Kanji Tip 20: 津波 (tsunami)

This time’s Kanji Tip doesn’t have a very pleasant meaning, but it is indeed interesting to acknowledge its origin!

Read “tsunami”, the first kanji 津 (tsu) has the meaning of “port” or “harbor”, and the second kanji 波 (nami) means “wave”, so you can think of the whole meaning as “a wave that attacks ports”!

There is also another theory (although not so supported) that says that 津波 (つなみ, tsunami) comes from 強波 (つよなみ, tsuyonami), which means “strong wave”.

More kanji tips soon!


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