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Japanese

KI in hiragana: き

The syllable ‘ki’ in hiragana is written き.

き ’ki’ hiragana stroke order

き has three strokes:

  • A short, left to right stroke that slopes slightly upwards.
  • Another similar stroke below the first.
  • A vertical stroke that goes down through the first two, sloping slightly to the right, before curving back round underneath.

Note that many computer fonts display an alternate writing with four strokes, where the final loop stroke is separate from the central vertical stroke.

Diagram of KI hiragana stroke order (き)

き ’ki’ hiragana mnemonic

See also: Making mnemonics

This image should help you to remember how to write ‘ki’ in hiragana by associating the letters ki with the shape of き. Remember that the English words used here are not a pronunciation guide. They help you to remember how to write き, not how to say it.

To learn pronunciation you need to get a lot of listening and speaking practice done. Online services like JapanesePod 101 can help with that.

き is a key. A mnemonic image for KI, in which き is a key

き ’ki’ hiragana origins

き is derived from the kanji 幾 (ki) . This is pronounced in Mandarin Chinese (hanzi) and ki in Korean (hanja).

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