Sign in to follow this  
Asashosakari

pronunciation question

Recommended Posts

This is sort of sumo-related, but I think it's better in this subforum than Ozumo discussions. Feel free to move though if necessary.

I looked at the whole Oka/Ouka shikona controversy from last basho's banzuke release again today, and I'm now wondering: Is there an actual difference in pronunciation between words that are transcribed in kana with おお (oo) and those with おう (ou), particularly at the beginning of a word? I'm asking because the Kyokai transcribes them differently into romaji, using a simple "o" for the former, but "ou" for the latter, even though they are using simplified romaji for everything else.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This is sort of sumo-related, but I think it's better in this subforum than Ozumo discussions. Feel free to move though if necessary.

I looked at the whole Oka/Ouka shikona controversy from last basho's banzuke release again today, and I'm now wondering: Is there an actual difference in pronunciation between words that are transcribed in kana with おお (oo) and those with おう (ou), particularly at the beginning of a word? I'm asking because the Kyokai transcribes them differently into romaji, using a simple "o" for the former, but "ou" for the latter, even though they are using simplified romaji for everything else.

Where did you see that? I'm really curious. The Kyokai transcribes them both to o, as Kaiou easily demonstrates. Also at the beginning, as in Otsukasa which also is ou. Unless you mean a case like Tosan-o-u-mi, which indeed is ou in hiragana, but belongs to different kanji. To your original question, I don't think the pronounciation is different.

Edit: Ah, I see you mean the Ouka case. Well, I guess this is a one-off to get him different from the hill-type Oka. Show me another case...

Edited by Doitsuyama

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No, there is no pronunciation difference. It merely denotes the lengthened vowel, and whether that is done by having two 'o' sounds, or the lengthening of the 'o' sound by an 'u' character. The distinction between the two (in these cases) is to do with the reading of the kanji. Certain kanji must take and 'oo' reading and written in this way if transcribed into hiragana. One of the most obvious is the kanji for big, which is rendered as 'oo' in its kun-yomi reading (eg. Oosaka, not Ousaka). Most others are the 'ou' version of the sound and are always transcribed with a 'u' after the 'o'. Clear as mud!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Edit: Ah, I see you mean the Ouka case. Well, I guess this is a one-off to get him different from the hill-type Oka. Show me another case...

Ounomatsu-beya

Ounowaka

Ounoyama

Hmm, now I see that Ouka seems to be the only non-Onomatsu-beya rikishi who is affected by this...interesting. However, even there it's not completely consistent, witness retired Ounofuji (and about half a dozen more), but also Ominami, all with the same 'o' kanji (which isn't used by anyone else in Ozumo, it seems, except Amuru).

The one way that Ominami differs from the others is that they're all Ono's (or rather, Ouno's). But that isn't done consistently either, since there's Miyagino-beya's Onofuji, admittedly with a different 'o' kanji (but still transcribed 'ou' in kana).

Maybe it's just a run-away exception with the Onomatsu guys, and as you're saying, the Ouka case is a second, more recent exception because of the other Oka.

Incidentally, did you see that Ouka's shikona change order is 宮島→桜花 in the Japanese profile, but Miyajima - Oka - Ouka on the English side? Rather weird. (They didn't note a shikona change when they adjusted their transcription from Kanbayashi to Kambayashi last year, nor any other n->m change.)

Edit: I just realized that Kofuji's July 2003 dump of the Kyokai database still had Ounowaka and Ounoyama as Onowaka and Onoyama (but already Ounomatsu-beya), so they possibly changed over all of these at some point in the last 2 years only. And also, it looks like Ominami is not listed as Ouminami as a result of being transcribed おお on the Japanese side (so the oo => o romanization kicked in), despite having the same kanji that is Ou for all others.

The distinction between the two (in these cases) is to do with the reading of the kanji. Certain kanji must take and 'oo' reading and written in this way if transcribed into hiragana. One of the most obvious is the kanji for big, which is rendered as 'oo' in its kun-yomi reading (eg. Oosaka, not Ousaka). Most others are the 'ou' version of the sound and are always transcribed with a 'u' after the 'o'. Clear as mud!

Thanks. It doesn't satisfy my desire for logic, but "it just has to be done this way for different kanji" at least explains why some take oo and others ou, because that's what had me puzzled a bit, too.

Edited by Asashosakari

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah yes, the Ounomatsu case is really different. Well, it really seems to be a special case with 阿武 (Ouno) and I'd suspect the pronunciation is different here, but I really don't know. 阿 has a reading o and 武 has a reading u. The 'no' is omitted in kanji as it sometimes happens, like in Dewanoumi prominently. So Ounomatsu actually is o-u-no-matsu which justifies transcribing it ou and lets me suspect a different pronunciation (like in Tosanoumi).

Edit: Onofuji is clearly a long o, actually the same kanji as in Ouka. Ominami is curious. It does have the 阿武 part at the beginning, but hiragana for this is おお. 武 also has a reading o, so the kanji readings seem to be o-o-minami, which again would justify transcribing him as Oominami.

Then again, there ARE two-kanji-combinations with their own readings, not covered by single readings (like Hayate in Hayateumi). Unlikely, but maybe this ou and oo really is a long o and not o-u or o-o due to such a special two kanji reading rule...

Edited by Doitsuyama

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ah yes, the Ounomatsu case is really different. Well, it really seems to be a special case with 阿武 (Ouno) and I'd suspect the pronunciation is different here, but I really don't know. 阿 has a reading o and 武 has a reading u. The 'no' is omitted in kanji as it sometimes happens, like in Dewanoumi prominently. So Ounomatsu actually is o-u-no-matsu which justifies transcribing it ou and lets me suspect a different pronunciation (like in Tosanoumi).

I disagree with that, sir. Ounomatsu is pronounced just like Ooshima. The o-u is never, AFAIK, PRONOUNCED that way when the O is the first letter. Tosanoumi, Dewanoumi, etc.. are the cases where it is. It usually happens when the part starting with a "U" is also where the kanji starts (umi, uchi, etc..) Still, the fact that the "U" in Ounomatsu gets its own kanji is baffling..

Disclaimer - This is by no means anything I know, it's just a gut feeling.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Too bad Kintamayama's Audio Banzuke doesn't hit the lower ranks.  It'd solve all (Neener, neener...)

Even if I did (which I don't, and I won't..), the pronounciation is similar, if not the same. Best way to check is to listen to the announcer whehn he mentions Ounomatsu-beya. no different from Ooshima or Oodarling.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Incidentally, did you see that Ouka's shikona change order is 宮島→桜花 in the Japanese profile, but Miyajima - Oka - Ouka on the English side? Rather weird.

Since I don't think about these things consciously, I take this one to be a simple case of not causing any confusion with the identical rendering of two different shikonas.

As there was a new guy coming in with "Oka" as in a hill, they just changed the cherry flower guy to Ouka which could be read that way while the hill one, it won't get pronounced "Ouka" at all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know quite little about the subject, but I have always wondered about the whole "o", "Oh", "oo" & "ou" thing around here.

Kaiou, reads to me pretty much like, say "Calliou" (the cartoon), or maybe Kai-oo, or even Kai-you. But as I have understood the pronunciation, it should be more like Kai-O, like in "gO"

But, then a different one like Tosanoumi, seems a pretty good translation, because it sounds to me when spoken like Tosa-no-OOmi, as in "rOOt"

Anyway, what's the deal with this spelling things that sound like "Oh" to read like "Ooooo..." (like "you")

maybe that's just dragging up an old something that everyone else already talked about...

anyway...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I know quite little about the subject, but I have always wondered about the whole "o", "Oh", "oo" & "ou" thing around here.

Kaiou, reads to me pretty much like, say "Calliou" (the cartoon), or maybe Kai-oo, or even Kai-you.  But as I have understood the pronunciation, it should be more like Kai-O, like in "gO" 

But, then a different one like Tosanoumi, seems a pretty good translation, because it sounds to me when spoken like Tosa-no-OOmi, as in "rOOt"

Anyway, what's the deal with this spelling things that sound like "Oh" to read like "Ooooo..." (like "you")

maybe that's just dragging up an old something that everyone else already talked about...

anyway...

Maybe that's just me but your remarks let me think you don't know of any other language than English and Japanese on the world. Using English pronounciation rules as guideline for transcriptions (like you did throughout your post) is ill-advised, I think. You know, there are more languages on the world and the transcription should be usable in any language.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this