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Lesson Transcript

Jessi: Time, Hours and Minutes. Hi everyone, welcome to appendix lesson 2.
Naomi: In this appendix lesson, you will learn how to tell time in Japanese.
Jessi: Once you know how to say the numbers, telling time becomes rather simple. So we recommend that you review appendix #1 and basic bootcamp #4 and learn the numbers to get the most out of this lesson. First, let’s go over the hours. To tell the hour like 1 o’clock or 2 o’clock, you simply add the word…
Naomi: 時 (ji)
Jessi: … to the number. Let’s go through a couple of examples. 1 o’clock would be
Naomi: 一時 (ichi-ji). The number 一 (ichi) plus 時 (ji).
Jessi: 2 o’clock would be
Naomi: 二時 (ni-ji)
Jessi: 3 o’clock would be
Naomi: 三時 (san-ji)
Jessi: And so on. But be careful though because there are a couple of exceptions. For example, the word for 4 is 四 (yon), but 4 o’clock is not yon-ji. Instead, it’s…
Naomi: 四時 (yo-ji)
Jessi: The yon becomes yo here.
Naomi: Right.
Jessi: The other exception is 9 o’clock. The word for 9 is 九 (kyū), but 9 o’clock is not kyū-ji. Instead, it’s…
Naomi: 九時 (ku-ji)
Jessi: Right. So kyū becomes ku. So don’t forget those two exceptions 四時 (yo-ji) and 九時 (ku-ji). The rest follow the same pattern. Now, let’s take a look at minutes. This is where things can get a bit tricky. Naomi sensei, what’s the word for minute?
Jessi: Minute is 分 (fun). However when you add 分 (fun) to a number, the sound often changes.
Jessi: That’s right. So depending on the number, the sound can change. The changes are pretty random. So let’s go through the words for minutes 1 through 10. I will give the English first and Naomi sensei will give us the Japanese. The first word is 1 minute
Naomi: 一分 (ippun)
Jessi: Two minutes
Naomi: 二分 (ni-fun)
Jessi: Three minutes
Naomi: 三分 (sanpun)
Jessi: Four minutes
Naomi: 四分 (yonpun) or 四分 (yon-fun)
Jessi: Five minutes
Naomi: 五分 (go-fun)
Jessi: Six minutes
Naomi: 六分 (roppun)
Jessi: Seven minutes
Naomi: 七分 (nana-fun)
Jessi: Eight minutes
Naomi: 八分 (happun) or 八分 (hachi-fun)
Jessi: Nine minutes
Naomi: 九分 (kyū-fun)
Jessi: 10 minutes
Naomi: 十分 (juppun) or 十分 (jippun)
Jessi: So as you can see, this 分 (fun) often becomes pun, sometimes with an extra pause in the middle. So make sure that you look over the chart and make note of the sound changes that take place. Okay, let’s look at a few other things. We learned in the previous appendix lesson that the word for 30 is 三十 (san-jū), but how would you say something like 130 or half past 1.
Naomi: You can say 一時三十分 (ichi-ji san-juppun), but you can also say 一時半 (ichi-ji han). 一時 (ichi-ji) means 1 o’clock; 半 (han) means half. So 一時半 (ichi-ji han) is half past one.
Jessi: Now, what do we use when we want to distinguish between AM and PM?
Naomi: For AM we say 午前 (gozen), as in 午前二時 (gozen ni-ji)
Jessi: 2 o’clock in the morning or 2 AM.
Naomi: As for PM, we say 午後 (gogo), as in 午後二時 (gogo ni-ji)
Jessi: 2 o’clock in the afternoon or 2 PM. Now, please note that 午前 (gozen) AM and 午後 (gogo) PM are added before the time in Japanese. So 2 PM is not 二時午後 (ni-ji gogo) but 午後二時 (gogo ni-ji). Pay attention to the word order. Let’s go over the examples that are in the appendix lesson notes. The first one is 2 o’clock
Naomi: 二時 (ni-ji)
Jessi: 2:15
Naomi: 二時十五分 (ni-ji jū-go-fun)
Jessi: 2:30 or half past 2.
Naomi: 二時三十分 (ni-ji san-juppun) or 二時半 (ni-ji han)
Jessi: 2:45
Naomi: 二時四十五分 (ni-ji yon-jū go-fun)
Jessi: All right. So how was that? You are now able to tell time in Japanese.
Naomi: That’s right. See what time it is right now and try saying it in Japanese.
Jessi: If you need more help with the numbers, remember to check out appendix lesson 1 as well as basic bootcamp lesson 4. See you in the next lesson.
Naomi: じゃ、また。(Ja, mata.)


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JapanesePod101.com Verified
October 12th, 2018 at 06:30 PM
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Let us know if you have any questions.

JapanesePod101.com Verified
August 26th, 2020 at 04:25 PM
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Thank you so much for your comment😄

Yes, correct and nope, there are no irregular ones. You just need to follow the pronunciation until 12; for example, 十四時 is じゅうよじ because 四時 is よじ.

Please let us know if you have any questions :)



Team JapanesePod101.com

August 19th, 2020 at 06:36 AM
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To express hours for train time tables and schedules that use a 24 hour clock, is it simply a continuation starting with 十三時 (jūsan-ji)? If so, are there any irregular pronunciations of those numbers up to twenty four?

Thanks for all the great lessons and resources on JapanesPod101.com!

JapanesePod101.com Verified
March 21st, 2019 at 11:02 PM
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Konnichiwa 仁香

Thank you for asking here.

We say "quarter past" as 「15分」. Then "quarter to" as 「15分前」. For example....

2:15 as 「2時(じ)15分(ふん)」、2:45 as 「3時(じ)15分前(ふんまえ)」

Hope it clear to you.😉


Team JapanesePod101.com

February 4th, 2019 at 11:40 AM
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You said that "半" means "half past." Is there a word for "quarter past" like "2:15" or "a quarter past 2?"