Many know that baka (馬鹿) in Japanese literally means idiot, stupid, dumb, fool, goofy, clown, and several other cursing in just one word. Only that is really the true meaning of the word? What is its origin and its uses? What is the meaning of the expressions that usually accompany the word? In this article we will really understand what baka means in Japanese.
The word baka (馬鹿 / ばか / バカ) can be written with the Japanese ideograms (kanji), or with the alphabets hiragana and katakana. The word baka is composed with the ideogram of horse (馬) and deer (鹿) indicating that the origin is from 2 anime that are also used as an insult in Brazil and other countries.
The word can also be used to refer to something trivial, crazy or absurd. It can also be used to refer to something silly, boring, stupid, absurd and ridiculous. The word is also used as the name of a sea shell called Mactra chinensis.
Origin and meaning of the word Baka
We’ve made it clear what baka really means in Japanese. Only there are still other details that were not clear. In order to understand, we need to examine more closely the origin of the word baka. There are several theories about the origin of this word, let’s look at some things and you can decide for yourself.
Some believe it all started when a eunuch named Choko planned a rebellion against the 2nd Kogai Emperor of the Qin Dynasty in China. He took a deer and introduced the Emperor saying he brought a rare horse. Some agreed in fear of him, those who disagreed were killed.
Another theory came from the word mora (莫迦) which means ignorance and illusion. It is believed that the monks began to switch the reading from mora to baka. Another theory suggests that the word baka came from the expression wakamono (若者) which means young people. Others say that the word arose from the expression bankrupt family which in Zen scripture is pronounced baka.
Using the expression baka
As you have noticed, the word baka has several different uses. Sometimes the tone of your voice defines the way you are insulting and offending the person. You can simply speak randomly and harmlessly or even call the person strongly dumb. Thus, the word can also be used in a friendly and humorous manner.
It is common to make combinations of words together with baka to create different meanings and offenses. We will share some below:
- Bakayarou (馬鹿野郎) Stupid guy;
- Bakamono (ばかもの) Stupid person;
- Oobaka (大馬鹿) Big idiot;
- Bakanakotowoshita (馬鹿なことをした) – To regret that you did something stupid;
The word baka is used in several other good expressions. Below we will see the word being used in a good way:
- Bakashoujiki (馬鹿正直) = Ingenuously honest, super honest;
- Bakadekai (馬鹿デカイ) Huge, gigantic, immense, stupidly big;
- Bakauke (馬鹿受) Super funny, super popular, super well received;
The word is also often used in phrases and expressions that indicate a person is crazy about something, a fan of something. The mere fact that you are studying Japanese is already a reason for someone to say nihongo-baka, not as an insult but for the purpose of your effort.
There are so many expressions related to baka that it is common for you to hear this word several times in animes, and not just when insulting or calling someone dumb.
Curiosities about the word baka
Meaning of the expression: Bakabakashi – Refers to an action, idea or something unreasonable and out of reality, without nexus or coherence, a foolish subject that does not deserve to be discussed or is “nonsense”.
Did you know? Bengali, the official language of Bangladesh, has its origins in Sanskrit, where the word “baka” means “stupid person.
Did you know that? In World War II, the Japanese made a bombshell that came off the bomber. The bomb was called Ohka (cherry blossom). The irony is that the American enemies themselves put the B.A.K.A. code to refer to this bomb from the Japanese.
Baka in other dialects
To finish the article more completely, we will leave a list of variations of the word baka in other dialects. The provinces that don’t appear on the list is because they don’t usually use a variation but the common word. Don’t forget to share the article, it took a long time to do so. What is your opinion on the subject? We are also waiting for!
- Aichi = taake (たーけ)
- Akita = bakake (ばかけ)
- Aomori = honjinashi (ほんじなし)
- Ehime = ponke (ぽんけ)
- Fukui = aho (あほ)
- Fukuoka = anpontan (あんぽんたん)
- Gifu = tawake (たわけ)
- Hokkaido = hankakusai (はんかくさい)
- Hyogo = dabo (だぼ)
- Ibaraki = dere (でれ)
- Ishikawa = dara (だら)
- Iwate = doboke (とぼけ)
- Kagawa = hokko (ほっこ)
- Kochi = ahou (あほー)
- Kumamoto = anpontan (あんぽんたん)
- Kyoto = aho (あほ)
- Mie = ango (あんご)
- Miyagi = hondenasu (ほんでなす)
- Miyazaki = shichirin (しちりん)
- Nagano = mekesaku (ぬけさく)
- Nara = aho (あほ)
- Oita = bakatan (ばかたん)
- Okayama = angou (あんごー)
- Okinawa = furaa (ふらー)
- Osaka = doaho (どあほ)
- Saga = nitohasshu (にとはっしゅ)
- Shiga = ahou (あほー)
- Shimane = daraji (だらじ)
- Tochigi = usubaga (うすばが)
- Tokushima = aho (あほ)
- Tottori = darazu (だらず)
- Toyama = dara (だら)
- Wakayama = aho (あほ)
- Yamagata = anpontan (あんぽんたん)
- Yamanashi = mekesaku (ぬけさく)