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Not to be confused with Hime cut.


File:Senhime Himeji.jpg

Hime (?) is the Japanese word for princess or a lady of higher birth. Although "princess" is usually given as the translation, daughters of a monarch are actually referred to by other terms, e.g. Ōjo (王女?), literally king's daughter, even though Hime can be used to address Ōjyo. The word Hime initially referred to any beautiful female. The antonym of Hime is Shikome (醜女), literally ugly female, though it is archaic and rarely used. Hime may also indicate feminine or simply small when used together with other words, such as Hime-gaki (a low line of hedge).

Hime is commonly seen as part of the Japanese female divinity's name such as Toyotama-hime. The Kanji applied to transliterate Hime are 比売 or 毘売 rather than 姫. The masculine counterpart of Hime is Hiko (彦, 比古 or 毘古,) which is seen as part of the Japanese male gods' name such as Saruta-hiko. Unlike Hime, Hiko is neutral, non-archaic and still commonly applied in modern Japanese male given name, for example Nobuhiko Takada.

Proverb

  • Ichi hime ni taro "First baby, a girl. Second baby, a boy": It originally meant that having a girl first, and a boy second was easier on the mother as she gained experience before nurturing a boy. However, with each household having less children, this is commonly confused as having "one girl and two boys", or three children. This is because "ichi" means "one" in Japanese and "ni" means "two" in Japanese, therefore could be read as, "One girl, two boys."

Usage

While many use the name Hime to address those of a higher or more noble birth, there are a few who use it as a girl's name. Thus some names either incorporate the word Hime or the giver simply will name said girl Hime.

Historical

Sengoku Period

Literature

In popular culture

Script error

Castle

See also

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