Quiz about Japanese Kanji Fun
Quiz about Japanese Kanji Fun

Japanese Kanji Fun Trivia Quiz


This quiz does not require an understanding of the Japanese language, just a little creative thought. Since the exact translation often varies, I used "The Kodansha Kanji Learner's Dictionary" for uniformity.

A multiple-choice quiz by niigatajin. Estimated time: 4 mins.
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Author
niigatajin
Time
4 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
182,602
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Tough
Avg Score
6 / 10
Plays
1627
Awards
Top 35% Quiz
Last 3 plays: Guest 70 (10/10), Guest 76 (4/10), Guest 173 (9/10).
This quiz has 2 formats: you can play it as a or as shown below.
Scroll down to the bottom for the answer key.
1. In Japanese, the word 'Japan' is 'Nihon'. It is composed of two kanjis. The second kanji means 'origin'. What is the meaning of the first kanji? Hint

Life
Sun
Spirit
Truth

2. 'Ongaku' means 'music'. The first kanji means 'sound'. What is the meaning of the second kanji? Hint

Song
Fine
Human
Enjoyment

3. The word 'bicycle' in Japanese contains three kanjis. Which of the following kanji meanings will you not find in this word? Hint

Self
Vehicle
Turn
Two

4. Which color kanji meaning is used in the word for 'baby'? Hint

Blue
Red
Pink
White

5. Which of the following kanji meanings are shared by the words 'telephone' and 'train' in Japanese? Hint

Electricity
Far
Modern
Fast

6. In Japan, 'hanabi' is a firework. The second kanji means 'fire'. What is the meaning of the first kanji? Hint

Enjoyment
Night
Flower
Power

7. Which of the following words does not share a kanji with the other three? Hint

Student
Organism
Birth
World

8. Which of the following words do not use the kanji meaning 'white'? Hint

Sugar
Confession
Swan
Blank Ballot

9. In the school system, which of the following kanji meanings is not used to indicate a school's level? Hint

Middle
High
Big
Low

10. Which of the following kanji meanings is used to indicate the United States of America? (Hint: It's not what you think.) Hint

King
Distinguished
Rice
Middle


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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. In Japanese, the word 'Japan' is 'Nihon'. It is composed of two kanjis. The second kanji means 'origin'. What is the meaning of the first kanji?

Answer: Sun

So in other words, Japan means 'origin of the sun'. This is also the meaning behind the Japanese flag. The kanji for sun also is used for 'day', and it is the most commonly used kanji in Japanese.
2. 'Ongaku' means 'music'. The first kanji means 'sound'. What is the meaning of the second kanji?

Answer: Enjoyment

Alone this kanji can be used in the verb, 'tanoshimu', which means to 'enjoy (oneself)'. If you are having an enjoyable time, you can tell your Japanese friends, "Tanoshimi".
3. The word 'bicycle' in Japanese contains three kanjis. Which of the following kanji meanings will you not find in this word?

Answer: Two

'Bicycle' is written in this order: 'self', 'turn', 'vehicle'. It is pronounced 'jitensha'. Of special note, the Japanese have borrowed the word 'baiku', but the meaning has changed to 'motorbike' or 'motorcycle'.
4. Which color kanji meaning is used in the word for 'baby'?

Answer: Red

'Akachan' is what most people call a baby in Japan. 'Chan' is a common suffix added to girls' names. 'Kun' is often added to boys' names. However, both are called 'akachan' for a baby.
5. Which of the following kanji meanings are shared by the words 'telephone' and 'train' in Japanese?

Answer: Electricity

The two kanjis in the word 'telephone' mean 'electricity speak' and is pronounced 'denwa'. 'Densha' is the word for 'train'. The meanings of the two kanjis are 'electricity' and 'vehicle'.
6. In Japan, 'hanabi' is a firework. The second kanji means 'fire'. What is the meaning of the first kanji?

Answer: Flower

The meaning of 'hanabi' is 'flower fire'. Fireworks are popular in the summer and are often seen at the city festivals.
7. Which of the following words does not share a kanji with the other three?

Answer: World

This is a special kanji with many meanings. It is ranked 34th in language usage. Its usual meanings are 'life', 'be born', and 'student'. It is also used in the word 'sensei', referring to a teacher, doctor, and other people of certain occupations.
8. Which of the following words do not use the kanji meaning 'white'?

Answer: Sugar

The word for 'sugar' is composed of two kanjis, meaning 'sandy, granular' and 'sugar'. It is pronounced 'satou'.
9. In the school system, which of the following kanji meanings is not used to indicate a school's level?

Answer: Low

The kanji meaning 'middle' is used for junior high school. The kanji meaning 'high' indicates senior high school. The kanji meaning 'big' is used for university. For elementary school, the kanji meaning 'small' is used.
10. Which of the following kanji meanings is used to indicate the United States of America? (Hint: It's not what you think.)

Answer: Rice

A rather ironic kanji coming from a country of rice-eaters, but I believe that is linked mostly to the pronunciation. The 'distinguished country' is England. The 'middle country' is China. The 'king country' is Saudi Arabia. Hope you enjoyed my quiz.
Source: Author niigatajin

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor thejazzkickazz before going online.
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Jan 30 2023 : Guest 70: 10/10
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