Regional dialect in Sosa City

A dialect in the east coast of Tokyo, Japan

Japanese Page

   Sosa city is located in the east coast of Tokyo. It's about 100km from Tokyo and  the city is in Chiba Prefecture. Though there are some dialects around this city, I will focus on the dialect in ex-Nosaka** town in this page.

  I was born and raised up in Nosaka town. Nine years* have past since I left Nosaka when I was sixteen. I made up my mind to make a page about my sweet hometown dialect, because my ability of Nosaka dialect gets worse and worse year by year.

* I wrote this article in 1997.
**Nosaka town was incorporated into Sosa city in 2006.



Nosaka dialect is  a kind of dialect in  Kanto district* and also has typical Kanto words & phrases.

  • "sa" is used when referring direction instead of ni .

  • Many words have sonant.

  • "be" or "pe" is used to express one's intention, presumption and reminding. "be" or "pe" is originated from ancient word "beshi"

  • Confusion of sounds, sometimes, "hi" and "shi".

* Kanto district is called Metropolitan or Greater Tokyo Area.

  • Name-e Ba Yobare-dara Ma-e Sa Dede Kudasai. (When your name was called, go ahead, please.)
    ("Name-e" means name)
  • Kin-nou, Yougajiba Sa Itta Pe!. (You went to Youkaichiba yesterday, didn't you?)

  Ancient words are often found in our town. This is because words spread from Kyoto, which was a political and economical center in ancient Japan, about 1km per year all over Japan. It's about 500km from Kyoto to our town. So we are using words which Kyoto people used more than 500 years ago. After Sekigahara war in 1600 A.D., Edo (Tokyo) took over role of  Kyoto, words begun to spread from Edo (Tokyo). We also use 100 years ago Tokyo words. In fact, Nosaka town words are often found in Edo literature. I believe we use not only Kyoto and Edo words but other origin words, for example Ainu origin. About 3000 B.P., a foreign group conquered Japan, this is a beginning of Yayoi period*1.  Jomon*2 people ran away from Yayoi people and headed north. These people are called Ainu, today. It was proved by mitochondria dna that Jomon people and Ainu people are of kin. 

  Sometimes new word comes in, but we already have a same meaning word. What will happen?  There is a nice example in our town. We had been using a word hagaji meant centipede. One day a traveler brought a new word mukade meant centipede. Two words found their own role. Today, hagaji means larger centipede and mukade means smaller one.

* Yayoi period: 1000 B.C. to 300 A.D. iron age 
Bronze age is behind iron age in Japan.
*2 Jomon period: 14000 B.C. to 1000 B.C.


Useful words & phrases

Nosaka-ben English
shio ba totte kuro Can you get me some salt?
dogode kattada? Where did you buy this?
okka-a gara tegami ga kita-a I've got a letter from my mother.
yadu gara kiida dayo I got it from him.
wagatta-a I got it!
wa-aka matte-kuro Give me a while.
ikko kini shine-e I don't give a damn.
nigu ni shite kuro I'll have a beef.
ora shin-ne-e I have no idea.
cho-o sareda I have been had!





ade? why?  
an-na fuuzuni like that way (attitude,method)  
o agan nasai mashi Hello, Hi, How are you? around noon.
oshimai nasai mashi Hello, Hi, How are you? in the afternoon.
ajoe su tta? Oh! My! What are you going to do this? Best reply is: Ajoe nimo ka joe nimo shou mei ya.
kapparu(Vi.) turn sideways Kin-no Nishirai-no Tanbo deyo, Kuruma ga Kappa te da do.
"da" means past tense and "do" emphasizes the whole sentence.
kin no yesterday  
nishi you ore, ora = I,  me
person + rai person's house, family nishi rai = your house, family   Reiko-rai = Reiko's house, family
orai = my home, family
kappe ru(Vt.) cover Biniiru Ba Kappe da ga?
Did you wrapped in plastic?
not good, bad (About goods and looks) I-ishite On-na : not so cute girl(woman) .
wa-aka a little, a few  
dasu give Kore Dasu yo. : Here you are. (I will give it to you.)
bucchagu brake, destroy Bucchagi Yagatta Na! :Damn you broke this!
tsu-ppo-sasu pierce, put into Tsu-ppo-sasu De Ne-e-yo!
fun-ja-bagu step on something strongly and brake it blank
kettaguru kick blank
kakkurasu hit, strike Kakkurasite Yare : Give it to him.
bin-cho not bilateral symmetry Nishi No Adama Bin-cho Dana-a : Shape of your head is not symmetry.
jamiru (Vi.) blot, blur when doing shuuji or kakizome
gabu-ku-u shoe got wet  
kowai tired from ..., don't feel well when you dont wanna got to school, say "andaga kowai dayo".
shoppigu pick, arrest by police nishi rai no to-ochan shoppigareda dattuke na.
I heard that your father was arrested.
udade-e be unwilling to do something when you dont wanna do something, say udade-e
suna-hadagi a party in appreciation of one's effort suna-hadagi de oo yoppa...
goguro-u moushi a party in appreciation of one's effort, pe express one's intention, guess and reminding  
hagaji laeger centipede kyou yo-o gakkoni midakodo mo ne-e youna igai hagajiga ideyo-o...
yubui smoky oo yubui furo demo taidettanme-e's smoky. Heating bath with wood?
un-nara-gasu do something with effort in a hurry un-nara-gashite kitaa noni inee gan-na
He wan't here though I came here in a hurry...
bokka piece(s) of wood sogono bokka ba totte kuro
Take a piece of wood for me.
a-onajimi bruise anda sono tsurano aonajimiwa?
What made a bruise on your face?
wage-eshi young man, men kogo niwa wage-eshi ga ine-e gara yo
There is no youngmen here.
igai big, large, huge anda igai kuruma ga kun-na-a.
A huge car is coming.
in-ne-e No thanks.  
una-u till (soil)  
tosho great grand pa, ma  
okkagu snap  
oppesu push OPPESHI is an occupation that oppesu something for money.
kaseru feed darega meshi ba kasedetto omotte tta-a, nisha-a?
Who do you think feed you?
kigane-e be not enough, be insufficient  
noun + gushi with n., whole n.  
shitakke and then...  
suru shave  
bidageru behave like a spoilt child  
ojikuso coward(s)  
tagamaru be surprised at something  
deresuke someone who is slow in movement  
nukkui warm, mild  
nebosuke late-sleeper  
nomeru to fill (a ditch or hole)  
oji-i younger brother younger sister = oba-a, older sister = ane-e
means uncle in standard Japanese. In some area around pacific ocean, people sometimes talk from a point of oldest son's view when they talk to kids. "oji-i" is originated from "oji" and is a word  at a stand point of oldest son's oldest son. Whether he is already born or not, is not matter.
ojippou one's youngest son or brother  
hiyasu dip (dished )in water  
ma-ttsugu (go) straight  
ya-ttsukeru eat up  
igesukane-e(adj.) do(es) not like ....  
jou-bou driveway  
kamo-chin a snakehead mullet, a China fish  
guja-mankai chaos nishi no heya ha guja-mankai dana.
Your room is like a chaos.
dam-magasu cheat, deceive, make a fool of...  
fun-gu-jigu to step on (someone) strongly  
kine-e does not come  
yowaru ( food) go bad This word is used in  Nippon Eitaigura by Ihara Saikaku, but no people uses it in Tokyo now.
nasu breed, lay eggs, deliver There are examples in Taketori Monogatari, The Tale of Princess Kaguya, and Genji Monogatari for the word, but few people use it in hyojungo, Standard Japanese. "Nasanu naka" is a good example and is also a famous phrase in Genji Monogatari, The Tale of Genji. Some people think that the phrase expresses "not appropriate relationship", but true meaning is "not parent-child relationship".