くん

くん Japanese Grammar Lesson

Grammar Type: Suffix

Essential Meaning: Suffix affixed to the first or last name of someone of an equal or lower social status

Construction: 

  • First Name + くん
    • E.g. ジョンくん [John-kun]
  • Last Name + くん
    • E.g. 黒木くろぎくん [Kurogi-kun]

Notes:

  • In Japanese, it’s very common to affix suffixes to names (e.g. くん, ちゃん, さん, 先生せんせい) as terms of endearment, respect, or humility.
  • くん is generally attached to the first or last name of someone of an equal or lower status than the speaker. For example, a teacher might address a student named 黒木くろぎ 太郎 たろう as 太郎 たろうくん or 黒木くろぎくん. 太郎 たろう‘s friends would likely call him 太郎 たろうくん as well.
  • くん is generally used to refer to young boys, ちゃん is used to refer to young girls, and さん / さま is used to refer to anyone in a humble or respectful way. However, these are general principles and are often broken for a variety of reasons. For example, a large adult man may refer to himself with ちゃん in a humorous, ironic manner.

Example Sentences:

山田やまだくん [Mr. Yamada]

もしもし。一郎いちろうくんいますか。[Hello. Is Ichiro there?]

田口たぐちくんが来年らいねん結婚けっこんするそうだ。[I heard that Mr. Taguchi is getting married next year.]

田口たぐち一郎いちろうくん、昇進しょうしんおめでとう。[Ichiro Taguchi, congratulations on your promotion!]

WILD Examples:

In this song, the hippo is referred to as カバくん [Mr. Hippo] as a casual term of endearment.
Listen to this line at 0:24: ぐるぐるぐるぐるたこくん [Spin, spin, spin, spin, Mr. Takoyaki!]

***YouTube videos may be region-locked depending on your country of origin. If you experience issues, please try using a VPN set to a United States IP address.***