A new dictionary of Kesen language, a Northeast Japanese language

Mitsuru Sakitani sacmit at IVY.OR.JP
Mon Jan 22 17:29:40 UTC 2001

A new dictionary of Kesen language, a Northeast Japanese language.

Title: Kesen~go Daïzitén [Kesenese Grand Lexicon]. Two volumes.
Author: Harutí~gu Yamáura [Harutsugu Yamaura]
ISBN 4-89544-241-1
    Mumyosha Shuppan
    112-1 Hiroomote Aza Kawasaki, Akita 010-0041, Japan
    Phone 81-18-832-5680 Fax 81-18-832-5137
    http://www.mumyosha.co.jp, info at mumyosha.co.jp
Date of Publication: July 30, 2000
Price: Japanese Yen 38,000

PART I GRAMMAR  pp. 11-208
1.1 Letters and Pronunciations  p.13
1.2 Word and Affix (General Introduction)  p.31
1.3 Tone  p.41
1.4 Word  p.56
1.5 Affix  p.122
1.6 Expressions  p.170
1.7 Intonation  p.200
PART II LEXICON  pp. 209-2586
A  p. 210; B  p. 302; D  p. 382; E  p. 465; G  p.483; ~G  p. 547; H  p. 551;
I  p. 786; K  p. 870; M  p. 1251; N  p. 1452; O  p. 1611; P  p. 1720; R  p.
1729; S  p. 1774; T  p. 2087; U  p. 2337; W  p. 2384; Y  p. 2408; Z  p.
2505; Symbols  p. 2583
APPENDIX  pp. 2587-2606
3.1 List of Toponyms in Kesen  p. 2588
3.2 List of Family Names Commonly Found in Kesen  p. 2594
3.3 List of 1511 Kesenese Compound Verbs  p.2602
Japanese-Kesenese Index  pp. 2607-2814

Dear colleagues,

a long-awaited, new dictionary of the Kesen language (= Kesenese), Kesen~go
Daïzitén (Kesenese Grand Lexicon), finally appeared in the last year of the
20th century.
This Grand Lexicon has been prepared by Dr. Yamaura for over 7 years.
Dr. Yamaura has already published other highly significant works on the
Kesenese language and culture (Yamaura 1988, 1989, 1991; Sakitani & Yamaura
This is the first archievement of massive collection of vocabulary of a
Tohoku language (= Northeast Japanese) with an introduction of the
systematic description of its phonetics, phonology and grammar.

This monumental work is characterized by following excellent features.
First, it is written by an author who is a Kesenese native speaker, and all
the lexical entries have been directly scrutinized by the same author in his
own long-term linguistic and cultural experience.
Second, one can find a plenty of examples of concrete usage for all the
Kesenese lexical entries, all of which are translated into Common Japanese
(= Tokyo Japanese).
Third, Kesenese in this dictionary is described in a Latin script system
that has been elaborated by the author for over a quarter of a century, and
this script system can quite accurately reproduce the Kesenese phonetic and
phonological systems.
Fourth, all the entries are tonologically clarified by the Kesenese tone
symbols that are invented by the same author.

In conclusion, this is a first rate work on Northeast Japanese language.
Anyone who wants to describe scientifically valid, real linguistic phenomena
of PLURAL Japanese languages must consult Dr. Yamaura's Kesenese Grand

Unfortunately, there is a drawback.
This is written in Common Japanese. Its eccentric script system prevents
most readers from studying Kesenese language, even though Kesenese is a
quite important language in East Asia.
However, the same author has briefly summarized the Kesenese linguistic
system in a commonly used language and has already published it - Sakitani &
Yamaura (1999: 107-112).
Thus the Kesenese language that is the most standardized language in
Northeast Japanese is also accessible to readers who cannot even understand
Tokyo Japanese. 
This article, Sakitani & Yamaura (1999), is available in the Adobe Acrobat
file format (included in the 850 kb PDF file of Vox Propria 2).
If you are intersted in it, please don't hesitate to contact us at the
Institute for Cross-Cultural Communication <iccc at ivy.or.jp>.

Best regards,

Dr. Mitsuru Sakitani <sacmit at ivy.or.jp>
Director of the Institute for Cross-Cultural Communication <iccc at ivy.or.jp>

€ Yamaura, Harutsugu (1988). Kesen-no uda [Kesenese songs]. Oofunato: Kyowa
Insatsu Kikaku Center.
€ Yamaura, Harutsugu (1989). Kesen-go nyuumon [Introduction to Kesenese
language]. 2nd edition. Oofunato: Kyowa Insatsu Kikaku Center.
€ Yamaura, Harutsugu (1991). Hitakami oogon-densetsu. Oofunato: Kyowa
Insatsu Kikaku Center.
€ Sakitani, Mitsusu & Harutsugu Yamaura (2000). Essai de la traduction du
texte religieux en langues japonaises régionales. Vox Propria 2: 105-134.

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