[kah-tuh-kah-nuh; Japanese kah-tah-kah-nah]
the more angular, less commonly used of the two Japanese syllabaries.
Origin of katakana
1720–30; < Japanese, equivalent to kata part (of kanji) + kana kana
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
one of the two systems of syllabic writing employed for the representation of Japanese, based on Chinese ideograms. It is used mainly for foreign or foreign-derived words
Word Origin for katakana
Japanese, from kata side + 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
from Japanese katakana, from kata "side" + kana "borrowed letter(s)."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper