Some More Hiragana Letters

In this lesson, we will learn long vowels and small “っ”.

Long vowels

As you already know, Japanese has 5 vowels. Sometimes they become long vowels, which are doubled in length.

How do we know that?

We add one more vowel. Here is the examples.

あcolumn : “あ” is added.

かあさん (mother)  “か” is lengthen like “ka-a”.

ばあさん (grand mother)

cf. おばさん (aunt) short あvowel


いcolumn : “い” is added.

にいさん (elder brother) “に” is lengthen like “ni-i”.

じいさん (grand father)

cf. おじさん (uncle) short いvowel


うcolumn : “う” is added.

ふう (married couple)

ゆうめいな (famous)


え column : Normally “い” is added but there are some exceptions you have to add “え”

れいぞうこ (refrigerator)

がくせい (student)


ねえさん (elder sister)

ええ (yes)


“お” column: Normally “う” is added but there are some exceptions you have to add “お”

とうさん (father)

もう (younger sister)

とう (younger brother)


おおきい (big)

おおい (many)

とおい (far)


Small “っ”

Small “っ” means a pause. You don’t read it. Hold your breath and be silent.

Here is some examples.


こう (school)

あさ (the day after tomorrow)



Please read aloud these words.

えいが (movie)

おべんとう (lunch box)

きのう (yesterday)

おおきい (big)

いいえ (no)

ふうとう (envelope)

(postage stamp)

ざっし (magazine)

にっき (diary)


Superb! You have finished long vowels and small “っ”!

Hiragana Learning Course contents

8 Reasons why you should learn Hiragana

46 basic Hitagana Letters

More Hiragana Letters – Dakuon and Handakuon

More+ Hiragana Letters – Yōon

Some More Hiragana Letters – Long Vowels and Small “っ” (this post)

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