kana

[kah-nuh; Japanese kah-nah]
noun
a Japanese syllabic script consisting of 71 symbols and having two written varieties.
Compare hiragana, katakana.


Origin:
1720–30; < Japanese; earlier kanna, kari-na makeshift names (i.e., characters) as opposed to ma-na true characters, i.e., kanji

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Collins
World English Dictionary
kana (ˈkɑːnə)
 
n
hiragana See katakana the Japanese syllabary, which consists of two written varieties
 
[C18: from Japanese, literally: borrowed or provisional letters; compare kanji, which are regarded as real letters]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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FOLDOC
Computing Dictionary

kana definition

Japanese
The two Japanese syllabaries, hiragana and katakana.
(2001-03-18)

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

kana

two parallel modern Japanese syllabaries (katakana and hiragana), each of which independently represents all the sounds of the Japanese language. Although each derives its simple elements from Chinese characters, the two serve different purposes and differ stylistically.

Learn more about kana with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
It showed up perfectly in the preview, but now the kanji and kana appear as question marks.
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