ka·​ta·​ka·​na | \ ˌkä-tə-ˈkä-nə How to pronounce katakana (audio) \

Definition of katakana

: the form of Japanese syllabic writing used especially for scientific terms, official documents, and words adopted from other languages — compare hiragana

Examples of katakana in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Mē-mē Bēkari, says the katakana script above, which means the creature must be a sheep. Frances Leech, Longreads, "Forgetting the Madeleine," 3 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'katakana.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of katakana

1727, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for katakana

Japanese, from kata part + kana kana

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The first known use of katakana was in 1727

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Cite this Entry

“Katakana.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/katakana. Accessed 8 Aug. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on katakana

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about katakana

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