Concept

Onkochishinsho

Summary
The Onkochishinsho was the first Japanese dictionary to collate words in the now standard gojūon order. This Muromachi Period dictionary's title uses a Classical Chinese four-character idiom from the Lunyu: "The Master said, "If a man keeps cherishing his old knowledge, so as continually to be acquiring new, he may be a teacher of others." (tr. Legge). The preface to the Onkochishinsho is dated 1484 (Bunmei era), and gives the compiler's name as Ōtomo Hirokimi (大伴広公). It notes this little-known lexicographer was a Shajinshi (社神司 "Earth God Official") in Shiragi (新羅 "ancient Korean kingdom of Silla"). Kaneko reads this fourth character as an honorific (公 "duke; lord") and identifies him as Ōtomo Taihiro 大伴泰広. When Ōtomo chose to collate the Onkochishinsho in the 10 by 5 grid gojūon "fifty sounds" order (a-i-u-e-o), he went against centuries of Japanese dictionary tradition using the poetic iroha order (i-ro-ha-ni-ho). For example, the circa 1469 CE Setsuyōshū predecessor collates wor
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