What is the reading of the town 北谷?


What is the reading of the town 北谷? ちゃたん or ほくたに? It is a town in Okinawa. Most Japanese read it as Hokutani or Kitatani. Okinawans say Chatan. Is it a dialect? Could all terms be correct?


Posted 2018-07-24T17:36:23.720

Reputation: 1



北谷 is actually not ateji, but the usual kun'yomi きたたに in Okinawan.

In Okinawan, "ki changes to ch", so one gets

kitatanichitatani > chitatan > chatan

the first step being kichi, the second dropping the last i and the last dropping the first t (and contracting chi a > cha).

As a name of the particular town in Okinawa, it has only one reading in Japanese, namely ちゃたん. However, there are other towns written 北谷 with readings きたや or きただに.


Posted 2018-07-24T17:36:23.720

Reputation: 45 989