Sunday, May 31, 2015

Writing Email in Japanese: Some Styles

Style in writing letter/email in Japanese maybe varies from one to other. I thought that this might be of some use based on to whom and the email content. Feel free to add any additional information regarding social customes of written material.

Here are some styles when writing email in Japanese,
First think you do in any letter is state who you are addressing. In English it would look something like "Dear + Name," or "To + Name," in Japanese it looks a lot like the second version "name + へ、” へ is the directional target marker so it could be translated as to, example:
    山田さんへ、

    ...email content....

    これからも、よろしくお願いします
    バグスより
After the name you have a few options as to what you do next. Formal letter (I.E. A letter to your boss, a company, or someone you don`t know) its best to start with the phras,

    拝啓、
    haikei

    ...email content...

    敬具
    keigu

Which is the English equivalent of sincerely. for more personal letter you can skip this step and move streight to the body of the letter. The first part of the main letter should always talk about the addresses health, the current weather and inquire as to the health of the addresses friends and family. from there you can move onto your reason for writting. Informal style, Although it is not advised, you can skip all the small talk by replacing 拝啓 with :
    前略
    ぜんりゃく

    ....email content.....

    草々
    sousou
meaning "in a quick fashion. well that is a little about letters in Japan. I hope it helps. Alternative, example
    国分さん、
       バグスです

    ...email content...
    
    以上です。
The last is the most common I used both in University and at works.
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