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when is 道 read as do or michi? (japanese)?
i know that 道 can be read as do or michi but does it make a difference when you read it the other way? what is the difference between the 2?
- JamesLv 51 decade agoFavorite Answer
If you see 道 by itself, it is always read as "michi" (road, street, path, way).
If you see it as part of a compound word, it the reading depends on the word (for example, 北海道 "Hokkaido" or 片道 "katamichi").
There is no difference in meaning between the two because they simply two readings of the same word. "dou" is the on'yomi (Japanese reading of a kanji character based on the original Chinese pronunciation) and "michi" is the kun'yomi (native Japanese reading of a kanji character based on the original ancient Japanese word of that meaning.).
There are 790 words that contain 道 and there is no rule (other than the above) to know when to use michi or dou, so we basically have to learn the differences case by case, unfortunately. However, "dou" seems to be much more common, and often deals with a "way" or a spiritual "path" rather than a physical road. some common "dou" words are:
道具 (どうぐ, dōgu): tool
道路 (どうろ, dōro): road
鉄道 (てつどう, tetsudō): railway
道徳 (どうとく, dōtoku): ethics
報道 (ほうどう, hōdō): broadcast
軌道 (きどう, kidō): orbit
赤道 (せきどう, sekidō): equator
食道 (しょくどう, shokudō): oesophagus
水道 (すいどう, suidō): water supply
道教 (どうきょう, dōkyō): Taoism
道理 (どうり, dōri): rational
柔道 (じゅうどう, jūdō): judo
合気道 (あいきどう, aikidō): aikido
書道 (しょどう, shodō): calligraphy
武道 (ぶどう, budō): budo
茶道 (さどう, sadō): tea ceremony
花道 (かどう, kadō): flower arrangement
Michi more often seems to deal with a physical "road" or "journey". some common "michi" words are:
帰り道 [かえりみち: KAERIMICHI] (n) the way back or home, return trip.
近道 [ちかみち: CHIKAMICHI] (n,vs) short way, shortcut.
片道 [かたみち: KATAMICHI] (n,adj-no) one-way (trip).
道すがら [みちすがら: MICHISUGARA] (adv) along the road, along the way
道なき道 [みちなきみち: MICHINAKIMICHI] (exp) trackless path
道を訊く [みちをきく: MICHIWOKIKU] (exp,v5k) to ask the way
道を分かる [みちをわかる: MICHIWAKARU] (exp,v5k) to know the waySource(s): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kanji#On.27yomi_.28Ch... http://japanesestudynow.com/?p=2076 http://www.tofugu.com/2010/03/23/the-types-of-kanj...
- JeffreyLv 51 decade ago
Stand alone noun: michi.
If it's part of another word, it's do.
MIchi de tatte iru. (I'm standing in the street).
No difference just chinese-based pronucation. Like when we use words in english or use words that have latin roots.
Like when you say someone is a Beginner or you call someone a Novice (Nova meaning New in Latin).
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