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Japanese dictionary


30 Mar 2003
Hajimemashite fellow friends of Japan Reference.

I've been studying Japanese for the last few months and would like to know if you could indicate any good Japanese-English and Japanese-Japanese dictionaries. Also, I'd appreciate if you could suggest me a nice Japanese grammar, like Cambridge's English G.

My best regards,

Marc- I have used the Random House "Japanese-English, English-Japanese Dictionary" for years. It was my first... (sigh).It is fantastic as you can look up words in the roman alphabet, or English, and it gives you both the kanji and how to read it. IMHO it is simply the best out there for those just picking up the language. ISBN -0679441492 Good luck!
Thanks everyone, I'll look for those titles.
Just one more question: would you have any suggestions of non-romanji dictionary? It took me a long time to get used to kana and a romanji dictionary would just slow my learning process.
Thanks anyway, I really appreciate your help.
I recommend the use of an electronic dictionary. They are much more convenient than paper versions. First it only takes 2 seconds to find the word you are looking for, you can cary it everywhere like a pocket dictionary, but it contains more and also gives plenty of examples, and last but not least with the Canon ones (only, it seems) you can also click on a kanji you don't know to get all it's reading and meanings, something that is impossible with a paper dictionary.

There are other advantages ; you can save 100 words in memory to memorise them later (and don't need a pen with you every time you check a word), the dictionary automatically keep the last 20 words checked in another memory list. Then, there are at least 4 dictionary in one (eng-jap, jap-eng, jap-jap, kanji), sometimes including also thesaurus (jap-jap or eng-eng) and katakana dictionary. Finally, finding a kanji is much simpler and quicker ; one just has to input the reading or number of strokes and that's it.

I use the Canon IDF-3000, which is actually one of the cheapest of its kind (10.000yen), but I am entirely satisfied.

For online dictionaries, I recommend Jim Breen's dictionary which is extremely complete (but lack examples)
I second the recommendation for Jim Breen's website. It is an incredible resource that's 100% free! If you have web access whenever you need some assistance, it'd be your best option.

Maciamo: That Canon looks nice. I'll probably end up picking one up. I love gadgets... 😄
I started with a Kenkyusha Japanese-English dictionary which was good. It has useful examples on the bottom of each page. It wasn't super small but was portable enough to carry to school. It was published for the Japanese market. After I got my first Wordtank about 8 years ago, though, I almost never touched my paper dictionaries. When I'm on my computer I usually use EDICT or goo辞書 - 国語・英語・四字熟語・中国語のオンライン辞書
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