Today’s lesson is going to be about how to say each months in Japanese with modern and traditional readings. Now this topic doesn’t seem so complex, but what many people don’t know is that there is actually a name for each month, just like in English (January, February and so forth). Instead of just saying number and month, for example: 一月, the first month, meaning January, there is the traditional way.
Standard way of saying months in Japanese
The ordinary, modern way of saying each month of the year can be see down below.
If you didn’t know already, you can both write the numbers with kanji or without, it’s all up to your own choice. Like this. This means that this would have the same reading as the one with kanji.
Months in Japanese with kanji traditionally
Now the traditional way, can be seen in this next table. These were used back in the Heian period.
|January||睦月||むつき||Mutsuki||Month of harmony|
|February||如月||きさらぎ||kisaragi||Month of wearing extra layers of clothes|
|March||弥生||やよい||yayoi||Month of growth|
|April||卯月||うずき||uzuki||Month of Deutzia (unohana)|
|May||皐月||さつき||satsuki||Month of planting rice sprouts|
|June||水無月||みなづき||mina zuki||Month of no water|
|July||文月||ふづき||fuzuki||Month of literary|
|August||葉月||はづき||wa zuki||Month of leaves|
|September||長月||ながつき||na ga tsuki||Autumn long month|
|October||神無月||かんなづき||kanna zuki||Month of no Gods|
|November||霜月||しもつき||shimo tsuki||Month of frost|
|December||師走||しわす||shiwasu||Month of running priests|
Source of month’s meanings.