| Sino-Japanese vocabulary ： ウィキペディア英語版|
Sino-Japanese vocabulary or refers to that portion of the Japanese vocabulary that originated in Chinese or has been created from elements borrowed from Chinese. Some grammatical structures and sentence patterns can also be identified as Sino-Japanese. Sino-Japanese vocabulary is referred to in Japanese as , meaning 'Chinese words'. ''Kango'' is one of three broad categories into which the Japanese vocabulary is divided. The others are native Japanese vocabulary (''yamato kotoba'') and borrowings from other, mainly Western languages (''gairaigo''). It is estimated that approximately 60% of the words contained in a modern Japanese dictionary are ''kango'',〔Shibatani, Masayoshi. (''The Languages of Japan (Section 7.2 "Loan words", p.142) ), Cambridge University Press, 1990. ISBN 0-521-36918-5〕 and they comprise about 18% of words used in speech.
''Kango'', the use of Chinese-derived words in Japanese, is to be distinguished from ''kanbun'', which is actual Chinese written by Japanese in Japan. Both ''kango'' in modern Japanese and classical ''kanbun'' have Sino-xenic linguistic and phonetic elements also found in Korean and Vietnamese: that is, they are "Sino-foreign," not purely Chinese.
== Background ==
China's large territory and advanced culture led Chinese to exert an enormous influence on Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese and other East Asian languages throughout history, in a manner somewhat similar the preeminent position that Greek and Latin had in European history. For example, the Middle Chinese word for gunpowder, 火藥 ,〔(Baxter-Sagart Old Chinese reconstruction, version 1.0 ), also available at Wiktionary; see also Baxter's transcription for Middle Chinese〕 is rendered as ''hwayak'' in Korean, and as ''kayaku'' in Japanese. At the time of their first contact, the Japanese language had no writing system, while the Chinese had a written language and a great deal of academic information, providing new concepts along with Chinese words to express them. Chinese became the language of science, learning and religion. The earliest written language to be used in Japan was literary Chinese, which has come to be called ''kanbun'' in this context. The ''kanbun'' writing system essentially required every literate Japanese to be competent in written Chinese, although it is unlikely that many Japanese people were then fluent in spoken Chinese. Chinese pronunciation was approximated in words borrowed from Chinese into Japanese; this Sino-Japanese vocabulary is still an important component of the Japanese language, and may be compared to words of Latin or Greek origin in English.
Chinese borrowings also significantly impacted Japanese phonology, leading to many new developments such as closed syllables (CVC, not just CV) and length becoming a phonetic feature with the development of both long vowels and long consonants. (See Early Middle Japanese: Phonological developments for details.)
抄文引用元・出典: フリー百科事典『 ウィキペディア（Wikipedia）』
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