Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Welcome to the gun show

In Japanese, much like English, there are a number of terms used to describe guns. This is amusing considering the strict firearm control laws of the country. Here are a few words that I've managed to dig up that either describe firearms or things associated with them. Answers to the vocabulary below are in bolded blue below.

銃(じゅう): The every day, generic term for a gun.

From 銃, we get the root-word for numerous other types of guns.
  カービン銃: Carbine
  空気銃(くうきじゅう): Pop gun; air gun
  散弾銃(さんだんじゅう): Shotgun (also、ショットガン)
  突撃銃(とつげきじゅう): Assault rifle
  猟銃(りょうじゅう): Hunting rifle
  短銃(たんじゅう): Handgun, pistol
  拳銃(けんじゅう): Handgun (more generic and commonly used than 短銃)
  小銃(しょうじゅう): Rifle

Another seemingly generic term, though less used than 銃, is 鉄砲(てっぽう). This word seems to have connotations of "pop" or "flash," as it is used in 鉄砲水 (flash flood).

Finally, here are some related terms that might help you get through any crime section of the 朝日新聞 or NHK news.

銃規制(じゅうきせい): Gun control ⇒Add 法 to get 銃規制法: Gun control law
散弾(さんだん): Shot, slug (for shotgun)
大砲(たいほう): Artillery, cannon
火器(かき): Firearm; gatt
弾丸(だんがん): Bullet, slug
銃撃(じゅうげき): Hail of bullets ⇒銃撃戦(せん): Gunfight, gunbattle
火薬(かやく): Gunpowder

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