Posted: 3rd Nov 2023
Hello and welcome to the Ippo Ippo Japanese Word of the Week!
As I'm currently suffering from a slight wrist injury (the inspiration for the topic of this post), I haven't been able to do much blog writing of late. However, I'm back today with a short intro to a Japanese word that's long amused me.
This Week's Word Is...
- In hiragana: てくび
- In rōmaji: tekubi
Before We Begin
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What Does 手首 (tekubi) Mean?
手首 (tekubi) means "wrist". However, the fun part of this word is its literal meaning:
- 手 (te) = hand
- 首 (kubi) = neck
So: your wrist is your "hand neck" in Japanese!
How to Use 手首 (tekubi) in a Sentence
This word is a little more straightforward than some of the others we've seen in this Word of the Week series. Even so, let's take a look at some potentially handy phrases involving wrists.
- 手首をケガしました。(Tekubi wo kega shimashita - [I] injured my wrist)
- 手首が痛いです。(Tekubi ga itai desu - [My] wrist hurts)
- 手首の骨を折りました。(Tekubi no hone wo orimashita - [I] broke my wrist)
- 警官は私の手首を捕まえた。(Keikan wa watashi no tekubi wo tsukamaeta - The police officer grabbed me by the wrist)
Hopefully you won't have to use any of these any time soon!
Bonus Note: Words Similar to 手首 (tekubi)
Considering that "wrist" is "hand neck", what other parts of the body (other than your neck itself) do you think might involve the word 首 (kubi)?
Here are two I know of:
- 足首 (ashikubi - "foot neck", i.e. ankle)
- 乳首 (chikubi - "breast neck", i.e. nipple)
For more words ending in 首, go to a dictionary such as jisho.org and try searching "?首".
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