Several days ago, one of my friends told me that she got a present with one teapot and three cups from a Japanese. Why are three cups, she feels so surprised. As in China, one tea set usually contain four or six cups besides a pot……This make me think about something heard from my unversity teacher that actually Japanese value about number was very different to us..

In Japan,” three” is the most lucky number, so a lot of time people usually give something to others for present by three. In their eyes, Even were generally excluded from the lucky numbers, why ?As it can be divided, so if u give Japanese a pair of something , that is to say” wish” one of u leave early and it’s certain to make them unhappy if they do not know our culture…

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In Japanese eyes,numbers from one to nine can be divided into six grades.
The lowest ranked number is” four”. Except most of even which were born unlucky in Japanes eyes, “four “‘s pronunciation in Japanese is just like “西” and” 死” which has double meanings of unluky , can be said as the worst one in Japanese . Numbers little better than “four” are “two” and “ six”.

When you see a bunch of ” 6″ at the end of the car’s license plate on the road of Japan, never think they are lucky numbers won in big auction , it is likely to be a result just like the sheep that Chinese lead away by the way.

Though Japanese prefer odd , one of which was not be seen so auspicious, that is “nine”, whose positon is only slightly higher than the even . This is because nine is pronounced “苦” & “窟” with the meaning of “cave” and” bitter”. ,As Japanese usually work overtime and get education of suffering in childhood, they are largely afraid of this number..Japanese don’t have any feeling about “one”, it is too lonely to be liked by Japanese.But as an odd, it’s not be hated so much.

Read Also: Some differences in translation of English-Japanese

The remaining auspicious ones are “five”, “seven” and “eight”, though these figures share the same class, but are not identical. The five yen coin is widely used in sacrifice because its pronounciation is the same to the honorific” 御”.To say about “seven”, it is a pity that it has a problem — it is pronounced ” shiti” ,similar to “死“,so its positon is relatively low and even some Japanese pronounce it as “nana” to avoid it…..

“Eight” were accidently be classified as auspicious number . Even though is a even,as it is only smaller than the maximum number “nine”, is be seen as a symbol of happiness and still have development outlook.What’s more,a meaning of “发” came from Chinese curltre is also be accepted by Japanese.

Also, read how we help localize the project related to Japanese language for our client. Read the case study here