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  • Anime: Glossary of Terms

    A small compilation of definitions that should help you understand the lingo's of the Anime world.

    Baka
    The Japanese word for "idiot" or "fool".

    Bishounen "beautiful young man" / Bishoujo "beautiful girl"
    This term is very rarely used outside of anime. "bishounen" is usually only applied to very feminine, swishy male anime characters.

    Chibi
    "chibi" literally means "midget" and refers to anything small and cute.In anime, "chibi" refers to the super-deformed style of drawing. Characters with huge heads and itty bitty little bodies.

    Cosplay
    Short for "costume play". Dressing up as your favorite characters.

    CG
    Computer Graphics, or refering to anything in anime that is drawn digitally with 3D models.

    Dojinshi
    Literal meaning: same things, different people.
    Fan produced itmes from similar storylines, especially fan drawn manga. Dojinshi is pretty much legal in Japan as it shows the makers of official manga how popular their work is. Fan works range from hand-made photocopies stapled together into booklets to the professionally bound works.

    Ecchi
    "is the Japanese pronunciation of the English letter "H", which in turn stands for "hentai". It means anything perverted, overly sexual, etc. Always in a negative context.

    Fanfic
    A story written by fans that involves characters from an existing anime series. Usually written in installments and published on the internet, the content ranges from continuations of the official story to improbable situations to erotica.

    Fan Service
    Anything used to please the audience that has nothing to do with the show. In anime, this is a "code word" for things like panty shots, close up of busts, etc. usually when the audience is predominately male.

    Fansub
    Fan-subtitled. The only way to find a translation of many less popular titles as well as surprising ones is through fansubbing. Generally, fansubbed items are distributed by copying freely, so poor quality copies are common. It is considered unethical and illegal to fansub a show which is being commercially translated.

    Hentai
    Refers to anything perverted, erotic, or sexual, always in a negative context. Words both as an adjective and a noun. Something can be described as "hentai," and you can also simply call someone a "hentai."

    Hime "Princess"
    This is a name suffix, added to the ends of names. (Ex: Mononokehime = Princess Mononoke). If used alone as a noun, not attached to a name, the term is usually "himesama" or "ohimesama."

    Henshin
    To transform.
    This term generally refers to animes or manga that has characters transforming into their magical alter ego. (Ex. Sailormoon)

    J-pop
    Japanese popular music.

    Japanimation
    A term used to refer to Japanese animation.

    Kawaii "cute"
    Literally, "kawaii" means defenseless/pathetic, but these days refers to anything dripping of cuteness. Also used for "cute" as in "cute girl/boy.". It is common for American anime fans to overuse this word. If you are male, please realize that this makes you sound comically swishy.

    Kodomo
    Literally means child. In the anime world, this term refers to anime or manga that is specifically created with children under the age of 10 in mind. Some popular kodomo anime titles are Doraemon and Anpanman.

    Lemon
    mature content
    This is not a Japanese term. It is a word invented by American anime fans to refer to anime and fan fiction with sexual content.

    Lolita
    A term used for hentai involving children. Lolita comes from the book Lolita in which a forty some year old man falls in love with a fourteen year old girl. Lolita hentai is popular among men in Japan.

    Lime
    Usually refers to fanfic that hints that a couple had sex.

    Manga
    Japanese comics
    As of 1998, over 54% of all bound printed matter published in Japan was manga, with nearly 2.8 billion volumes printed annually. Manga is much more popular than anime in Japan. Almost all anime starts as manga, gains a following, and is then converted to anime. Note that "manga" is printed, "anime" is animated. The two terms cannot be interchanged.

    Mecha
    Big robots in anime.
    This is not a Japanese term. It was invented originally by American anime fans to describe the big robots found in anime. Ironically, the term has caught on in Japan, and now some anime actually uses the term as well.

    Megami-sama
    A goddess. "megami" literally means "female god." "sama" is an honorary suffix usually attached to the end.

    Manga-ka
    A term used for a manga artist. Manga-ka is a difficult and much desired job in Japan unlike comic artists.

    OAV
    Stands for original animation video. Not part of a tv series, but not a movie.

    Otaku "obsessive fan"
    This is a dangerous word. It has been adopted by American anime fans to mean any sort of anime/manga fan. Some even use it with pride. Note that in Japan, "otaku" is a very very harsh insult. It is reserved only for people who never leave their houses (which is what otaku literally means), because they are too frightened of people. No hygeine, no people skills, no motivation, and usually very perverted and disgusting. Use with great care outside of America.

    OST
    Original SoundTrack - Soundtrack albums for the music in anime series.

    OVA
    A long, made for TV version of an anime series, usually 1-2 hours long. Occasionally seen on television, but usually released straight to video or DVD.

    Omake
    This term means "extra" in Japanese. In anime terms it usually refers to the silly stories, author notes, and alternative scenes found at the end of an anime series or manga.

    Ronin
    The Japanese term for a samurai without a master. Basically, they wandered around looking for work as a hired sword, and have a sort of cool, "lone gunslinger" image. Can also be used to describe students taking exams to a university. (ex. Keitaro from Love hina, Godai from Maison Ikkoku)

    Regional Codes
    A general DVD term, Regional Codes can be used to prevent the playback of certain discs depending on the geographical area it is played in. These codes were placed after various studios and home video companies supported these codes as a required part of current DVD standards. In doing so, they hoped to better control how DVD titles were exported to other countries. Regional codes can usually be found on the back of DVD packages inside the Regional Coding globe logo with the region number on it. In some cases, the Regional Code is spelled out.

    The following is the regional breakdown.

    Region 1 (R1) - The United States, United States territories, and Canada
    Region 2 (R2) - Europe, Japan, the Middle East, Egypt, South Africa, and Greenland
    Region 3 (R3) - Taiwan, Korea, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Hong Kong
    Region 4 (R4) - Mexico, South America, Central America, Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands, and the Caribbean
    Region 5 (R5) - Russia, Eastern Europe, India, most of Africa, North Korea, and Mongolia
    Region 6 (R6) - China

    Raw
    n the anime world, "raw" is the common term used for unsubbed anime.

    Seiyuu
    The Japanese voice actors/actresses in anime. This may include singers.

    Shounen-ai
    Boy love.
    This term refers to anime or manga that deals with relationships between two male characters. It is generally thought of as being less explicit than yaoi. Examples may include Gravitation or Yami no Matsuei.

    Yaoi
    Any content that has boy-boy situations. Homosexual content.

    Yuri
    Literal meaning: lily.
    In the anime world, this term is the equivalent of yaoi but for girls. In other words, it refers to anime/manga with girl-girl situations.

    Categorization:

    Josei
    (n.) young woman.
    Demographic indicator for anime and manga aimed at young women. One of the rarest forms of anime, a large proportion of josei anime/manga appears to fall under the category of "yaoi".

    Shoujo
    (n.) daughter; young lady; virgin; maiden; little girl.
    Demographic indicator for anime and manga aimed at girls. However, among Western fans, it is often misinterpreted to mean "an anime with the stylistic qualities usually associated with shoujo".

    Shounen
    (n.) boys; juveniles.
    Demographic indicator for anime and manga aimed at boys. The most obvious and common example of shounen is "fighting" anime, where extremely powerful warriors duke it out amongst each other with various forms of martial arts and superpowers.

    Seinen
    (n.) youth; young man.
    Relatively uncommon in the west due to the emphasis on the male teen market, "seinen" is a demographic indicator for anime and manga aimed at a young adult male (college-aged) audience. They are intended for a more mature audience.

    Spoiler
    Originally posted by starcaptor
    I would say Lisa Hayes would probably have the best historical account since shes been on the ship for quite a while. I remember talking to hongfire one on one in the forums for only one thing, and that was...why was the website called hongfire?

  • #2
    so in what context is "kawaii" appropriate?
    and as for otaku, what would be a more appropriate term that can describe an anime fan that isn't so harsh?
    HF-CLAMP Fanclub Founder

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    • #3
      OVA and OAV are the same thing! Original Video/Animation Animation/Video

      Stick in 'Shota' as a term

      My DaTorrent list | What?

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      • #4
        Originally posted by nick64
        OVA and OAV are the same thing! Original Video/Animation Animation/Video

        Stick in 'Shota' as a term
        Yeah.. i thought so..

        Neko means Cat
        Sugoi (did i spell i it right) means awesome

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        • #5
          thanks for the explanations i was lost in translation ^^U
          "To surrender to ignorance and call it God has always been premature, and it remains premature today."--- Issac Asimov

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          • #6
            inu is dog and busu is dummy I think.

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            • #7
              inu = dog
              neko = cat
              anyone mind answering my question please?:
              so in what context is "kawaii" appropriate?
              and as for otaku, what would be a more appropriate term that can describe an anime fan that isn't so harsh?
              HF-CLAMP Fanclub Founder

              Comment


              • #8
                May be you want to add "tankoubon" & "neko mimi.
                :: Member of [HF-Loli] [HF-Clamp] [HF-Yushy] :: Ei? You can see this line? Are you Shiki?

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                • #9
                  there's also ayashii, rori, hanime. also dub, sub, raw. and if you're going to go into basic common japanese words, well, there are tons...

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                  • #10
                    nice post "Lisa Hayes" thanx ^^

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                    • #11
                      I would like to know what is the difference between anue and aniki

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                      • #12
                        i didn't know that quite a lot of people are not aware of some common anime terms ^^

                        soo ok, i will be editing xkhol's post soon to add a few more terms.
                        so if you want some anime terms added, now is a good time to tell me.

                        i can't change the first post since it's already at it's limit. so i will have to edit the 2nd post.

                        Spoiler
                        Originally posted by starcaptor
                        I would say Lisa Hayes would probably have the best historical account since shes been on the ship for quite a while. I remember talking to hongfire one on one in the forums for only one thing, and that was...why was the website called hongfire?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          immoto applies for both younger sister and brother ??

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I think Aniki is for guys and anue for girls and they both mean/are directed to the one in charge but unlike -sama or -san this is informal such as brother to older sister.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by calador
                              immoto applies for both younger sister and brother ??
                              No.

                              Father:
                              Sonkeigo (Honorific): お父さん - おとうさん - otousan
                              Kenjougo (Humble): 父 - ちち - chichi

                              Mother:
                              Sonkeigo (Honorific): お母さん - おかあさん - okaasan
                              Kenjougo (Humble): 母 - はは - haha

                              Older brother:
                              Sonkeigo (Honorific): お兄さん - おにいさん - oniisan
                              Kenjougo (Humble): 兄 - あに - ani

                              Older sister:
                              Sonkeigo (Honorific): お姉さん - おねえさん - oneesan
                              Kenjougo (Humble): 姉 - あね - ane

                              Younger brother:
                              Sonkeigo (Honorific): 弟さん - おとうとさん - otoutosan
                              Kenjougo (Humble): 弟 - おとうと - otouto

                              Younger sister:
                              Sonkeigo (Honorific): 妹さん - いもうとさん - imoutosan
                              Kenjougo (Humble): 妹 - いもうと - imouto

                              Remember that you should use the humble form when you are talking about one of your relatives but you must use the honorific form when you are talking about another person's relative. I hope this helped you.

                              EDIT: Added father and mother.
                              Last edited by miscman; 05-29-2005, 02:48 PM.

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