After this period, every person had to legally register their family name—some names were favorable family names and others were either made up or taken from ancient Japanese last names. Until 1898, husbands and wives had to keep their separate family names. Meaning: “chrysanthemum book”, Yamaguchi 山口 佐 (Sa) means ‘to assist’, and 藤 (Tō) suggests the historic 藤原 (Fujiwara) clan from the Heian Period (794 – 1185). Has anyone in your family been diagnosed with HS or experienced HS symptoms? Meaning: sai 斉 can be used to refer to a meal taken by monks and priests or an image of purity and divine worship. Sato is the most popular last name because of the possibility that it descended from the great clan. Meaning: ‘Stone mount/stone hill”, Kikumoto 菊本 You may unsubscribe at any time. 1 Top 100; 2 A; 3 B; 4 C; 5 D; 6 E; 7 F; 8 G; 9 H; 10 I; 11 J; 12 K; 13 M; 14 N; 15 O; 16 R; 17 S; 18 T; 19 U; 20 W; 21 Y; 22 Z; Top 100 . You may be thinking of the Japanese car brand right now, but Suzuki is also a popular surname in Japan! In ascending order, the most common Japanese surnames today: 10. Do these symptoms appear near your inner thighs, armpits, chest, groin, or buttocks? Meaning: “rice field” (田) and “middle/in” (中). Her work has helped Time win two National Magazine Awards. Japanese last names are used in Japan and in Japanese communities all over the world. These are some unique Japanese Last Names. There are an estimated 300,000 Japanese last names. A Chinese custom was introduced to countries in East Asia, including Japan, that developed the different names people could have. 渡辺 / 渡邊 (Watanabe) is the fifth most popular surname in Japan, with a population of 1,150,000 people using it! is a Japanese word that means “family name” and is pronounced “Myouji.” In the past, it was pronounced “Naazana”, which was a type of formal nickname. 渡辺 / 渡邊 (Watanabe) is the fifth most popular surname in Japan, with a population of 1,150,000 people using it! Back then, owning a rice paddy field was a symbol of wealth. Meaning: “Increase and wisteria”, Aikawa 相河 What’s the point of a nickname? Katakana lettering is also ore straight, while Hiragana is more curved. This surname is originally a place name and refers to a location in the Osaka Prefecture of Japan which was settled by descendants of Emperor Saga (786 – 842). Learn more about working with Thought Catalog. Interested in taking Japanese classes? There are a hundreds of different Japanese names for both boys and girls, as well as hundreds of different surnames. Top 5 Most Popular Japanese Surnames . A person with this Japanese name might be from the middle village. This was a way to distinguish people by class and if they were commoners or nobles. Kobayashi 小林. As it became inconvenient to address so many people with the same surname, people started making their own surnames by combining 藤原 (Fujiwara) with other words, such as the name of their region or their job. The first bearer of the Watanabe name was Minamoto no Toru, a son of Emperor Saga! In ancient Japan, clans were organized by the Kabane system, which determined each clan’s political and social standing. Fast forward to 1870 when a law was created, allowing every Japanese person — no matter if they were a commoner or a noble—to have family names. Meaning: “A” means “peace” while “be“ means multiple times. It was in the year 1896 that Japan returned to the old civil law that obligated spouses to share the same family name. This law didn’t go into effect until 1875. Now you can use Latin characters (romanzi), hentayganu, manyogana (syllabic alphabets), as well as special characters and symbols. This surname originated from the land called Ise Shima Peninsula in the Mie Prefecture of Japan. Then, over time, during the Kofun period, clan leaders and their families started emerging and small kingdoms were established. Meaning: “Bulky man” or “warrior, Kato/Katō 加藤 Have your physical symptoms, such as sores, wounds, or pain, impacted your lifestyle or mental outlook? Abe 阿部, 安倍, 安部, or 阿倍 Need help finding a dermatologist? These clans grew into small kingdoms, which were then united under one ruler who gave each clan a designation according to their societal status. The 30 most common Japanese surnames (2010) On 13 February 1875 (明治8年) it was officially decreed that all Japanese must adopt surnames. During the Yayoi Period (300 BC-300 AD), Japan had developed a system of clans: people who were related to each other by blood, marriage, or common ancestor would use clan names as family names. This would often be used for generic names, as we would with Jane Doe or John Smith. If you look back on the history of Japanese names, you’ll notice that it has changed drastically over centuries. Learn about us. Meaning: “Bush clover” and “book/present”, Doi土井, 土居, 土肥 Meaning: “Rice paddy” or “village rice paddy”, Hagimoto 萩本 tō 藤 can be read as “fuji”, and means wisteria. Contents. It’s also one part of the phonetic lettering system. As a way to show others their prosperity, a Japanese family with a house in the middle of their rice paddy field started calling themselves 田中 (Tanaka), and that is how it transitioned into people using this surname! Meaning: Alongside the ever-popular “tō” 藤, we find (sa 佐), meaning “to assist”. It was hard to distinguish the status of each clan, so to make things easier, the Uji-Kabane was created: an aristocratic title attached to an Uji name. In 2019, it was stated that maiden names were informal and a woman must take the same surname of her husband. Fun fact! A Chinese custom was introduced to countries in East Asia, including Japan, that developed the different names people could have. After completing this quiz, please talk to your dermatologist about your answers as soon as possible. So how did Japanese names get to where they are today? Japanese names consist of a surname and a name following it, and, as a rule, are written in hieroglyphs. Meaning: “Earth town,” “earth residence,” or “earth fertilizer”, Honda 本田, 本多 or 誉田 Meaning: “mountain” (yama 山) and “base/origin” (moto 本), Meaning: “this’ or ‘that one’ (伊) and wisteria (藤), Meaning: To cross or pass over (渡) and “area” or “border” (辺). It was difficult to change legally registered names, and that then created confusion around marital status with a wife taking her husband’s surname. Meaning: “Between the valley” or “in the center of the valley”, Takao 高雄 or 高尾 Samurai, a member of a powerful military in Japan, would use nicknames. Saitō ; Persons with name*: 980,000 Written: 斉藤 Meaning: The first kanji, sai 斉, can be used to refer to a meal taken by monks and priests, but in broader terms it conveys an image of purity and divine worship. In the last 6 months, have these bumps reappeared 3 or more times? You may notice that in some surnames, the kanji characters have relations to nature, locations or geographical features, such as mountain (山 yama), tree (木 ki), rice field (田 ta), bridge (橋 hashi), village (村 mura), middle (中 naka) etc. Hiragana is a Japanese syllabary or pronunciation. The founder of Suzuki Motor Corporation is named none other than… Michio Suzuki! Well, it was custom to avoid calling a noble person or a deceased person by their given name, and that customs as introduced to Japan. Meaning: “The mouth of the mountain”. 渡辺 / 渡邊 (Watanabe) means ‘to cross over a river’. U-verb ー Verb Conjugation List with illustrations Part 1, Japanese Computer Vocabulary - Useful words to know. Nakaya 仲谷, 中谷 or 中矢 Take the quiz to see if your symptoms may be HS—a chronic inflammatory skin condition that may be linked to the immune system. Please note: This quiz is not meant to diagnose patients with HS. 田中 (Tanaka) is the fourth most common surname in Japan, with a population of 1,350,000 people using it. Meaning: “inside” or “middle” (naka 中) and “village” (mura 村). 5. In ancient China, people had 3 elements to their name: a family name, a first name, and a nickname. But it's always important to talk to a dermatologist about any medical concerns you may have. Your answers indicate you’ve experienced symptoms commonly associated with HS. Submit your writing to be published on Thought Catalog. tō 藤 can be read as “fuji”, and means wisteria. Furthermore, in 1985 the list of officially allowed characters was expanded for writing names. Meaning: “Tall/high” (高) and “bridge” (橋). During the Meiji era, the government required all citizens by law to register under a surname. It is the second most common Japanese surname with around 1,750,000 people having it. Meaning: “Root rice field,” “origin rice field,” or “honor rice field”, Ishioka 石岡 Your answers indicate that you haven’t experienced any of the common symptoms that are typically associated with HS. This surname originated from people who owned or worked with rice paddy fields during ancient Japan. While nobles would continue using their true first names, Samurai did things differently. Akiyama – Aki means autumn and Yama means hill, Sasaki – sa  means aid and saki means tree, Ueno – ue means above/top/upper and no field/wildness. 高 (Taka) means ‘tall, high’ and 橋 (Hashi) means ‘bridge’. Have you experienced tender, swollen bumps, either on or under your skin, that may produce foul-smelling liquid and scarring? 名字. Many of these surnames have meanings to them and some even reflect how life was like back then in Japan! In this blog, we will be sharing with you in ascending order, the top 5 most popular surnames in Japan, their meanings and a brief history behind them! Back then, a great number of people used 藤原 (Fujiwara) as their surname. An additional decree from 17 March 1876, mandated that spouses must both keep their original family (maiden) names. Premina Parker, is a parenting advisor. Hence, 田中 (Tanaka) means ‘the center of rice fields’. Japanese names consist of a surname and a name following it, and, as a rule, are written in hieroglyphs. There was a defect in this Uji-Kabane system of names and things got so confusing that the system started to fade. “Eastern capital” — 京 (kyō) means “Capital” and 都 (to) means “City”. Dedicated to your stories and ideas. Sign up for the Thought Catalog Weekly and get the best stories from the week to your inbox every Friday. By subscribing, you agree to the terms of our Privacy Statement. 鈴 (Suzu) means ‘bell’ and 木 (Ki) means ‘tree, wood’. It's important to talk to a dermatologist about any medical concerns you may have. As mentioned before, there are thousands of Japanese names. Here’s a list of some of the most. Furthermore, in 1985 the list of officially allowed characters was expanded for writing names. Click here. 佐藤 (Satō) is the most common Japanese surname with an estimated 2,000,000 people having it! However, parents sometimes use the Japanese syllable alphabet of hiragana and katakana to write down the names of their children. Around 300 B.C., people in Japan began using occupational or geographical names to define their clan (a group of people related by blood, marriage or a common ancestor). There are a hundreds of different Japanese names for both boys and girls, as well as hundreds of different surnames. Name Rank Regions/Prefectures Place of origin Romaji Kanji (or … popular Japanese last names and their meanings, It’s Okay To Be Yourself, No Matter What Society Tells You, 14 Truths About Relationships That No One Ever Talks About, The Truth Is, I Never Should Have Friendzoned You, Here’s An Underrated Horror Movie (And Sequel) That Are Both Streaming On Netflix, 250+ Best Love Quotes For Him to Feel Special and Appreciated, 8 Little Reminders For Anyone Who’s Struggling With Rejection, Here’s Why It’s So Important To Vote Down-Ballot This Election. Today, there is an estimate of 100,00 Japanese family names; however, it wasn’t always like that. Let’s get into it: Centuries ago, Japanese men and women did not have surnames—specifically, the ordinary people of the public. She is the author, most recently, parenting blog called Genbabycarrier.com. You should speak with a dermatologist about your answers to this quiz to get a proper diagnosis.

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