Japan occupied the Philippines between 1942 and 1945. The invasion of the Philippines started on Dec. 8, 1941, 10 hours after the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Despite the short time they spent here in the Philippines, the Japanese has incurred influences in the different aspects of the Filipino lives. The Japanese influenced some of our customs, food, language and literature. Below are some of the Filipino words that are derived from Japanese terms.
Japanese: だんだん / dandan
Meaning: Slowly or gradually
Japanese: 泥棒 / dorobou
Meaning: Thief or robber
Japanese: じゃんけんぽん / jankenpon
Meaning: Rock-paper-scissors. Most Japanese refer to the game simply as “janken”.
Japanese: 鞄 / kaban
Meaning: While in Filipino it means sack of rice, in Japanese, kaban means bag.
Japanese: 乾杯 / kanpai
Japanese: カラオケ / karaoke
Meaning: A form of musical entertainment, usually social in nature in Filipino culture. However, there is a rumor that a Filipino inventor invented the karaoke and the Japanese simply adapted it.
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Japanese: 蚊取線香 / katori-senkō
Meaning: Mosquito coil, which is a Japanese product to repel mosquitos and other insects during the summer.
Filipino: Tamang-tamà - 偶々
Meaning: Coincidentally, just right
Japanese: 炭酸 / tansan
Meaning: Originally "soda" in Japanese, but changed to "bottle cap" in Tagalog
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Japanese:てゆーか / te-yuka
Japanese: おとうと / otōto
Meaning: While in Japanese it means a younger brother or child, in Filipino it means a young boy.
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