Japanese (日本語, [nihoŋɡo] ) is a language spoken by over 130 million people in Japan and in Japanese emigrant communities. It is a member of the Japonic (or Japanese-Ryukyuan) language family. There are a number of proposed relationships with other languages, but none have gained general acceptance. It is an agglutinative language and is distinguished by a complex system of honorifics reflecting the hierarchical nature of Japanese society, with verb forms and particular vocabulary to indicate the relative status of the speaker, the listener, and a person mentioned in conversation (regardless of their presence). The sound inventory of Japanese is relatively small, and it has a lexically distinct pitch-accent system. It is a mora-timed language.
The Japanese language is written with a combination of three different types of scripts: modified Chinese characters called kanji (漢字), and two syllabic scripts made up of modified Chinese characters, hiragana (
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