いおりてん【庵点】
The above cartoon excerpt includes two 庵点 to indicate that the girl is singing the words.
(Source: 『りぼんマスコットコミックス 映画原作特別書き下ろし ちびまる子ちゃん ―わたしの好きな歌―』さくらももこ著, 集英社, 1993, p. 67.)

■ 庵点 is the name of a symbol that looks like or . In modern Japanese texts, the symbol indicates that the following words are taken from a song or that the person saying the words is singing. In older texts, it was used to highlight personal names or other elements in poems and songs.

□ An 庵(いおり) is a small cottage, and the name 庵点 comes from the symbol's resemblance to the roof of such a cottage.

An informal survey of a number of educated Japanese, including several who work or have worked in the publishing industry, found none who knew the word 庵点, although all knew what the symbol meant. The word 庵点 appears in large Japanese-Japanese dictionaries; the author of this entry learned the word from 大辞林(だいじりん). An alternative name for the 庵点 is 歌記号(うたきごう). Two other names are said to be 歌詞符号(かしふごう) and 唄符号 (うたふごう), though neither term gets a hit at Google in February 2002 (Source: 『写真植字のための組版ルールブック』(五版,昭和58年,全日本印刷工業組合連合会・日本軽印刷工業会・日本写真製版工業組合連合会).

The character has been added or is scheduled to be added to the major character standards. It is numbered 1-3-28 in JIS X 0213:2000, and it is one of the characters proposed for inclusion in Unicode 3.2. The provisionally allocated Unicode number and name are 303D "PART ALTERNATION MARK," categorized as "other CJK punctuation" and described as "marks the start of a song part in Japanese." At present, however, the symbol cannot be typed with most word processing software, and often a musical note such as ♪, called an 音符(おんぷ), is used instead.


This entry was created by Tom Gally, with additional contributions by Malcolm James and 惣坊均.


Created 2001-02-24. 歌詞符号 and 唄符号 added by 惣坊均 2002-02-02 (information provided 2001-02-24).


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