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Table 1 - The 46 Syllables of the Japanese Syllabary (romanized)

a ka sa ta na ha ma ya ra wa n
i ki shi chi ni hi mi ri
u ku su tsu nu fu mu yu ru
e ke se te ne he me re
o ko so to no ho mo yo ro wo

Table 2 - The 46 Syllables of the Japanese Syllabary called the gojuon or 50 sounds (Hiragana)

あ か さ た な は ま や ら わ ん
い き し ち に ひ み り
う く す つ ぬ ふ む ゆ る
え け せ て ね へ め れ
お こ そ と の ほ も よ ろ を

When the tsu syllable is added before the syllables beginning with k,p, and t (ie. the
consonants sounds of k,p, or t), a hardened double consonant sound is produced. You
literally spit out the sounds or, as I like to put it, smack the consonants. To better
understand where I am coming from, imagine two billiard balls sitting on a pool table.
One of the balls is a word that contains a single consonant sound like k, the other ball is
the syllable tsu. Now shoot the k ball with your cue ball and when they hit upon impact
kk sound. when the consonant sounds are doubled. This doubled consonant phenomenon
can be likened to the English word bookkeeper. In bookkeeper the sound of the consonant
k is doubled, adding the syllable tsu to ka, ki, ku, ke, ko, ta chi, tsu, te, to or,
pa,pi,pu,pe,or po doubles the consonant sound of the consonant sound of the syllable
immediately following it.

Japanese pronunciation rule #1 - A small つ (tsu) doubles the consonant

sound that immediately follows it.

makka – deep red, completely red
jikken – experiment or test
shuppan – publish , shuppatsu – departure
zettai – absoluteness
tokkyo – patent (not the city toukyou which has the elongated
happi – the English word happy in katakana
gakkou – school
chotto – a little bit, a dink
appuru - apple

When n is not connected to a vowel (ie. usage of the last syllable of the Japanese
syllabary or ん (n) , it is like a syllable unto itself. It receives a full count if language
were a music it would receive the same amount of time that a 2 lettered syllable
receives., and is denoted by the apostrophe ‘. For example:
1. Kin’en this is Japanese for no smoking not kinen or the word for anniversary.
so it has 4 syllables and the word for anniversary has 3.

To get a better feel of how the Japanese say words that begin with ra, ri, ru, re, or
ro, do this: First, say to yourself in English the word Eddy then, make sure the tip of
your tongue is touching delicately behind the upper front teeth and say it again
Pronouncing it with just the right amount of lightness of tongue and a flicking
forward of the tongue in this manner, you will come close to an acceptable
pronunciation of the Japanese word for eri or collar.