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How to Search

1. Search order
Enter search terms >> Select Japanese-English/ English-Japanese >> Choose the order of the dictionary editions you would like to use >> press the search button.

2. Entering search words
Use the Hepburn romanization system, omitting macrons. The system will convert your search into the form of rōmaji appropriate to the edition of the dictionary selected before the search.

3. Comparing the same word in different editions
Leave the search terms as they are, reselect the edition you want to search, and click the search button.

4. Check the preceding and following pages
Sometimes the entries will be found on the preceding or following page of the one you are directed to. Check by clicking the "previous" and "next" buttons.

5. Manuscripts of the Waei Gorin Shūsei are available for the letters "A" through "K."

6. Regarding the three supplementary pages to the first edition
Select the first edition, type "zz01" into the search box, and click the search button to be directed to the first page. You will be able to read the pages from there.

(please enter the terms of your search using the format shown in the table).

When making a search with the rōmaji format of a particular edition, enter your search terms in accordance with this table. However, as the manuscripts make use of a range of rōmaji styles it is possible that there may be limited results.

The search engine will automatically convert any search terms entered in the rōmaji format so that they are appropriate for that edition. However, Hepburn's romanization system is finalized from the third edition onwards, as Hepburn completed his rōmaji system by trying out various processes and experiments before finalizing his method.

As a result, there are certain terms in the first and second editions of Hepburn's dictionary and in his manuscripts that are difficult to find simply by converting the search terms into an appropriate format. When this occurs, you will need to either peruse the search results by pressing the "forward" and "back" buttons, or search for terms similar in spelling to the one you are looking for in order to find it.

Reasons why a search may not work

If a search of the archives does not yield satisfactory results when using the conversion program for the Hepburn romanization system, it may be for any of the following reasons:

1. The original pronunciation may be different from that of present day.Many words may be known by their Japanese-base readings rather than Chinese-base readings.

2. Terms would have been recorded as they were heard.

3.The method of transliteration was not completely faithful in using phonetic descriptions, and on occasion would resort to kana notation methods that were in common usage at the time.

Through consideration of these various points in your searches, perhaps you will be able to appreciate the struggles Hepburn went through to express Japanese in the English alphabet!

Designing the search functions of the archive was a daunting task. Because we are always looking to improve the operating system, please let us know of any difficulties you encounter.