Measured out in

All I have today is an off-color old haiku:

He o hitte/ okashiku mo nai/ hitori mono
Farting isn't even funny: single life

Ain't it the truth. And here is some bonus information that I hope will protect my academic dignity.

Hitte is the te-form of hiru (放る). He o hitte is literally something like "letting out a fart" or "expelling a fart". Today, the verb koku (放く) is generally preferred; etymologically it seems to mean something like "squeeze out" or "wring out".

In other words, between the Edo and the modern period, Japan's vocabulary got more anal too.

Popularity factor: 6

Leonardo Boiko:

I didn't know 独り (as opposed to 一人). Made more sense after I looked it up.


Interestingly (or maybe not), to fart is "放屁“ in Chinese.


Leonardo: Yeah, it's one of those kanji-only distinctions that makes Japanese so great.

R: Is that a two-syllable word, or a two-word phrase (to 放 a 屁)?


Isn't the Chinese something like <i>fang pi</i> (not sure of the tones), at least etymologically Verb + Noun?

Mark S.:

Is that a two-syllable word
Yes, fangpi (fàngpì/fang4pi4). It's a verb. But it also gets used a lot as an impolite but not obscene term to express one's belief that what someone else has said is nonsense.

or a two-word phrase (to 放 a 屁)?
I've heard people say among close friends something like, "Duibuqi, wo qu fang [yi] ge pi." This is for when someone might step aside for a moment to fart away from one's friends and want to explain / joke about this.

But the closed form as one word is much more common.



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