[heer-uh-gah-nuh; Japanese hee-rah-gah-nah]
- the cursive and more widely used of the two Japanese syllabaries.
Origin of hiragana
1815–25; < Japanese, equivalent to hira ordinary (earlier f(y)ira < *pira) + -gana, combining form of kana kana
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- one of the Japanese systems of syllabic writing based on Chinese cursive ideograms. The more widely used of the two current systems, it is employed in newspapers and general literatureCompare katakana
from Japanese: flat kana
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for hiragana
from Japanese hiragana, from hira "plain" + kana "borrowed letter(s)."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper