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Kanji Match


  • Kanji Match screen shot 0


The system of Japanese numerals is the system of number names used in the Japanese language. The Japanese numerals in writing are entirely based on the Chinese numerals and the grouping of large numbers follow the Chinese tradition of grouping by 10,000. This brain game uses Japanese kanji numbers 1 through 8 to exercise your memory. Did you know that the Japanese use separate systems for counting for oneself and for displaying numbers to others, which both proceed up to 10? For counting, one begins with the palm open, then counts up to 5 by curling up (folding down) the fingers, starting from the thumb – thus one has just the thumb down (and others extended), while 4 has only the pinkie extended, and 5 has a fist. One then counts up to 10 by proceeding in the reverse order, extending the fingers, starting at the pinkie – thus 6 is the same as 4, 7 the same as 3, and so forth, with 10 ending with the palm open. While this introduces ambiguity, it is not used to present to others, so this is generally not a problem. When displaying for others, one starts with the hand closed, and extends fingers, starting with the index, going to the pinkie, then ending with the thumb, as in the United States. For numbers above 5, one uses an open hand (indicating 5) and places the appropriate number of fingers from the other hand against the palm (palms facing each other) – so 6 has the index finger against the palm, and so forth. To display 10, one presents both hands open and palm outwards.

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