The city Tokyo was sometimes called Tokio, as deserve to be viewed in ngrams, and also as one example, the WWII anti-Japanese movie Tokio Jokio.

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Why was Tokyo sometimes called "Tokiyo"?

The Japanese hiragana for Tokyo is とうきょう, and according to Wikipedia"s short article on the romanisation of Japanese, the "きょ" component would be romanised, under every one of the Hepburn, Nihon-shiki, and also Kunrei-shiki systems as "kyo".

The section on historic romanisations has actually "kio" as a romanisation of "きょ", yet that was a romanisation argued in the 1600s. Were those romanisation schemes still in use in the 1nine century, for a city recalled in 1868?


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edited Dec 6 "14 at 2:58
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tchrist♦
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Andrew GrimmAnattracted Grimm
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The name Tokyo is stood for by two characters in Japanese: 東京 and also the syllables (some fussy linguists insist those be called morae) used to sound those out are four: とうきょう or to-u-k-u. Japanese is an isochronous language, meaning eexceptionally syllable hregarding be expressed as a (about equivalent) duration in time; whatever before you speak to that duration, Tokyo has 4 beats in Japanese yet three in slrfc.org.

Note that the third syllable, which generally represents the sound ki, has a tiny subscript yo alongside it. This is exactly how the Japanese introduce what is essentially a y-glide in between the consonant and also vowel sounds of particular syllables, bereason no single character in the syllabary deserve to be used to express those sounds without developing another syllable.

I simply asked my wife"s aunt, who is Japanese and also taught Japanese to college students, around the oddround spelling you suggest out. She explains that some renderings of Tokyo were provided as Tokiyo as a method of bringing the ょ across in the transliteration. This is non-typical, yet, and must be avoided, given that a lot of slrfc.org readers hardly treatment about the phonological representation of such an abstruse issue as this.

Additional note: The u sounds in the original Japanese, coming at the finish of rounded vowels, are almost entirely dispertained to by Western ears. Syllable duration isn"t encoded for interpretation to our ears, so those u sounds get dropped when a Westerner provides a transliteration. What continues to be from Tokyo, then, is to-ki-yo, which is just how it"s pronounced in slrfc.org. The "tokiyo" spelling, then, seems to recurrent fairly an obdurate insistence that the pronunciation be entirely Anglicized for slrfc.org consumption.

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More elucidation: I believe the means to think about Japanese "syllables" is to liken them to music on a phonograph that may be increased or slowed dvery own. The speed of the passing notes might readjust, however their partnership to each other at any type of provided speed remains the same. You may hear a Japanese speaker rush via part of a sentence but the syllables will all be there loved one to each various other at any given speed.