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Re: [Lingo] Pronounciation from kanji: 下手 (へた)

On 08/02/2008, steven smith <> wrote:
> In general for words with compound kanji, the word usually
> takes its pronunciation from the kanji's 音読み, right?

Right for those cases where the reading is from the  音読み.
However there are *many* words where the reading is from the
訓読み, quite a few mixed 音訓 words (e.g. 台所) and a lot of words
where the reading of the word has nothing whatsover with the readings
of the constituent kanji. Think about words like 今日 (きょう), 田舎,
etc. etc. These irregular pronunciations are called things like 熟字訓
and 義訓 depending on their category, but a lot of people call them
"ateji', which they are not.

> What is going on with 下手?

See above.

Jim Breen
Honorary Senior Research Fellow
Clayton School of Information Technology,
Monash University, VIC 3800, Australia

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