寂しい: sabishii, samishii

Δημήτρης

Senior Member
Cypriot Greek
Hello.
寂しい is often listed to have two possible pronunciations, samishii and sabishii.
I noticed that this m/b is not that rare with adjectives, as there is 寒い (samui/sabui) and maybe this happens in some nouns too (I thought I had an example, but I don't remember it).
Anyway. In the case of 寒い I noticed that weather is samui but people and jokes can be sabui. Maybe I am overthinking it, but it seems that bu goes with the metaphorical usage.

What about 寂しい? I think I mostly hear "sabisii". Is there cases that samishii is used?

Or is it all just dialectical and not related to the meaning?
 
  • Wishfull

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    I think they are just regional difference. (dialect).

    I read 寂しい as both "samishii" and "sabishii" .

    I never read 寒い as "sabui". I wonder it might be Touhoku-dialect.
    I read 寒い as both "samui" and "samii".
    I realize that "samii" is our dialect, not standard Japanese.
     

    akimura

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    I think I mostly hear "sabisii". Is there cases that samishii is used?
    Both sabishii and samishii are equally used and interchangeable. According to 大辞林, sabishii has been around longer. Samishii has been around since late medieval ages.

    Or is it all just dialectical ...?
    It could be even personal. I realize I personally use samishii in spoken Japanese as it's easier to say, and use sabishii in written Japanese as it sounds like it has a longer history (and it does) and thus sounds more standard (but actually both forms are well accepted as standard forms). Well, in written Japanese, my readers won't notice whether it's sabishii or samishii because it's written with kanji as 寂しい.:)
     
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