“Kutoten“ 句読点 (punctuation) in Japanese is borrowed from English (or other Western languages). The Japanese scribe Kukai in his “Sango Shiki”, 797 C.E. text only uses “end punctuation” , of the ‘period’. Kukai is (by legend) the originator of the Japanese writing system.
In this blog, English words replaces all Japanese “hiragana” loan-words. The “hiragana” script adds nothing to the English words (except “pronunciation”).
In this blog, the “punctuation” is any Japanese symbols used today. This includes “punctuation symbols” commonly used in the English language.
The “Fall of Rome” beginning in 395 C.E. resulted in the loss of the dichotomy of Latin or Greek languages in Western civilization (see map below). The “punctuation marks” derivative of this Empire were incorporated eventually into the Japanese script of Kukai. Constantinople remained the capital of the half-empire, until its fall in 1453 C.E.
The “Johannes Gutenberg Bible” of 1454 C.E.would revolutionize Western society with “press-printed, paper-page” books.
The Japanese adaptation of “punctuation marks” is the result of this influence. The Chinese language is not the source of modern Japanese punctuation.
As a final note, the Japanese “period” is a punctuation mark made by a small open-circle (not a solid-dot). I give an example of this punctuation mark difference with English below.
Again, the Japanese “period” punctuation mark (the only mark usually) is a “small-open circle (not a solid-dot) in 句読点 “kutoten”くとうてん Japanese punctuation.
Punctuation marks a “pause” in speech and is essential to all writing systems. The “pause” marks allows the reader to understand separate words of a sentence.
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