Swet Columns

Modern Colloquialisms Japanese-English

Nichibei kogo jiten, ketteiban/Modern Colloquialisms Japanese-English. Third Edition, 1,308 pages, Asahi Press, 2021. ISBN 978-4-255-01214-8 C0582.

Among the tools available to translators, writers, and students of English and Japanese of all sorts, Modern Colloquialisms (MC) has been a standard for more than 40 years. It was published in 1977 under the supervision of scholar and translator Edward G.... more


A Chanoyu Vocabulary: Practical Terms for the Way of Tea Paperback, A5 size, 280 pages. Kyoto: Tankōsha, 2007. ISBN9784473033987

This gem of a dictionary has been around for well over a decade. Currently in its third printing, it remains the one and only comprehensive chanoyu dictionary available, providing concise and accurate “to the T” (pun intended) English definitions of 1,642 terms... more


Japanese Wood and Carpentry: Rustic and Refined. By Mechtild Mertz. Otsu, Shiga Prefecture: Kaiseisha Press, 2020. ¥4,800.

By Judith Clancy

Japan’s remarkable history of wooden structures ranges from massive temples to delicate cabinetry. All their parts, from supporting pillars to decorative tokonoma posts are made from carefully selected wood species. Translators and editors frequently encounter the diverse terminology... more