Just a skosh of Japanese to English loan words – 英会話・英語 アミック


A few months ago, a friend introduced me to WaniKani.com as a way to learn kanji. Instead of simple symbol-meaning flashcards, the site gives you a mnemonic or other memory device to help you remember the reading for each kanji it teaches.

The other day I was introduced to the word 少し (sukoshi), meaning ‘a little’. I didn’t think anything special of it until I looked at the reading notes: 

Did you know that this word created an English word you probably already know? Have you ever heard someone say “just a skosh”? That’s 少し! Hopefully you know this English word and therefore know this Japanese word as well.

This blew my mind, and if you had asked me before where I thought ‘skosh’ originated from I probably would have guessed from a Scandinavian or Indigenous peoples’ language. It also made me wonder what other Japanese words have snuck into the English language without me realizing, of which I found a few more that surprised me:

  • Emoji (e/ “picture” +  moji /文字 “character”)
  • Soy (I knew that shoyu/醤油 was Japanese for soy sauce but never put two and two together)
  • Tycoon (from 大君 meaning ‘high commander’ or ‘great prince’)
  • Honcho (from 班長 hanchō, meaning ‘head of something’ or ‘chief’)
  • Rickshaw (from 人力車 jinrikisha/ninryokusha)






最近のグローバル化に伴い、英会話スクールの必要性はますます増加しております。特に、スピーキング・リスニング・ライティング・リーディングの4技能をバランスよく持つ人材が必要とされており、英検など4技能対応型の試験への期待も高まっております。小学校の英語必修化や資格試験を重視する大学入試の大幅な変更もすぐそこに迫って来ている中、 アミック・イングリッシュセンターとしては、英検やTOEICの対策にも力を入れており、優秀な外国人及び日本人講師を積極的に採用しております。