Additional Characters

By now we’ve gone through all of the Hiragana and Katakana characters. You know the pronunciation and how they look. The final piece before you will be able to read all Hiragana and Katakana characters (pretty cool right?) is to learn the Y-vowel sounds.

What are Y-vowel sounds?

Y-vowels are also known as yoon. It is when you combine a character together with one of the three: ya, yu, yo which is the reason behind the “Y-vowel”/yoon name. Kana you can see this Y-vowel sounds from are Kanas that end with i.  The Y-vowel (ya, yu or yo) is written with half size to indicate that they are a yoon. As you can see in the tables below, it is also possible to do with characters that has dakuten (the symbol) or handakuten (the symbol) as you also can observe in the table down below.

Hiragana Y-vowel sounds

The key Hiragana characters are: や (ya), ゆ (yu), よ (yo).

Hiragana
 ya  yu  yo
 ki きゃ kya きゅ kyu きょ kyo
 shi しゃ sha しゅ shu しょ sho
 chi ちゃ cha ちゅ chu ちょ cho
 ni にゃ nya にゅ nyu にょ nyo
 hi ひゃ hya ひゅ hyu ひょ hyo
 mi みゃ mya みゅ myu みょ myo
 ri りゃ rya りゅ ryu りょ ryo
dakuten
 gi ぎゃ gya ぎゅ gyu ぎょ gyo
 ji じゃ ja じゅ ju じょ jo
 bi びゃ bya びゅ byu びょ byo
handakuten
 pi ぴゃ pya ぴゅ pyu ぴょ pyo

Katakana Y-vowels sounds

The key Katakana characters are: ヤ (ya), ユ (yu), ヨ (yo).

Katakana
 ya  yu  yo
 ki キャ kya キュ kyu キョ kyo
 shi シャ sha シュ shu ショ sho
 chi チャ cha チュ chu チョ cho
 ni ニャ nya ニュ nyu ニョ nyo
 hi ヒャ hya ヒュ hyu ヒョ hyo
 mi ミャ mya ミュ myu ミョ myo
 ri リャ rya リュ ryu リョ ryo
dakuten
 gi ギャ gya ギュ gyu ギョ gyo
 ji ジャ ja ジュ ju ジョ jo
 bi ビャ bya ビュ byu ビョ byo
handakuten
 pi ピャ pya ピュ pyu ピョ pyo