Hiragana: Consonant + y + Vowel; Syllabic /n/

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 . In JSL this syllable /n/ is represented as /n/.

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