Glossary of Japanese Military Terms

Discussions on all aspects of the Japanese Empire, from the capture of Taiwan until the end of the Second World War.
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David C. Clarke
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Glossary of Japanese Military Terms

Post by David C. Clarke » 09 May 2005 18:21

Okay Folks, now this is a hard one!

The purpose of this Thread is to compile a glossary of Japanese Military Terms, both those used by the I.J.A. and those used by the I.J.N. Of necessity, this Thread will be a work in progress for some time.

That being the case, it seems to me that the best way to start this Thread is by encouraging members to post those terms that they have puzzled over and wish to have translated.

Everyone is welcomed to Participate!!!!!!

Best,
~Akira

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Marcus
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Post by Marcus » 14 May 2005 13:42

A few terms to get things started:

Gun - Army
Yahohei - Field artillery
Koshahotai - Flak unit
Koshaho jinchi - Flak position
Dokuritsu koshahotai - Independent flak unit
Hikojo daitai - Airfield battalion
Hikojo chutai - Airfield company
Yasen kisho butai - Field meteorological unit
Hyoteitai - Artillery plotting unit
Hohei danyaku - Artillery ammunition

/Marcus

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Peter H
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Post by Peter H » 19 May 2005 10:34

Imperial Japanese Army--Dai-Nippon Teikoku Rikugun 大日本帝国陸軍

Imperial Japanese Navy--Dai-Nippon Teikoku Kaigun 大日本帝國海軍

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Andy H
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Post by Andy H » 19 May 2005 11:39

Setsueitei=Naval Construction Units
Tokubetsu=Base Forces
Kaigen kenchiku Shisetsu Butai=Naval Civil Engineering & Construction Units

Andy H

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Acolyte
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Post by Acolyte » 19 May 2005 23:06

My spelling may not be correct but here are a few:

Kinshi Kunsho = Order of the Golden Kite (high-ranking military award issued since 1890)
Daihonei = Imperial Headquarters (High Command of IJA)
hancho = sargeant
Tenno Heika = His Majesty the Emperor (Supreme Commander)
kichigai = madman (used to describe the most fanatical kamikaze pilots)

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Sewer King
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Post by Sewer King » 24 May 2005 17:06

I've noticed that a number of Americans who learn some German did so out of military historical interest, if not from being stationed there in the Cold War. Now I find myself beginning to parse through rudiments of military-technical Japanese in the same way.

At the site of http://www.combinedfleet.com/ijnnames.htm, there's an open call for IJN warship names in brush calligraphy if anyone can render them. I can do calligraphy in the Roman alphabet, but admit to wanting to try the classic Japanese brush at something like this.

The US War Department's Handbook of Japanese Military Forces, TM-E 30-480 of 01 Oct 44 has a good rundown of many Japanese military terms in kanji and romaji, but mostly related to ground and air forces. Did the Navy Department or naval intelligence ever publish any comparable guidebooks on IJN ships and weapons, other than those for ship recognition?

I have never been very clear on the Imperial Army concept of the

Independent mixed AAA brigade -- dokuritsu konsei ryodan koshahotai
Independent mixed inf'y brigade -- dokuritsu konsei ryodan hoheitai

and other units similarly designated. My impression is that these "independent mixed" were tailored combat groups with some of their own attached artillery etc , with no exact table of organization.

The infamous biological warfare unit stations of the IJA were organized under

Water supply and purification department -- Boeki kyusuibu

When I literally translated the kanji for this it came out as "Protection of Liquid Water Supply Section".

David Thompson
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Post by David Thompson » 24 May 2005 19:02

Some pretty basic stuff from the US Army Military Intelligence publication Japanese Ground and Air Forces (Information Bulletin No. 14; 1 May 1942), part 1:
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Post by David Thompson » 24 May 2005 19:04

Part 2:
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John W
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Post by John W » 26 May 2005 05:40

If I remember hearing it right, "sho"/"Show"/"Shou" means "Ensign" or it's equivalent rank ;)

regards,

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Post by zstar » 15 Jun 2005 11:12

Don't forget the infamous Banzai

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asiaticus
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Independent Infantry Battalion (Dokuritsu hohei daitai).

Post by asiaticus » 23 Aug 2005 17:51

Independent Infantry Battalion (Dokuritsu hohei daitai).

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hisashi
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Post by hisashi » 16 Sep 2005 19:29

Hi,
here is my glossaries on Japanese military organizations.
http://maisov.oops.jp/e/glos.htm

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hisashi
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Post by hisashi » 20 Sep 2005 13:08

kanon-ho - large calibre gun for direct fire (such as German 10cm K18 gun)
ryudan-ho - howizer
kyu-ho - (mainly large caribre) mortar (including hakugeki-ho)
hakugeki-ho - mortar, usually 81mm or less. In Japanese Army, hakugeki-ho was operated by artillerymen.
sokusha-ho - high-velocity gun (37mm AT gun)
hohei-ho - infantry gun
kyokusha-hohei-ho - 'high-angle infantry gun', namely mortars operated by infantrymen.
daitai-ho - infantry-gun attached to each battalion (type 92 70mm infantry gun, type 97 81mm mortar)
rentai-ho - gun attached to each infantry regiment. type 41 75mm mountain gun.
sanpo - mountain gun.
yaho - field gun
shuho - main gun (of vessels)

jwilkerson
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Raiders and Flying - oh my !

Post by jwilkerson » 31 Oct 2005 03:09

I'm trying to track down IJA/IJN abn ops and see terms

teishintai = raiding unit

betsudotai = flying columns

but these seem to be for ground based raiding units in China ... does any one know real japanese terms for raiding brigade and raiding flying brigade as used in reference to parachute units - are these the same or diffferent !!!

Thanks for the help !

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asiaticus
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Post by asiaticus » 31 Oct 2005 04:51

From the new Osprey book on the subject, Japanese Paratroop Forces of World War II:

Dai 1 Teishin Dan = 1st Raiding Brigade

The word for "raiding" is " teishin " literally meaning "dash forward" or "dangerous advance" a term derived from the name of Japanese cavalry raiding units of the Russo Japanese War.

Kuchu Teisin Butai = Air Raiding units, meaning all the parachute, glider and dedicated air transport units.
This was abreviated as "Kutei Butai".

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