Mastering Numbers: How to Say Thirteen in Japanese

In this section, we will provide a comprehensive guide on how to say “Thirteen” in Japanese, which is a basic yet critical number to learn. By mastering this number, you can enhance your language skills and expand your knowledge of Japanese numerals. We will cover the pronunciation, writing, and translation of “Thirteen” in Japanese, including the Japanese word for “Thirteen” and how to write it in Japanese characters. Additionally, we will share tips on how to translate “Thirteen” from English to Japanese and explore the unique counting method used in the Japanese number system.

Understanding the Japanese Number System

To effectively say “Thirteen” in Japanese, it’s essential to understand the Japanese number system. In Japanese, numbers are constructed by combining individual numerals, with the exception of the numbers 11 through 19, which have their own unique words.

It’s also important to note that Japanese has two different sets of numerals. The first set, called the “Arabic numerals,” is used in writing and is the same set of numerals used in Western cultures. The second set, called “Japanese numerals,” is used in speech and can be more challenging to learn for those unfamiliar with the language.

Japanese Numerals

Japanese numerals consist of ten basic numerals, which are used to create all other numbers. These numerals include:

Kanji Hiragana Romaji English Equivalent
いち ichi One
ni Two
さん san Three
し/よん shi/yon Four
go Five
ろく roku Six
しち/なな shichi/nana Seven
はち hachi Eight
きゅう/く kyuu/ku Nine
じゅう juu Ten

By combining these numerals, you can create any number up to 99, as shown below:

十 (juu) + 一 (ichi) = 十一 (juuichi) = 11

二十 (nijuu) + 三 (san) = 二十三 (nijuu san) = 23

Once you’ve mastered these basic numerals, you’re well on your way to counting and expressing numbers in Japanese!

The Japanese Word for Thirteen

To say “Thirteen” in Japanese, we use the Japanese word “十三” (Juusan). This word is composed of two kanji characters: “” (Ju) meaning “ten” and “” (San) meaning “three.”

Understanding the Japanese word for “Thirteen” is important for several reasons. Firstly, it’s necessary for correctly pronouncing the number. Secondly, the word is used in everyday conversation, so being able to recognize it is beneficial for communicating effectively.

The Japanese language has a unique way of constructing words and numbers, and this is especially true for larger numbers. By understanding the components of the word for “Thirteen,” you’ll have a better grasp of how to construct other numbers in Japanese.

Pronouncing Thirteen in Japanese

If you want to say “Thirteen” in Japanese, it’s crucial to master the correct pronunciation. Japanese is a syllabic language, meaning each character represents a distinct sound. However, the emphasis on different syllables can alter the meaning of words.

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The Japanese word for “Thirteen” is “十三” (Juusan). To pronounce “Juusan,” follow these steps:

Japanese Characters Romaji (Romanized) English Pronunciation
Ju Joo
San Sahn
十三 Juusan Joo-sahn

Remember, the pronunciation of “Thirteen” in Japanese is “Joo-sahn.”

To ensure you’re pronouncing the word correctly, try listening to native speakers or using online resources that provide audio pronunciation guides.

Writing Thirteen in Japanese Characters

Japanese writing uses three main scripts: kanji, hiragana, and katakana. Kanji is a system of characters adapted from Chinese, and it is commonly used for words of Japanese and Chinese origin.

To write “Thirteen” in Japanese, we use the kanji characters “十三.” Let’s break down the individual characters:

Kanji Character Reading Meaning Stroke Order
Ju Ten
San Three

The first character, “十,” means “ten.” It is composed of two horizontal lines, which symbolize the number ten. The second character, “三,” means “three.” It is composed of three horizontal lines, which represent the number three. Together, these characters create the word “Juusan,” or “Thirteen.”

When writing kanji, it is important to follow the correct stroke order. This ensures that the character looks neat and readable. You can see the stroke order for “Ju” and “San” in the table above.

Translating Thirteen to Japanese

Translating “Thirteen” from English to Japanese requires a deep understanding of both languages. In Japanese, numerals have unique readings depending on their position and usage. For example, the number “10” is read differently when used as a standalone number versus when it is combined with another digit.

When translating “Thirteen” to Japanese, we use the word “十三” (Juusan). “十” (Ju) means “ten,” and “三” (San) means “three.” The combination of these two kanji characters creates the word for “Thirteen” in Japanese.

It is essential to note that the Japanese numeral system differs from the English one. For instance, in English, we use a base-ten system, while in Japanese, they use a base-ten plus base-four system. This means that numbers 1-4 have unique names, and numbers 5-9 are formed by adding “ten” to the base number.

When translating numbers, it is crucial to understand the cultural connotations of the language. For example, in Japan, the number “four” is considered unlucky as it is pronounced similarly to the word for “death.” Thus, when translating numbers that may have cultural significance, it’s important to consider the context in which they will be used.

Overall, translating “Thirteen” to Japanese requires a firm grasp of both languages and their numeral systems. By understanding the nuances of numeric expression in Japanese, you can gain insight into how native speakers interpret and utilize numbers in everyday conversation.

Further Exploring Japanese Numerals

Now that you’ve learned how to say “Thirteen” in Japanese, let’s explore other numerals in the language. The Japanese number system may seem complicated at first, but it follows a logical pattern once you understand the basics.

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Japanese numerals are constructed by combining specific kanji characters and using a unique counting method. The first ten numerals have their own unique characters, while larger numbers are constructed by combining these characters in different ways.

Here are the first ten Japanese numerals:

Number Japanese
1 一 (Ichi)
2 二 (Ni)
3 三 (San)
4 四 (Yon/Shi)
5 五 (Go)
6 六 (Roku)
7 七 (Shichi/Nana)
8 八 (Hachi)
9 九 (Kyuu/Ku)
10 十 (Ju)

Notice that “Four” has two pronunciations, “Yon” and “Shi.” The pronunciation you use depends on the context and situation, as “Shi” is also the Japanese word for “death,” making it an unlucky number in some circumstances.

Beyond the first ten numerals, Japanese uses a combination of base numbers and multiplication to express larger numbers. For example, “Twenty” in Japanese is “Ni-ju,” meaning “two tens,” while “Thirty” is “San-ju,” meaning “three tens.”

Understanding Japanese numerals is essential for everyday activities like shopping, telling time, and counting objects. With practice, you’ll master the language’s unique number system and be able to express any quantity with ease.


By mastering how to say “Thirteen” in Japanese, you’ve gained a valuable skill that can enhance your language abilities and cultural understanding. Understanding the Japanese number system and the unique counting method used in the language is essential for accurately expressing numerals in everyday conversations.

The Japanese word for “Thirteen” is “Juusan,” which is composed of the kanji characters “十” meaning “ten” and “三” meaning “three.” Understanding the word’s pronunciation and writing is crucial for accurately expressing the number in Japanese.

Pronouncing “Juusan” correctly requires understanding the phonetic sounds and accents used in the Japanese language. Ensuring your articulation of the word is accurate will make your conversations more effective.

The kanji characters used to write “Thirteen” provide insight into its meaning and the stroke order for writing it correctly. Additionally, understanding the nuances of translating numbers is essential for accurately expressing them in another language.

Now that you’ve learned how to say “Thirteen” in Japanese, you have a foundational understanding of Japanese numerals. Continue your language exploration by expanding your knowledge of other Japanese numerals and the language itself.


Q: What is the Japanese word for “Thirteen”?

A: The Japanese word for “Thirteen” is “十三” (Juusan).

Q: How do you pronounce “Thirteen” in Japanese?

A: “Thirteen” is pronounced as “Juusan” in Japanese.

Q: How is “Thirteen” written in Japanese characters?

A: “Thirteen” is written as “十三” using kanji characters in Japanese.

Q: How do you translate “Thirteen” to Japanese?

A: The translation of “Thirteen” to Japanese is “十三” (Juusan).

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