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Random House Japanese-English English-Japanese Dictionary Paperback – April 7, 1997

ISBN-13: 978-0679780014 ISBN-10: 0679780017 Edition: Poc Blg

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Random House Japanese-English English-Japanese Dictionary + Japanese Hiragana & Katakana for Beginners: First Steps to Mastering the Japanese Writing System (CD-ROM Included) + Japanese Vocabulary (Quickstudy: Academic)
Price for all three: $23.50

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 688 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Reference; Poc Blg edition (April 7, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679780017
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679780014
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 1.4 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (139 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,926 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

It was a really helpful tool for me. I don't speak Japanese or any other second langauge for that matter but didn't want to appear as the "Ugly American" who only speaks English and makes no attempts at the native tongue when abroad. In fact I will now use all of the lanuage dictionaries when taking a vacation, it can't hurt. --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

From the Inside Flap

This dictionary is designed for non-native speakers of Japanese, perfect for business people and students. There are over 50,000 entries, including the most common meanings. Japanese terms are shown in romanized Japanese and standard Japanese characters. The romanized entries are listed in alphabetical order, so no knowledge of Japanese is required.

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Customer Reviews

I would highly recommend this to any beginners.
Amazon Customer
With romanization of Japanese words in English and Calligraphy characters next to the translations.
Robert W Bruso
Very clear dictionary with a lot of words and their definitions.
Tak Brun

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

46 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Fung on March 19, 2003
Format: Paperback
As a Japanese language student, I found this dictionary to be a very useful tool in the beginning stages of learning Japanese. Most likely, the beginning student will learn to associate Japanese phrases with their respective Romanizations instead of thinking in Japanese script. For this reason, this dictionary is a good tool to help transition students from thinking in romanji to the respective Japanese scripts (hiragana, katakana and kanji).
I have found this dictionary quite useful when I studied the Japanese language during my first year in high school. However, after I began associating Japanese phrases and words with hiragana, I began using a dictionary that allowed me to search words in the hiragana script (a,i,u,e,o,ka,ki,ku...ra,wa,wo). It was difficult to go back to this Romanized dictionary.
As this dictionary is not exclusively Japanese to English or English to Japanese, this dictionary compromises its comprehensiveness. I have found that this dictionary doesn't include many more advanced or classical Japanese words and phrases that may be found in Japanese newspapers or official documents.
Yet, if you are a beginning Japanese student without any experience with Japanese script, this is a good start. However, if you are student who has more experience with the script, a better recommendation might be Kodansha's Furigana Japanese-English Dictionary or Kodansha's Furigana English-Japanese Dictionary.
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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 10, 1999
Format: Paperback
This dictionary is really thorough compared to Martin's Concise Japanese Dict." or "Basic Japanese-English Dict.", having 50 000 words compared to 19000 and 3000 words, respectively. There are even medical, scientific and technical words that, as a student at a technical course, I find really useful. The words are written in romaji and also normally in KANJI instead of KANA, which helps a lot. It is organized after the romaji spelling which makes it fast to find what you are looking for. Ok ... now to the less favourable sides of the book. First of all - WHY oh why are the books english and japanese parts not mirrored? I have occasionally stumbled upon words that are in the english-japanese part, but not the other way around. REALLY annoying. Secondly - why not print the verb type (I,II,III) instead of just stating "vb"? Not a lot of ink, but enormously helpful. Anyway, though it doesn't get full score, I still think it is the best dictionary of the three I have tried.
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74 of 83 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 4, 2000
Format: Paperback
I picked this book up at a local used book store to help with translating some manga (comics) for a friend. Upon bringing it home, though, I realized why the last person had gotten rid of it. While this is an EXCELLENT dictionary for translating english words to japanese (that part takes up almost 3/4 of the book), it's not worth it's weight in paper as anything else. The japanese to english section is small, incomplete, and basically pretty laughable. Many particles are completely omitted (leaving you wondering what the heck 'wa' does) as are many common nouns that you see everywhere. Also, try looking up jade (hisui) in the english - japanese section, it'll be there. But if you look up 'hisui' in the japanese - english section it wont be there. This happens to A LOT of words, very annoying... If you're only going to be using this book for english - japanese, go ahead and get it. Otherwise I recommend avoiding it unless you need a doorstop.
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41 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Zack Davisson HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 24, 2003
Format: Paperback
While there is no substitute for a good electronic dictionary, in terms of amount of vocabulary and compact convenience, this is probably the best paper Japanese/English English/Japanese dictionary available.
It is very easy to use, and contains most of the vocabulary needed for day to day interactions. It is too large to be easily portable, and so is more of a desk reference than an on-the-move book.
The only drawback is that the Japanese/English portion of the book catalogs words using romajii, instead of hiragana or katakana. The overall impact on this is laziness to those trying to learn Japanese. Gaining speed in kana is essential, and using a romanized dictionary will not help progress. The kanji is available for Japanese words, but are usually of small type.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 18, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Living in Tokyo, it`s been essential for me to have an effective translation dictionary. This one has filled the bill. True, it isn`t necessarially the best choice for beginners, but as you begin to explore Japanese more, this book will keep up with you. In my Japanese language class, this dictionary has pulled through for us when other students` dictionaries could not. The best feature is the easy-to-read Romaji (English spellings) that permit you to sound out the words without having to read Japanese. However, the Japanese is included also, meaning I`ll be able to continue learning with this book for quite some time.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By John Nolley II VINE VOICE on March 13, 2003
Format: Paperback
Novices and more advanced students and speakers of Japanese alike will find this a very handy reference to have on hand. Broken into two halves--one an English to Japanese dictionary and the other the reverse--the book allows students to easily locate whatever word they need.
The one "fault" is that the Japanese-English portion is in Romaji, or the English-letter representation of Japanese sounds, which can make locating some words difficult for a couple of reasons--first, readers may not know the pronounciation of a given word in kanji (which other books better address anyway); and second, Romanization methods differ, yielding some confusion over the proper "spelling" of a given word. Still, a student with some knowledge of grammar should be able to look up spoken, Romanized, or kana-ized words without much difficulty.
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