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Author Topic: Kongo written in Hiragana  (Read 1767 times)

raflaunches

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Kongo written in Hiragana
« on: March 07, 2023, 09:23:03 am »

An unusual request:


Iím not a Japanese language reader but Iím researching a future project of the battlecruiser Kongo 1914. The name is written on the stern walk hand rail but I canít make out the first two characters clearly and the internet has different characters to what is in this picture. Does anyone what the characters are for Kongo in hiragana are please?
Many thanks.
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Nick B

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jaymac

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2023, 10:32:21 am »

                        Presume you have seen this interesting designed and built in Britain
       
            http://www.modelwarships.com/reviews/ships/ijn/bb/Kongo-700-ka/FlyHawk-Review.html
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raflaunches

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2023, 10:38:45 am »

Hi Jaymac


Yes thatís the ship. Iíve got that kit too but as you can see the characters used on the box donít match the photo. I think I can see what the two closest to the camera are but the two further away arenít clear enough to match.
I hope to make a 1/96 scale model one day but getting accurate info on the Kongo as built isnít as easy as youíd think. Managed to source some PDF plans but itís the little things are harder to identify.
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Nick B

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T888

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2023, 11:54:50 am »

Have you looked at Japanese Battleship Kongo: 5 (Kango Super Drawings in 3D) books
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raflaunches

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2023, 11:59:03 am »

Hi T888


No I hadnít thought of that book. Iíll have a look as Iíve got a majority of the series of the 3D drawing books. Thatís a good call. Many thanks
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Nick B

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Umi_Ryuzuki

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2023, 07:08:27 pm »

On many of the older ships of the Japanese Imperial Navy, the characters are read from right to left.
So while you might expect to read, こんご you might actually find うごんこ, with a U sound added to the left end.
 :-)

It is very evident on the destroyers, where they splash the large white characters on the sides of the ship. It is read right to left. 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_destroyer_Shimakaze_%281920%29#/media/File:IJN_Shimakaze_(Minekaze_class)_Taisho_11.jpg

tigertiger

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2023, 06:34:19 am »

Just thinking at a tangent. Is it possible that the Japanese Navy had not adopted Hiragana at the time of this photo, and was still using Hentaigana?
I cannot see the script in the photo, and so I cannot compare.


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tonyH

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2023, 01:28:23 pm »

Early glass plate pic. I've assumed the text at the bottom is the Japanese for HIJMS Kongo and not just the photographer so may indicate something........or nothing O0
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raflaunches

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2023, 02:16:04 pm »

Hi Tiger


Iím not sure, Iím only going from the recently published book about the Kongo said it was written in but they also said that it was a clearly seen item on the stern walk! From what I do know that there are two different styles of katana in high and low types. I had hoped that the picture they provide in the book was clearer so I could see the characters better.
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Nick B

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raflaunches

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2023, 02:18:28 pm »

Hi Tony


Once again I donít know enough either to say otherwise. Thanks for the picture of the early Kongo. Iíd like to build Kongo as originally I was thinking of doing HMS Tiger but Iíve seen a model of that ship recently so I wanted to do something else but similar. So Kongo is the closest vessel to Tiger (they say they really are close sisters for two navies).
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Nick B

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tonyH

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2023, 03:26:48 pm »

Hi Nick,
It'll be fun deciding on which date and which iteration :-))
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dougal99

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #11 on: March 08, 2023, 05:32:16 pm »

I know less than nothing about japanese but google translate gives:

金剛Any help
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JimG

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #12 on: March 08, 2023, 08:36:15 pm »

Have you tried to PM Backerther as he is from Japan?
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #13 on: March 08, 2023, 10:04:58 pm »

A bit of tail wagging the dog perhaps Nick! Build the model first and then worry about the labels.  :}

The reality is that if you build it then absolutely no one is going to question what hieroglyphics are stuck onto the netting of the stern walk.

Kongo and Tiger were similar in many ways, not least their main gun layout and therei s still argument as to which influenced the other but as built I think Tiger was by far the best looking design before they shifted the mast aft. There are some interesting conjectures online looking at how Tiger might have been modernised for service in WW2. She would have been capable of seeing off Scharnhord or Gneisenau for example.

Personally I think Kongo looked better in her later configurations.

Colin
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Phil22

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2023, 11:29:20 am »

Hi Nick,

To add to the comments made so far, I have another idea for the reading that my Japanese friend agrees is a strong possibility.
The ship is known as Kongou and also Konkau according to the Japanese Wiki page.

Kongou
-------
hiragana = こんごう
katakana = コンゴウ
kanji = 金剛

Konkau
-------
hiragana = こんかう
katakana = コンカウ

Being the starboard side, to me the characters in the photograph look like Konkau in reverse order but with each character still the correct way around reading: うかんこ

To help with any research of Japanese sites for images etc, along with the ship's name you might want to try combinations of these search terms in Google (each separated by a space):

photograph = shashin 写真
history = rekishi 歴史
battleship = senkan 戦艦
warship = gunkan 軍艦

Hope this helps,
Phil
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raflaunches

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #15 on: March 09, 2023, 11:40:14 am »

Hi Phil


Thank you for the response, thatís extremely helpful.  :-))
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Nick B

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Backerther

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #16 on: March 09, 2023, 03:20:48 pm »

Nick;


I perfectly agree to Phil's explanation on the Kongou(your spelling;Kongo)
In Hiragana spelling; こんかうis correct. You have to pronounce it Kongo(English-like) or Kongou(Japanese- like)
However, writing at stern has to be うかんこ which is reverse to normal spelling in present days.
In any case,Hiragana name of こんかうis pronounced "Konkau" literally in true meaning, and could never be read Kongou nor Kongo presently.
This spelling of こんかうwas based on the old Japanese syllabary characters used until 1946. 
So, to conclude; you should write うかんこat stern(as seen in the Nick's pic) and pronounce or write it Kongo (or Kongou).
All of these spellings and pronunciation was from pre-war days style and was abolished ,renewed around 1946


Backerther

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Geoff

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #17 on: March 09, 2023, 03:23:35 pm »

Wow, what an interesting question. Sorry Nick, I have nothing to add but I do have plans of Kongo in her original configuration and later configurations drawn to a length of 65cm. They are copies of the original plans in a book I inherited, I have never seen another copy - it has plans of nearly all the Japanese battleships, cruisers and carriers since Mikasa!


I'll post some pictures shortly.


Cheers


Geoff
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raflaunches

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #18 on: March 09, 2023, 03:28:17 pm »

Hi Backerther


Thank you for explaining everything, and confirming the spelling and pronunciation. I donít like to put wrong names or say the name incorrectly on any of my models as I think it doesnít look or sound respectful to the nationís that built or operated the ship in question.
I shall write down the correct name and spelling in my research folder for future reference.
Many thanks once again.


Nick
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Nick B

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raflaunches

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #19 on: March 09, 2023, 03:30:18 pm »

Hi Geoff


Iíd be most grateful to see the plans in her original layout. Iíve got a PDF from a Facebook friend in America but isnít easy to print them off without the correct printers or program.
Look forward to seeing you again soon.
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Nick B

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Geoff

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #20 on: March 09, 2023, 03:37:49 pm »

Pictures
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raflaunches

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #21 on: March 09, 2023, 03:51:30 pm »

Many thanks Geoff. I shall peruse these at my leisure.
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Nick B

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Geoff

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #22 on: March 09, 2023, 03:52:24 pm »

Perhaps Phil's friend can tell me about the book as strangely enough I've never been able to read the txt!!


Cheers


Geoff


P.S. Nick I've sent you an e-mail
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Backerther

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #23 on: March 10, 2023, 04:35:21 am »

You seem to have a very useful and technical book of IJN warships, judging from very famous names of editorial staffs
in the publishing committee seen in the above pic.
They are mostly warship designers /technical staffs of IJN arsenals until the end of WW2.
The names even I know in the pic are;
     牧野茂  Shigeru Makino, Very famous as a designing staff of IJN battleship Yamato   Chief of the above committee          堀元美 Motoyoshi Hori,   ex-warship technical officer of IJN
   福井静夫 Shizuo Hukui ,    ex-warship designing officer of IJN
The publishing company (原書房 Harashobo)is also very famous even now, especially in the fields of war and diplomatic histories of Japan.


Backerther
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Geoff

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Re: Kongo written in Hiragana
« Reply #24 on: March 10, 2023, 10:40:48 am »

Thank you, Backerther, now I know a little more about the book. My father acquired it about 50 plus years ago as he always had an interest in the Japanese navy. He had some Japanese contacts through business in those days. I seem to recall as a child it was very expensive even then!


I rather think there would have been a very limited production run. I've tried to look it up in the past but never found anything. It has similar plans including  Battleships,  includes plans for the projected Amagi class, carriers, heavy cruisers, seaplane tenders, destroyers, submarines and even the odd gunboat!


It does include Yamato but externally more of a sketch but does provide detailed internal plans. Its an interesting book as they are clearly copies of original plans which were thought to have been destroyed.


Cheers


Geoff

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