The translation “Seijō no Ran (青条の蘭)”-#8.

   I’ve posted the chapter 4, “Seijō no Ran (青条の蘭)” after a long interval.

   I have added some new explanations to the notes.

   My translation is not progressing as much as I hope (;´o`).

8 replies on “The translation “Seijō no Ran (青条の蘭)”-#8.”

Hello and thanks
being a japanese student note #36 is particularly interesting. How came that the kanji for 夏 takes the meaning of “military”?
Another question about kirins: is there a specific reason why female kirin are called “rin” and male kirin ar called “ki”? I’ve looked up in the dictionary and the two kanji seem to have almost the same meaning.

Hi Shizuka!

Actually, 夏 doesn’t have “military” as its meanings. Why does 夏官 mean “Military Administration”? It comes from the ancient Chinese book Shurai(周礼) which was written in Shunjū(春秋) era(= 772 BC – 476 BC). Shurai is a lumping of legal documents. I think Ono sensei borrows a lot of terms and administrative organs from the book. In it, 夏官司馬 is a military department. See the link above.

> the two kanji seem to have almost the same meaning.
What kind dictionary do you use? Even if you don’t use very academic one, I think it has the explanation of 麒 and 麟. But if you use a dictionary for beginners, it might not have the explanation. Actually, we already find the explanation of 麒 and 麟 even in very old books.

As I cannot find a good online Japanese-English kanji dictionary, I introduce Online 康煕字典 for you. 康煕字典 is one of the most authoritative Chinese dictionaries and is not so old because of completed in 1716. In it, you can see “牡曰麒,牝曰麟“.
牡 = male, 牝 = female, 曰 = is called.

Thank you for the answer…It was quite difficult to understand well because I don’t know chinese and I’ve barely figured out how navigate the site…^_^I can’t figure what exactly #7sentence means even with a translator ;_; But I think I understood that 麟 is the kanji for the female chinese unicorn and is read “lin” while 麒 is the kanji for a legendary auspicious best (the dictionary doesn’t specify if a qilin or another animal). And in that sentence it’s explained.
On the japanese side the dictionaries I’ve looked up in, never make any difference (in meaning) between the two kanji.
Now I’m reading a chapter (25th) full of explanations about measurament units and political and administrative structure. I’m taking notes because is quite hard to remember everyting ^^
Sure Ono sensei made a great work creating Juuni kokuki world but I have to find a political&administrative and other Juuni kokuki related things a little easy to understand ^^.
I’ve find a wikia but I haven’t dig deep in it yet.
Oh and I’m going to use your notes…Can I print them ( just to be able to have them everywhere with me) or better put them in my ebook reader?
Anyway great work you’r doing with these notes!!!

Hi, you have a long reply!! (^o^)

I made a new thread because the comment width was so narrow.

Most of the online dictionaries support contemporary writings only. On the other hand, #7sentence is from Chinese classics. We, I mean the Japanese, still learn Chinese classics a little in our school days. Not much but still. So, I try to explain #7sentence.

To put simply, the ‘《唐韻》《集韻》《韻會》渠之切《正韻》渠宜切, 𠀤音其。’ part shows what sound 麒 had in old Chinese. Nowadays, the Chinese use pinyin(拼音) system. But before that, the Chinese have had kanjis only as their traditional letters, so they described all things by kanjis even about how they read a kanji.

The ‘《說文》仁獸也。麕身牛尾,一角。張揖云:牡曰麒,牝曰麟。郭璞曰:麒似麟而無角。’ part does the explanation of 麒.

仁獸也 = It has perfect virtue and is a merciful animal.
麕身牛尾,一角。 = Its body resembles a roe deer and its tail resembles a cow, and has a horn.
張揖云:牡曰麒,牝曰麟。 = 張揖 said: Males called 麒, females called 麟.
郭璞曰:麒似麟而無角。 = 郭璞 said: 麒 resembles 麟, but has no horn.


  1. = 張揖(Choyū) was a person of Wei(魏: 220 AD – 266 AD). He is a savant and completed the dictionary 廣雅(Kōga).
  2. = 郭璞(Kakuhaku)’s dates are 276 AD to 324 AD. He was a poet and a diviner.
  3. = Choyū, Kōga, Kakuhaku, all of them are Japanese readings of the kanjis. The Chinese have different sounds as their readings.

> On the japanese side ~ between the two kanji.
Hmmm. We have 国語辞典 and 漢和辞典. To put simply, 国語辞典 is a dictionary of contemporary Japanese language and 漢和辞典 is a dictionary of kanjis for Japanese people today.
When you look up a kanji in a dictionary, you should use 漢和辞典 though I don’t know English version exists or not. I can find it easily on the 漢和辞典 I have. See the image I added red encircling lines.

By the way, what is 25th chapter? I get you are reading “A thousand league of winds…” now. But the book I have has only prologue, 21 chapters and epilogue. Are you reading another new book?

Thank for the explanation. I like long answers 😉 Now I see why I get all those strange translations ^^ I’ve searched if there is a japanese->english translation availabe on web, of the two dictiories you mentioned but it seems there isn’t. Actually I couldn’t find even a japanese -> japanese online edition. If such a thing does exist could you tell me ?
Even if searching japanese in japanese is a little hard it’s still better than nothing and maye it can help me improve a little.

About A thousand miles of wind, I’m reading Eugene Woodbury translation (specifically the epub compilation). I’ve checked the online version and it seems composed of two books . Book 1 with a prologue, nine parts with 36 chapter in total. Book 2 with part 10 to 21 for a sum of 80 chapters. I don’t know the original number of chapters because I don’t have the original text but if I guessed right the Woodbury’s parts are the same of the original chapters 21 parts = 21 chapters. I don’t know to what correspond the 80 “Eugene’s chapters”. Maybe in the original text there’s some kind of sub-divisions of the chapters? Or maybe Eugene sub-divided the chapters for his own convenience?

After Thousand miles of wind I’m quite uncertain how to procede. I like both En rouler and his kirin and the black kirin but also Soushu and Kyuoki (and their funny relationship), I know there are standalone novels about all of them. But I’d also like to know if Keiki will stop sighing one day or another and his relationship with Youko will become more usefull and productive both for them and the country. I mean having your supposed conseulor sighing all the time is quite tiresome…


I’ve realized to find online 漢和辞典s is very difficult, grrr. But probably this is helpful for you though this is not a real 漢和辞典 but a 国語辞典 or something.

> (specifically the epub compilation)
I can’t see the epub version. Where can I find it? Maybe, is it a pay e-book? But I remember you wrote the 25th is ‘full of explanations about measurement units and political and administrative structure’, so, now I think it is his notes originally and the epub put them together when compiling.

Thanks for the link, I’ve bookmarked it in my dictionaries bookmarks list.
About Thousand Leagues of Wind’s infamous chapter 25 ^^ I’ve checked it, I had to re-read it anyway, and here is the link to it. It’s definitively in the main plot not a note written by the translator.

I saw your link. Sorry, I was wrong. Now I’ve understood. As you said, it is right that ‘chapters 21 = parts 21 and 80 Eugene’s chapters = sub-divisions of the chapters’. The 25th chapter = the original chapter 6 section 2. He shows it on the page, like this.

When you re-read the chapter 25, look at all things from Yōko’s point of view (^_-).

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