Hepburn romanization (ヘボン式ローマ字, Hebon-shiki Rōmaji, 'Hepburn-type Roman letters') is a system for the romanization of Japanese that uses the Latin alphabet to write the Japanese language. It is used by most foreigners learning to spell Japanese in the Latin alphabet and by the Japanese for romanizing personal names, geographical locations, and other information such as train tables, road signs, and official communications with foreign countries. Largely based on English writing conventions, consonants closely correspond to the English pronunciation and vowels approximate the Italian pronunciation.The Hepburn style (Hebon-shiki) was developed in the late 19th century by an international commission that was formed to develop a unified system of romanization. The commission's romanization scheme was popularized by the wide dissemination of a Japanese–English dictionary by commission member and American missionary James Curtis Hepburn which was published in 1886. The "modified Hepburn system" (shūsei Hebon-shiki), also known as the "standard system" (Hyōjun-shiki), was published in 1908 with revisions by Kanō Jigorō and the Society for the Propagation of Romanization (Romaji-Hirome-kai).Although Kunrei romanization is officially favored by the Japanese government today, Hepburn romanization is still in use and remains the worldwide standard. The Hepburn style is regarded as the best way to render Japanese pronunciation for Westerners. Since it is based on English and Italian pronunciations, people who speak English or Romance languages (e.g., Italian, French, Portuguese and Spanish) will generally be more accurate in pronouncing unfamiliar Japanese words romanized in the Hepburn style compared to Nihon-shiki romanization and Kunrei-shiki romanization.Nihon-shiki romanization
Nihon-shiki, or Nippon-shiki Rōmaji (Japanese: 日本式ローマ字, "Japan-style," romanized as Nihon-siki or Nippon-siki in Nippon-shiki itself), is a romanization system for transliterating the Japanese language into the Latin alphabet. In discussion about romaji, it is abbreviated as Nihon-shiki or Nippon-shiki. Among the major romanization systems for Japanese, it is the most regular one and has a one-to-one relation to the kana writing system.Romanization of Armenian
There are various systems of romanization of the Armenian alphabet.Romanization of Japanese
The romanization of Japanese is the use of Latin script to write the Japanese language. This method of writing is sometimes referred to in Japanese as rōmaji (ローマ字, literally, "Roman letters") ([ɾoːmaꜜʑi] (listen). There are several different romanization systems. The three main ones are Hepburn romanization, Kunrei-shiki romanization (ISO 3602), and Nihon-shiki romanization (ISO 3602 Strict). Variants of the Hepburn system are the most widely used.
Japanese is normally written in a combination of logographic characters borrowed from Chinese (kanji) and syllabic scripts (kana) that also ultimately derive from Chinese characters. Rōmaji may be used in any context where Japanese text is targeted at non-Japanese speakers who cannot read kanji or kana, such as for names on street signs and passports, and in dictionaries and textbooks for foreign learners of the language. It is also used to transliterate Japanese terms in text written in English (or other languages that use the Latin script) on topics related to Japan, such as linguistics, literature, history, and culture. Rōmaji is the most common way to input Japanese into word processors and computers, and may also be used to display Japanese on devices that do not support the display of Japanese characters.
All Japanese who have attended elementary school since World War II have been taught to read and write romanized Japanese. Therefore, almost all Japanese are able to read and write Japanese using rōmaji, although it is extremely rare in Japan to use this method to write Japanese (except as an input tool on a computer or for special purposes like in some logo design), and most Japanese are more comfortable reading kanji and kana.
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