNAITO)
(ツナイト is not appropriate. The pronunciation of the Katakana is Tsunaito.)

The word Chest is described as チェスト.
(Japanese pronunciation is CHESUTO)

The word Information is described インフォメーション.
(Japanese pronunciation is INFOME-SHON)

Oh, I used the small letter ョ that is not yet discussed, sorry.
Let's discuss about it together with ャ and ュ the next time.
(Two weeks lator.)
Bye for now!

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