E (kana)

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e
transliteration e
hiragana origin
katakana origin
spelling kana 英語のエ
(Eigo no "e")

In Japanese writing, the kana (hiragana) and (katakana) (romanised e) occupy the fourth place, between and , in the modern Gojūon (五十音) system of collating kana. In the Iroha, they occupy the 34th, between and . In the table at right (ordered by columns, from right to left), え lies in the first column (あ行, "column A") and the fourth row (え段, "row E"). Both represent [e].

Form Rōmaji Hiragana Katakana
Normal a/i/u/e/o
(あ行 a-gyō)
e
ei
ee
ē
えい, えぃ
ええ, えぇ
えー
エイ, エィ
エエ, エェ
エー

Derivation[edit]

え and エ originate, via man'yōgana, from the kanji and , respectively.

The archaic kana (we), as well as many non-initial occurrences of the character (he), have entered the modern Japanese language as え. The directional particle へ is today pronounced "e", though not written as え. Compare this to (ha) and (wo), which are pronounced "wa" and "o" when used as grammatical particles.

Variant forms[edit]

Scaled-down versions of the kana (ぇ, ェ) are used to express morae foreign to the Japanese language, such as ヴェ (ve). In several Okinawan writing systems, a small ぇ is also combined with the kana く (ku) and ふ (fu or hu) to form the digraphs くぇ kwe and ふぇ hwe.

Transliteration[edit]

In the Hepburn, Kunrei-shiki and Nihon-shiki systems of romanization, both え and エ are transliterated as "e". In the Polivanov system of cyrillization, the kana are transliterated as "э".

Stroke order[edit]

え-bw.png

The hiragana え is made with two strokes:

  1. At the top, a short diagonal stroke proceeding downward and to the right.
  2. At the bottom, a stroke composed of a horizontal line, a diagonal proceeding downward and to the left, and a rightward stroke resembling a tilde (~).
エ-bw.png

The katakana エ is made with three strokes:

  1. At the top, a horizontal stroke from left to right.
  2. A downward vertical stroke starting in the center of the first stroke.
  3. At the bottom, a horizontal stroke parallel to the first stroke, and touching the second. This stroke is usually slightly longer than the first.

This is also the way to make the English letter "I" (although the correct upper case form does not look like the lower case English letter "l")

Other communicative representations[edit]

Character
Unicode name HIRAGANA LETTER E KATAKANA LETTER E HALFWIDTH KATAKANA LETTER E
Encodings decimal hex decimal hex decimal hex
Unicode 12360 U+3048 12456 U+30A8 65396 U+FF74
UTF-8 227 129 136 E3 81 88 227 130 168 E3 82 A8 239 189 180 EF BD B4
Numeric character reference え え エ エ エ エ
Shift JIS 130 166 82 A6 131 71 83 47 180 B4
Character
Unicode name HIRAGANA LETTER SMALL E KATAKANA LETTER SMALL E HALFWIDTH KATAKANA LETTER SMALL E
Encodings decimal hex decimal hex decimal hex
Unicode 12359 U+3047 12455 U+30A7 65386 U+FF6A
UTF-8 227 129 135 E3 81 87 227 130 167 E3 82 A7 239 189 170 EF BD AA
Numeric character reference ぇ ぇ ェ ェ ェ ェ
Shift JIS 130 165 82 A5 131 70 83 46 170 AA
Character 𛀀 𛀁
Unicode name KATAKANA LETTER ARCHAIC E HIRAGANA LETTER ARCHAIC YE
Encodings decimal hex decimal hex
Unicode 110592 U+1B000 110593 U+1B001
UTF-8 240 155 128 128 F0 9B 80 80 240 155 128 129 F0 9B 80 81
UTF-16 55340 56320 D82C DC00 55340 56321 D82C DC01
Numeric character reference 𛀀 𛀀 𛀁 𛀁
  • Braille
え / エ in Japanese Braille
え / エ
e
えい / エー
ē/ei
⠋ (braille pattern dots-124) ⠋ (braille pattern dots-124) ⠒ (braille pattern dots-25)

Japanese Semaphore Basic Stroke 1.svg Japanese Semaphore Reversed Basic Stroke 2.svg Japanese Semaphore Basic Stroke 1.svg