Popular words and/or phrases using this kanji: Click any individual kanji to view it in a new window. Click the [K] after each definition to look up that character at WWWJDIC; Click the [D] to look up that word in WWWJDIC (the definition is the same but other features exist, like sample usage, variations of the word, etc.)
真っ青 [まっさお] (adj-na,n) deep blue; ghastly pale [K][D]
The SOD image used on this page is from the New Japanese-English Character Dictionary and the Kodansha Kanji Learners Dictionary (see http://www.kanji.org), and is used with the kind permission of Mr. Jack Halpern. This image must not be copied or used elsewhere without Mr Halpern's permission. Use of this image without permission is a violation of copyright laws.
The Henshall Mnemonics are the copyright of Tuttle Publishing and are the result of the hard work by Professor Henshall. See the list I used here.
Notes: Introducing は 'wa' and です。'desu.' the particle は marks the topic. (Remember particles attach to the word which they follow, and that when は is a particle it is pronounced wa.) です。functions like 'is' or 'topic is.'
Is pronounced as 'wah'. は a subject or topic marker. は can appear as ha, or wa in romaji depending on the system used.
The kana used for は is usually pronounced as 'hah', but pronounced as 'wah' when used as a particle. The same phenomenon happens in the word 'dewa/deha' では in the negative conjugation of the verb desu.
Other notes: In yakuza speech, は、becomes や (yah). Typically, the y sound is softened such that it sounds like 'ah' Example: Ore ha --turns to-> Ore ya --but sounds like-> Ore a
Examples: Note: visit WWWJDIC to lookup any unknown words found in the example(s)... Alternatively, view this page on POPjisyo.com or Rikai.com
田中さんは大学生です。[ tanakasan hadaigakusei desu] [ex #623] Mr. Tanaka is a university student.
私はマイケルです。 [ex #5241] I am Michael.
林檎は緑です。[ringo ha midori desu.] [ex #5891] The apple is green.
皆さんは何処ですか？ みんなさんはどこですか？ [ex #7818] Where is everyone from? Minna san wa doko desu ka?
私はアメリカ人です。 わたしはアメリカじんです。 [ex #7819] I am American. Watashi wa amerikanjin desu.
私たちは火星人です。わたしたちはかせいじんです。 [ex #7820] We are Martians. Watashi tachi wa kaseijin desu.
See here and here for two very interesting Japanese pages on using ha vs. ga (contributor: Amatuka)
When to use は vs が? Both sentences like 雨は降っている。[ame ha futteiru] and 雨が降っている。[ame ga futteiru] are valid, so working out when to use which form is a tricky point.
First: In answering a question such as Q. 机の上に何がありますか。[tsukue no ue ni nani ga arimasu ka] A. 鉛筆があります。[enpitsu ga arimasu]. Here が is used. (contributor: Amatuka)
On the other hand if attention has been placed on something in advance and the question is asked with that object as the topic... Q. 本はどこにありますか。[hon ha doko ni arimasu ka.] A. 本はイスの下にあります。[hon ha isu no shita ni arimasu] then は is used. (contributor: Amatuka)
が is also used to indicate a specific choice. 私が行きます。[watashi ga ikimasu] _I'll_ go. (not any of the other possibilities). (contributor: Amatuka)
は is used for contrastative sentences (see ha-2). For example normally you'd say 犬が好きです。[inu ga suki desu] I like dogs. However if you want to contrast how you feel about dogs with how you feel about other animals then 犬は好きだが、猫はどうも・・・[inu ha suki da ga, neko ha doumo ...] I like _dogs_ but I really don't (get on with) cats. (contributor: Amatuka)
は [ha / wa] follows a noun or a noun phrase. (e.g. 犬は [inu ha] 'as for dogs' 知るのは [shiru no ha] 'as for what (I) know' The latter case の nominalizes (turns into a noun) 知る)
N = noun (contributor: Amatuka)
In [ex #7818], shouldnt it be: 皆さんはからどこですか? Or から皆さんはどこですか？ Wouldnt ex #7818 just mean 'Where is everyone'? Im no Japanese grammar expert but doesnt から mean from? And shouldnt から be used in ex #7818? (contributor: deedrio)
くらい (ばかり and くらい also means 'about' when they are used with a number and a counter. The difference among the three is that ばかり and ひど can be used with an exact number or amount of something, whereas くらい cannot.
を契機に is very formal. also see ついでに - much more common in real speech (contributor: dc)
You are entirely correct. BTW, 中国に 行ったの を景気に should be corrected to read: 中国に 行ったの を契機に. Japanese is cursed with too many homonyms and heavily reliant on kanji, as you know. However, Japanese also benefits from it. What other language would have such simple and effective device to identify intercalary months as 西向く武士（にしむくさむらい）? (contributor: bamboo4)