Yodan vs Shidan?

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by Grappleboxing, May 19, 2014.

  1. Grappleboxing

    Grappleboxing Brown Belt

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    Why is it that a 4th degree black belt is called a Yodan instead of a Shidan when everything else, beside 1st degree Shodan, follows the Japanese number system?

    I apologize if this isn't the right section to post this.
     
  2. Thai Otoshi

    Thai Otoshi Gold Belt

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    "yon" also means "four".
     
  3. Jonas g33k

    Jonas g33k Blue Belt

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    Ah, "shi" is homonymous with 「死」 which means death. So Japanese people tend to avoid this bad omen by using the second prononciation of 4 which is "yon".
     
  4. Calibur

    Calibur Jiu Jitsu Snob

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    Japanese use the word yon for some situations and shi for others. When it comes to stuf like dates (shigatsu/April) or titles (yondan/ 4th level) the word is set. The general number can be used interchangeably.

    Same goes for the number 9 with the word kyu and ku and the number 7 with the word shichi or nana.
     
  5. Grappleboxing

    Grappleboxing Brown Belt

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    So Shi could mean four or death, depending on the kanji used? So that is why they used Yondan instead of Shidan, I see.
     
  6. Harukaze

    Harukaze Brown Belt

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    More of a coincidence than anything. The real reason is just Japanese grammatical rules, which can be without much of a real reason sometimes (and inconsistent as well). If you really want a push-comes-to-shove reason, it probably has more to do with kunyomi (native Yamato pronunciation) versus onyomi (Chinese-style pronunciation) more than anything else (a topic that is hard to explain without some Japanese language background).
     

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