Consonant + y + Vowel
The Japanese consonant sounds are combined with the /ya/, /yu/ and /yo/ syllables to form a single contracted syllable. For example, /ki/ and /ya/ combine to form the single syllable /kya/, represented in hiragana as きゃ. See the following chart for the complete list of these contracted syllables.
|Consonant/i/ + /ya/||Consonant/i/ + /yu/||Consonant/i/ + /yo/|
|きゃ kya||きゅ kyu||きょ kyo|
|しゃ sya (sha)||しゅ syu (shu)||しょ syo (sho)|
|ちゃ tya (cha)||ちゅ tyu (chu)||ちょ tyo (cho)|
|にゃ nya||にゅ nyu||にょ nyo|
|ひゃ hya||ひゅ hyu||ひょ hyo|
|みゃ mya||みゅ myu||みょ myo|
|りゃ rya||りゅ ryu||りょ ryo|
Note that these contracted syllables are always considered to be one syllable, not two. Compare the two (totally different!) following sounds:
きゃ kya (one syllable)
きや kiya (two syllables)
Syllabic Consonant /n/
When /n/ is followed by another consonant, or if a word ends with /n/, then that /n/ is a syllable in itself, and is written with the symbol ん. In JSL this syllable /n/ is represented as /n/.