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Recommended Japanese/English dictionary


3 Mar 2004
Can anyone recommend a really good printed Japanese/English dictionary?.
I have a small pocket Oxford dictionary which is good in the sense that it is written in hiragana which forces me to learn :emoji_thumbsup: , but it does not have a very large list of words.
I'd recommend the Furigana dictionaries by Kodansha. They allow lookup in alphabetic/kana order (depending on which one you get - you can get Japanese->English and English->Japanese). Kanji are given when appropriate, and you get the little furigana characters above each kanji, so reading them is child's play if you don't know them. I've actually used the Japanese->English dictionary quite a lot, purely as a kana->kanji reference.

I think the word count is approximately 20,000 words - but you'll want to check before you buy. Have a look on Amazon.

I would personally like to get an electronic dictionary - the Casio XD-H9100 looks quite nice, although I can't seem to find anyone who will ship it to the UK. I'm a bit tired of carrying lots of dead wood around - even if it is reference material. :)
Thanks for the feedback. :) Luckily that is the dictionary I ended up buying. I got the Kodansha's Furigana japanses/english english/japanese version. Much better than the little pocket Oxfor I had before.
Well, the Kenkyusha dictionaries would. But, you know, it's not very portable... Got one of them for christmas a while back, unfortunately it was the english-japanese, not the other way around (which I wanted more). Still, pretty much the definitive dictionary, short of specialised topics.

I think there's about 100,000 words in the english-japanese (Kenkyusha New English-Japanese, 7th ed?), and slightly less (95,000?) in the Japanese-English.
Hrm. Strike that. The Kenkyusha New English-Japanese Dictionary lists 80,000 words, with 160,000 derivative phrases and expressions. Probably the closest to what you want though :)
The Kenkyusha Japanese-English dictionary is not available in Amazon.com,where I buy learning materials.

for a kanji dictionary, I highly recommend The Kodansha Kanji Learners Dictionary it covers 2,230 different kanji including all jouyou and jimei kanji lists, it also includes 41,000 compounds. Its lookup system is very easy to master, After few days I was able to find any kanji in less than 17 seconds...( there are 6 ways to lookup)
Well, I think it's sad that you're letting your choice be limited by what's available only at one specific site.

Ask around, you'll quickly learn that the big Kenkyusha dics are what anyone into serious translation work uses. They're that much more complete and useful. My Random House WaEi/EiWa gives me 4 translations for the word "love", and translations for the expressions "fall in love", "be in love", "make love". This is 10 lines, half as wide as a page (2 columns). The dictionary has 50,000+ entries. Still, when I look up love in Kenkyusha, there's a LOT more. The dictionary has standard 8.5x11in pages, with text just as small as my smaller dictionary. 3 columns per page. "Love" takes up a full column and then a bit more. A huge number of definitions, including "love and hate", "the love between a husband and child", "a mother's love for her children", "love for one's country", "one's first love", "love at first sight", "love all 0" (tennis term), "fall in love", "for love", "for love or money", "for the love of...", "out of love with", "lord love you", "love me, love my dog", and dozens more I skipped over.

There's just no comparison. Kenkyusha is the one big dictionary you need for reference (well, two, since the WaEi and the EiWa are different volumes :)). Combine with a small lookup dic (my random house one is nice), a kanji dic, and some tools on the computer, and you've pretty much got all you need. Kenkyusha has a bunch of scientific and technical translations. My Random-House certainly doesn't have translations for Menispermaceae (not that I use that often ... hehe)...
けんきゅうしゃじてんは とてもいいみたいね。

I just received Kodansha's Furigana Japanese-English/English-Japanese dictionary from my uncle for my birthday. I really like it. While I might one day want to get the bigger Kenkyusha dictionary, I think this one will serve me well for now.

My dad also gave me a reference book he used when he learned Japanese back in the 70s. It's called "501 Japanese Verbs" and lists the full range of conjugation for each of the verbs. It's a pretty impressive volume.


I swear by the Kenkyushas. Though I can find most in the electronic Kenkyusha's chuujitens on my computer. Try and get your hands on that wonderful piece of software by Fujitsu. It's a combination of the Kojien, the Gendai Yogo jiten and the Kenkyusha ei-wa/wa-ei chuu jitens. Used you can probably get one for around 5,000 yen. (roughly 55 USD).
Hmm... Is that Fujitsu's スーパー統合辞書 (super tougoujisho)? Certainly looks interesting... Any idea where to buy it used (preferably over the net)? Yahoo auctions japan is an option, but I'm wondering about others.
"Oxford Starter - Japanese Dictionary" is the one i use and i think it rocks!! dont have anything to compare with but i think the one's people have wrote here to is also good ^^
I have "Oxford Starter - Japanese Dictionary", too. its very limited and a lot of words are not included. it may contain no more than 5000 words in both E-J and J-E sections. it still helps me alot but I also need another dictionary.
I am thinking of ordering an e-dictionary
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