|Castle in the Sky Sailor Moon|
|Character Names & What they Mean|
tsuki means "moon" and usagi means rabbit. These words are a reference to the Japanese custom of seeing the shape of a rabbit in the face of the full moon. In fact if you write out Serena's Japanese name tsuki no usagi using a different Japanese symbol for the no sound, it would mean "rabbit of the moon". According to this legend, the rabbit lives on the moon and makes mochi (a sticky treat made by pounding sweet rice). In the modern Japanese calender tsuki is also the symbol for Monday.
mizu or sui means "water". sei means star or heavenly body. suisei is the Japanese name for the planet Mercury. This symbol also means Tuesday.
hi or ka means "fire". kasei means the planet Mars. This symbol also means Wednesday.
ki or moku means "tree". mokusei means the planet Jupiter. This symbol also means Thursday.
ai means "love". mi or bi means "beautiful". The name for the planet Venus in Japanese is kinsei (kin means "gold" and is also the symbol for Friday). However, because Japanese symbols (kanji) can have more than one pronunciation, mi-na-ko can also be read as bi-na-su. binasu is how Japanese would pronounce the word "Venus".
Sera (Sailor) is written phonetically. These Japanese symbols are called katakana and they have no meaning except for their sound. The Sailor Identities always use English planet names.
chibi means "little" or "mini". Rini/Chibi-Usa has the same name as Serena/Usagi so she is called by a nickname instead. "Rini" is short for the name "Serena". Chibi-Usa is a short-form/nickname for the name Usagi.
meiou means "underworld king" Pluto was god of the underworld in ancient Roman mythology. The large symbols used to write the word meiou are called kanji. The small symbols above the the kanji are called furigana (this is a special use of the hiragana alphabet). Furigana specify the correct pronounciation for the kanji. Furigana is mostly used in children's books; adults are expected to know the kanji from memory. However furigana is also used to specify the reading when kanji is used in an unusual or uncommon way.
tenou means "sky king" Uranus was the god of the skies in ancient Roman mythology.
kaiou means "ocean king" Neptune was the god of the oceans in ancient Roman mythology.
tomoe is the Japanese word for "Saturn", hotaru means "firefly"
There are multiple ways to represent Japanese using the English alphabet, the names of the outer planet soldiers can also be spelled Meioh, Tenoh and Kaioh.
Chi means "earth" or "ground". Chikyuu means "planet Earth". Mamoru means "protect". Kamen means "mask" and tsukikage means "moonlight". The name Endymion comes from an ancient legend recorded by the Greeks and Romans. Endymion was a mortal man who was beloved by the goddess of the moon. Some legends say that Endymion gained immortal sleep and lives eternally in the land of dreams.
Birthdays & Blood Types
The girl's names, birthdays, zodiac signs, personalities, and special powers are all related to the planet that they are the soldier of. In ancient Roman mythology, Mercury was associated with science and commerce, Mars with war, Jupiter with thunder and lightning, and Venus with love. In ancient Japanese tradition there were considered to be five elements: air, water, fire, wood, and metal. The colors (white, blue, red, brown/green, and gold) and to some degree the superpowers of the girls correspond to these five elements.
How people are addressed in Japanese
Here is some vocabulary that you are likely to come across when reading about Japanese stories.
In Japanese and Chinese, the family name is written first and the given name is written second. Japanese people don't usually have middle names. Japanese names are almost always used with a title. The title is a suffix like -san or -chan. -san basically means Mr./Mrs./Miss/Ms. Surnames (family names) are always used except when talking to personal friends or family.
Note: Not using any suffix indicates a close relationship which could include family, childhood friends, or adult lovers. Sensei and Senpai can be used by themselves or as a suffix added to someone's name.
Sources Consulted: Sailor Moon Manga Volume 1 (Japanese Edition), a usenet posting by Fumitsuna Maruyama, Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon Materials Collection 1999, birthdays, bloodtypes and romanizations from Sailor Moon Manga Volume 11 (Hong Kong Edition), Japanese days of the week from Nina Matsumoto, Minako translation from "Beej" Derry, Greek & Latin from Langenscheidt Universal Latin Dictionary & The Concise English Dictionary, Roman myths and legends from Bulfinch's Mythology, blood types in Japanese culture from Lucia Ishii, some translations from VKLL, Catherine for Zodiac signs. Other contributors: J. Wilkinson, Liz M., Maria B., Ashie-Ash. This document written by Lawrence Puente. Feel free to print or save for personal use but please do not copy onto other web sites.
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