Japanese Hiragana kyokashotai MO.png
U+3082, も



Stroke order


Etymology 1Edit

Derived in the Heian period from writing the man'yōgana kanji in the cursive sōsho style.


(romaji mo)

  1. The hiragana syllable (mo). Its equivalent in katakana is (mo). It is the thirty-fifth syllable in the gojūon order; its position is (ma-gyō o-dan, row ma, section o).
See alsoEdit

Etymology 2Edit

⟨mo2 → */mə//mo/

From Old Japanese, from Proto-Japonic *mə. Appears in common use in the Kojiki (712 CE), with the only attested distinction between ⟨mo1 and ⟨mo2. Compare Middle Chinese (MC məuX).

Distinct from ⟨mo1 terms such as (⟨kumo1 → kumo, cloud) and (⟨simo1 → shimo, lower, end); pronounced closely to Middle Chinese (MC mɑu, mɑuH).

This distinction was lost in a later ancient Japanese chronicle, the Nihon Shoki (720 CE), and ⟨mo1 and ⟨mo2 were merged to form one syllable mo. See the Man'yōgana and Jōdai Tokushu Kanazukai articles for more detail on ancient spellings.



  1. too, also, as well
    Tanaka-san wa bīru o nondeiru. Sumisu-san mo nondeiru.
    Tanaka is drinking beer. Smith is also drinking.
    Honjitsu mo go-raiten kudasaimashite, arigatō gozaimasu.
    Thank you for visiting our store today as well [as other days].
    Watashi ni mo kureta.
    [She] gave some to me, too.
  2. even
    saru mo ki kara ochiru
    Even experts occasionally make mistakes
    (literally, “Even monkeys fall from trees”)
  3. not even (with negative statements)
    Hako no naka ni wa nani mo nakatta.
    The box was empty.
    (literally, “Inside the box, even something was not there.”)
  4. Inserted between (te) and a negative suffix for emphasis.
    Masaka jiko ni au to wa omotte mo imasen deshita.
    Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined that I would be in an accident.
Usage notesEdit
  • (mo) always replaces (wa), (o) and (ga), but may follow other particles.
See alsoEdit
Derived termsEdit

Etymology 3Edit

The Eastern Old Japanese variant of (-mu),[1] attested in poems of the Man'yōshū (c. 759 CE).



  1. (regional, obsolete) Used to form the conjectural form of verbs, equivalent to modern (-u) / よう (-yō).
    • c. 759, Man'yōshū (book 14, poem 3418), text here
      可美都氣努(かみつけの)佐野田能奈倍能(さのだのなへの)武良奈倍尓(むらなへに)許登波佐太米都(ことはさだめつ)伊麻波伊可尓世(いまはいかにせ)() [Man'yōgana]
      (かみつ)毛野(けの)佐野(さの)()(なへ)群苗(むらなへ)(こと)(さだ)めつ(いま)はいかにせ [Modern spelling]
      Kamitsukeno Sanoda-no-nae no muranae ni koto ni sadametsu ima wa ika ni semo
      (please add an English translation of this example)
    • c. 759, Man'yōshū (book 20, poem 4418), text here
      和我可度乃(わがかどの)可多夜麻都婆伎(かたやまつばき)麻己等奈礼(まことなれ)和我弖布礼奈々(わがてふれなな)都知尓於知(つちにおち)()加毛(かも) [Man'yōgana]
      ()(かど)片山(かたやま)椿(つばき)まこと()()手触(てふ)なな(つち)()かも [Modern spelling]
      waga kado no katayama tsubaki makoto nare waga te furenana tsuchi ni ochimo ka mo
      (please add an English translation of this example)
Usage notesEdit

This word is morphologically an inflectional suffix. It is classified as 助動詞 (jodōshi, auxiliary verb) in traditional Japanese grammar.

Etymology 4Edit

Readings of various kanji.



  1. : This term needs a translation to English. Please help out and add a translation, then remove the text {{rfdef}}.
  2. : mourning
  3. : This term needs a translation to English. Please help out and add a translation, then remove the text {{rfdef}}.
  4. : algae
  5. : This term needs a translation to English. Please help out and add a translation, then remove the text {{rfdef}}.


  1. ^ 2006, 大辞林 (Daijirin), Third Edition (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Sanseidō, →ISBN