Typesetting Kanji, Hiragana, and Katakana 01: “Three Types of Character”

The basic of the current Japanese notations is “written in kanji and kana” in which the three character types of kanji, hiragana, and katakana are used in mixture. Kanji is an ideogram originating in China. Borrowing only sounds from kanji, hiragana and katakana, which are phonograms specific to Japan, were created. Cursively written kanji is hiragana, and parts taken from kanji are katakana – each has a different origin. In addition to these three character types, the Latin alphabet is used for English words, names, etc. Often, there is a mixed notation of all four character types.


Series archive Typesetting Japanese / Typesetting Kanji, Hiragana, and Katakana