Japanese Sound effects in Manga and what they mean

a = general interjection: oh, uh, ah

a! = exclamation of surprise, alarm, amazement, relief, frustration, fury: Oh! Ack! Agh! Ah! Argh! Also inarticulate sound of pain or passion: Ah! Oh!

aaaa! = same as above, but more so

aa = yes, okay, sure

aa(aaa)n = opening the mouth wide, as in "Say ah!" Used when feeding or being fed by someone.

aan, an = cry of passion (see a!)

acha = remorse

agi agi = bite bite, gnaw, sink your cute little fangs into (see also agu agu, kaji)

agu agu = bite bite (see also agi agi, kaji)

ahaha = laughter (see also ha ha ha for masculine laughter, and ho ho ho for refined feminine laughter)

arayotto, hoisatto = K-san: "These are used when one is doing some physical task and finishing it easily. One uses either or both of them at a time."

ba = sudden impact. English equivalents would be: bam, bang, crash, ka-boom, thump, thud, wham, whomp, etc. (See also bagu, baki, ban, bashi, bata, batan, bokan, bun, dan, doka, don, doshin, dote, ga, ka, kon, paka, pan, pashi, patan, poka, pon, to, ton, among others.)

bachi = crackle (see also bari, biri)

bagu = impact

baki = impact (one of the most common impact sounds) or other very loud sound

ban = bang! bam!

ban = sometimes added to a scene for dramatic effect, to show that something astonishing or important has happened (see also don)

bara bara = rattle rattle (see also chara chara, gara gara)

bari bari = crunch, as in eating. K-san: "Pori pori is the quietest crunching. Pori pori is for cookies; bari bari is for chips. Kori kori is for broccoli and asparagus." (see also kori, pari, pori)

bari bari = scratch scratch (see also giri giri, kiri kiri)

bari bari = rip rip (see also biri biri)

bari bari = crackle, crackle? Anyway, energy or electricity, just like biri biri. Pari pari is a quieter crackle, just as pori is a quieter crunch than bari. (see also bachi)

basa = rustling, e.g. cloth sliding, paper moving (see also pasa)

bashan = medium splash (see also zabun for a very big splash)

bashi, bashito = impact (see also nashi, pashi)

bata, batan = impact, often used for falling down

batan = door slamming (see also patan)

batchiri = precise, proper, accurate

becho = dropping something. K-san says it means dropping something sticky (and see beto beto), but we've seen it used for Yuusuke dropping Kuwabara. Maybe Kuwabara was sticky at the moment.

bee, bee da = rudeness, what you say when you stick out your tongue and pull down your eyelid at someone. From 'Bero bero akkan-bee (or akanbei).' Like the mocking Western 'nya nya!'

bero = peeling back

bero bero = licking over and over, stronger than pero

betari = people or objects that stick together (physically or metaphorically)

beto beto = sticky, gummy

bi, biiii = highpitched sound: shriek, wail (see also kiiii)

bicha bicha = small splash (see also bashan for medium splash, zabun for big splash)

bichi bichi = flopping, smacking

biku, bikun, bikkun = surprise (see also piku)

biri = electricity, energy

biri biri = tearing, as in ripping cloth, opening a potato chip bag (see also bari, piri)

biron = tongue hanging out

bishi = whip, slap, smack, depending on the degree of power

bo = flame, fire (see also gooo, guooo, po). W-san: "'Bo' is like the 'whoosh' of a gas range turned on."

bo = sluggish and exhausted (see also doyon)

bochan = kerplunk (see also pochan)

bochi bochi = something happening steadily, as in water dripping

bokan = sudden impact

boketto = gazing vacantly

boko = boiling, bubbling. Can also be any 'pop' or bursting sound. (see also buku)

bon = sound of magical transformation or appearance, often seen with a puff of smoke (see also pon/pom, dororonpa)

bosa bosa = unkempt, also sitting around lazily

boso boso = muttering, speaking in a hushed, unclear voice. M.J. says of boso, busu, and musu: "All of them what muttered sulky Japanese sounds like--'bananas bananas' said through the nose, so to speak; because you don't complain out loud." (see also busu, guzu, gyaa, musu)

bota = dripping, possibly something thick dripping, like blood. Compare to pi, picha, po, pota. (see also dara dara for thick liquid dripping)

boto boto, bote = falling

botsu = whoosh

buchi = snap. Can be used metaphorically, such as when Hiei snaps under the pressure of learning he's a father.

buchi buchi = ripping, tearing

buchu = kiss (see also chu, nchu, uchu)

buku, bukubuku = swelling, something swollen (see also puku)

buku, bukubuku = boiling, bubbles

bui = 'V' for victory. Sound of fingers making the V-sign.

bunchchacha = music. Yes, really. Bun is a slow beat and cha cha quick beats. (see also runtata)

bun, buun = swish

buun = buzz, whir, as of an insect

buran = hanging, dangling

burororo = sound of a loud motor, as of an automobile (see also oooo)

Buru = a head being shaken violently in the negative

busu busu = the sound of something smoldering or smoking. Used for the embers after Hiei's fire attacks. (see also pusu pusu)

busu, busu busu, usuto, butsu = muttered complaining (see boso, guzu, gyaa, musu)

buwa = explosion

buyo buyo = squishy and swollen, waterlogged

bwahaha = evil laugh, same as fwahaha, gahaha, gwahaha

byu = quick movement, such as the leaps Hiei makes (see also hyu, gyu, pyu)

chapon, chapu = plunk (water sound) (see also shapu)

chara chara = rattle, clatter, jingle (see also bara bara, gara gara)

chi, ch' = Various translators: "I think of it as a tongue-clicking noise." "It means 'shit.'" "I think it's better translated as 'damn' since it's about the equivalent in vulgarity." "Probably a--mm, vocal referent, would you call it?--to chikushou, another of the 'oh shit' words." You can see why we decided to leave it as ch'. ^_^

chichichi = how you call a cat

chi chi = high shrill noise

chira, chirari, chiron = quick sideways glance

chiri chiri = curly, frizzy

chiri chiri = tingle of heat, shiver of cold (see also zoku for shiver)

chirin = chime

chiyahoya = fuss over, butter up

choki choki = cutting, as with knives or scissors

chokon = small and quiet

chu = kiss (see also nchu, uchu)

chu = suck (as through a straw)

chun chun = chirp chirp (see also pii pii for peep peep)

da da da, daaaaaaaa = running away (see also do do do, ta, ta ta ta)

dan = bang, boom, sudden impact

dara dara = continuous dripping of thick liquid, like blood, sweat, saliva drool (see also jo, jururu, zururu)

dere dere = sloppy, loose. Also to go goofy over someone, to fawn.

do = big impact

do = heartbeat, the loudest kind! (see also doki doki, dokun, tokun)

do do do do = footsteps, especially heavy footsteps, running (see also da)

do do do do = quick punches

Dobi = missed kick

doka = impact

doki doki = heartbeat (see also dokun, tokun)

dokun = harder heartbeat (see also doki, tokun)

don = BIG impact

don = sometimes added to a scene for dramatic effect, to show that something astonishing or important has happened (see also ban)

dondon = continuous action

dopyu = spurting (as in blood) K-san: "The 'pyu' is the spurting (quick action, just like 'pyu' on its own), and the 'do' emphasizes it, just as in 'dosu.'"

doron, dororonpa = the sound of magical transformation (see also bon, pon, pom)

dorya = what to yell as you attack; a fighting taunt or war cry. (see also ora, orya, sorya, uraa)

dosa = thud of something heavy (often a person or body) hitting the floor

doshin = impact

Dosshu = a cut through bone

dosu = spurting. K-san: "The 'su' is the spurting, and the 'do' emphasizes it, just as in 'dopyu.'"

dotabata = running around wildly, as in panic or confusion (compare to jitabata for flailing)

dote = impact, falling. W-san: "This sound is often used in reference to the frequent, usually comical falls toddler are always taking. With adults it means a careless, slapstick fall."

doyon = sluggish and exhausted, depressed (see also bo)

e! e? = what! huh? We usually translate this as 'eh?' although the Japanese 'e?' is less colloquial and informal than the Western 'eh?'

e, eeee = cry, wail (see also hu-e, miiii)

ee = yes, okay, sure

eeto = (said by a character) um, er, uh. What you say while you're thinking of what to say.

ehen = we've had this translated as both 'ahem!' and 'haha!'

ei = shriek

fua, fuwa, fa = yawn

fu, fua (hu hua) = sigh, blowing breath out (as in blowing out a candle)

fu fu fu (hu hu hu) = a strange laugh. M.J.: "The evil chuckle in the back of the throat." (see also ku ku ku, pu pu pu)

fuki fuki = wiping

fumi = step, stomp

fumu (humu) = hmmph, hmm, uh-huh (see also umu)

funka funka (hunka hunka) = sniff sniff, inhale (see also nku, kunka)

fura = yawn (see also fua)

fura = drift

fura = dizziness (see also kura)

fura, fura fura = wobble, totter

fura, furi, furu = tremble, quiver (see also puru)

fusa = abundant, soft hair. (Or, in these stories, somebody touching it.)

fuwa, fuwato = gentle movement, lifting or floating

fuwari, funwara = even gentler, calmer movement than fuwato

fwahaha = evil laugh, same as bwahaha, gahaha, gwahaha

ga = yet another impact word

gaba = grab (see also gashi, gu, gui, gya, gyu, ku, kyu)

gaba gaba = gurgling

gaba gaba = too big (as of clothes)

gacha, gachari = the click of something opening, such as a latch, a door, or even a belt (see also kacha)

gahaha = evil laugh, same as bwahaha, fwahaha, gwahaha

gakin = clash

gaku = shaking, wobbling (see also kaku, kakun)

gakun, gakunto, gakuri = to collapse, fall

gapu = big bite, chomp (see also paku)

gan = revelation, usually horrible

GAAA-N = BIG revelation, always horrible

gangan = strong or violent action

gara gara, garan = clatter, rattle (see also bara bara, chara chara)

gasa, goso = rustle, stealthy movement

gashan = crash, impact (see also gashin, gochin)

gashi = grab (see also gaba, gyu)

gashin = crash, impact (see also gashan, gochin)

gasshiri = solid

gata, gatan = to reel in shock from a revelation

gata, gatan = to fall or collapse

gatsu gatsu/gatu gatu = gobble food (see also hau hau, paku)

gaya = excited crowd sound

gebo = throwing up

gefu = belch, burp

geho = cough (see also goho, kehen, kon, koho)

gennari = exhausted

geshi geshi = not sure about this. At times it seems to be a wiping sound like goshi ; at others either a squashing or rustling sound. Maybe a general cloth sound?

gi gi, giiee = sounds Kurama's plants (and other evil plants) make. (for other menacing sounds see go go go and uzo uzo)

giku, gikuri = surprise (see also biku, piku)

gin = glare, stare at (see also giro)

gira = twinkle, shine, glint (see also kira, kiran)

giri giri = scratching, grinding, more vigorous than kiri (see also bari bari)

giri giri = at the limit, to have no time or space to spare

giro = glare, stare at (see also gin)

gishi = creaking (see also kishi)

Gitai-go = not a sound effect, but the Japanese word for onomatopoeia, or sound effects.

go go go go = general menace, a threatening atmosphere. (for other menacing sounds, see gi gi and uzo uzo)

gochin = impact. W-san: "Another comical collision sound." (see also gashan, gashin)

gofu = cough

goho, gohon = a deep, wet cough, also vomiting up water (see also geho, gofu, kehen, kon, koho)

goku, gokun = gulp, swallow (see also kokun)

goooo = a roar. Can be a fire sound, often used for Hiei's fire attacks (see also bo, guooo, po)

goro goro = purr purr

goro, goron = rolling over. It's supposed to be something heavy rolling over, but we've seen it used for tiny little Hiei rolling. Maybe it means he's rolling heavily.

goshi = scrubbing, rubbing, wiping (see also koshi)

goso = rummage, rustle

goun = the sound of a washing machine. Really. At least, we've seen it used for that specifically by two different djka. The sound of a dryer, however, is guon (see the difference?)

gowa gowa = stiff, rigid
gu = grabbing, pulling (see also gaba, gui, gyu)

gu = what you sound like when you're sleeping (see also supigu, ku, suka, suya, gussuri.) Gu and ku are similar to zzzzz. Supigu is peaceful sleep. K-san says "it's sort of a whistling sound."

gu = stomach growling (see also ku, kyururu)

gucha = smashing, crushing (see also gusha)

guchi guchi = wet sound? twisting sound? We're not sure.

gui = grab (see also gaba, gu, gyu)

gui = gulp

gunya = sudden mental realization

guon = the sound of a dryer. For the sound of a washing machine, see goun

guooo = a roar. Can be a fire sound, often used for Hiei's fire attacks (Cf. bo, goooo, po)

gura = stagger, move shakily (see also zuru)

guri = to give noogies

gusha = squeeze, grab, crush (see also gucha)

gussuri = deep sleep (see also gu, ku, suka, supigu, suya)

gutta, guttari = droopy, wilted, limp. Used to describe people or plants. (see also kuta)

gutto, guutto = extreme concentration, also strong emotion

guzu = whine, grumble (see also boso, busu, gyaa)

gwahaha = evil laugh, same as bwahaha, fwahaha, gahaha

gya = shriek (see also kya)

gya = grab (see also gaba, gyu)

gyaa gyaa = whine, grumble (see also boso, busu, guzu)

gyo = shock

gyu, kyu = grab, squeeze, twist (see also gaba, gya)

gyuu, gyuun = fast motion (see also byu, hyu, pyu)

ha! = sound of surprise or realization. Can mean catching breath in shock or panic.

ha, haa haa = panting, exhalation

ha ha ha = laughter (masculine laughter, as opposed to ho ho ho, which is refined feminine laughter) (see also ahaha)

hakkiri = clear, unambiguous

hamu = bite, chew, glomp, as in Lively Little Hiei-chan glomping onto a spoon

hara hara = to fall gently, like a flower petal....

hata = soft, quiet landing noise. (for a louder rattle see gata)

hau hau = gobbling (see also gatsu, paku)

he he he = heh heh heh (laugh)

hena hena = worn out, exhausted. (see also heto heto)

henshin = transformation (as from Tsukino Usagi to Sailor Moon). We've seen it used at least once as a sound effect.

hero hero = spineless, limp, or pliable (see also mero, pura, puran)

heta = collapsing, sitting down in despair or exhaustion

heto heto = worn out, exhausted. (see also hena hena)

hiee = exclamation: eek, yikes

hiii, hiiie = shriek

hihiin = high-pitched whinny, as of a horse

hiku, hiku hiku = shaking, as with anger or sobs (compare to shiku)

hiku = hiccup

hiri hiri = continuous pain or irritation

hiso hiso = whisper whisper

hiya hiya = fear, worry

hn = huh, hrumph, humph. Traditional spelling of Hiei's traditional interjection. When anybody else says it, we've rendered it huh or humph..

hoisatto, arayotto = K-san: "These are used when one is doing some physical task and finishing it easily. One uses either or both of them at a time."

ho ho ho = laughter, specifically, refined feminine laughter. (see also ahahaha, ha ha ha for masculine laughter)

hoka hoka = warmth, heat (internal or external)

honobono = peaceful, harmonious, tranquil

hooo = wind

hote hote = toddle toddle (see also tote)

hu, hua (fu, fua) = sigh

hu hu hu = (or fu fu fu) a strange laugh

hu-e = cry, wail (see also e, miiii)

hun = huh, hrumph, humph (see hn)

hunka hunka (funka funka) = sniff sniff

hyoi = popping up suddenly, quick movement such as reaching

hyoko = popping up suddenly

hyu, hyun = quick movement, such as the leaps Hiei makes, or Kurama's whip moving (see also byu, gyu, pyu)

hyuuuuu = cold wind, lonely wind

icha icha, ichakura ichakura = displaying affection in public. K-san: "touching and carrying on." Acting spoony. ^_-

ira ira = fume fume. It's also been suggested that this is the sound of clenched or grinding teeth.

iso iso = moving blithely, happily

ja, jaaaa = water/liquid flowing or rushing, or any other hissing sound (see also jo, ju, zu)

ja ja ja = hiss hiss hiss (such as the sound of Kurama frying something)

jabon = big splash (see also shapu, zabu, and bashan, picha, pisha for smaller splashes)

jaki = glint of something sharp

jan, jan jan = tada!

jiiiiii, jiiiin, jiiiito, jiiiton = the sound of staring, of silence, or of remaining frozen/ motionless. Often used in djs to indicate that a character is moved beyond words, stunned beyond words, or just generally beyond words. (see also shiiiin) As a word, jitto emphasizes being motionless, jiitto emphasizes the duration of being still.

jiku jiku = numbness

jiro, jiro-jiro-to = a hard look. 'Jiro-jiro-to' means 'in a fixed, staring manner.'

jiri, jiri jiri = something scraping on the ground. Sometimes used for a charater inching forward or backward

jitabata = flail one's arms and legs (or one's tail, in the case of 'The Mermaid Princess' ) (compare to dotabata for running around in confusion)

jiwa = tears welling up

jiwa jiwa = slowly but steadily

jo, joro joro = water/liquid flowing or pouring (see also dara dara, jururu, zururu)

jururu = drool (see also dara dara, jo, zururu)

ka(a) = light (see also pa, po)

ka, kan = heels going click, footsteps

kaa = face turning red, blushing (see also po)

kacha = the click of something opening, such as a latch, a door, or even a belt (see also gacha)

kaji = bite, gnaw, sink your little fangs into (see also agi, agu, kari)

kaku = scratching, running a hand through hair, paddling a hand in water

kaku, kakun = shaking, wobbling, losing balance (see also gaku)

kapan = rattle, open (compare to batan, patan for closing)

kara = empty

karakara = bone dry

karan = rattle, open

kari kari = something scratching on something else, e.g., a pen on paper, somebody's little fangs on your head

kasa, kase = rustle. Commonly used for a quiet footstep in the grass, also can be paper, cloth, or other material rustling.

katsu katsu = clomp clomp

kehen = cough (see also geho, gofu, goho, kon, koho)

kerori = unaffected, casual, unimpressed

ki = glare, the glint of a dagger eye

kii = squeak, high-pitched sound, as in a door squeaking

kiiiii! = long high-pitched sound: brakes squealing, hysterical scream (see also biiii for shrieking)

kichi kichi = full, jam-packed

kichin, kichinto = meticulously, carefully

kin kon, kan kon, kin koun (and other variations) = ding dong, as of a school bell (see also pin pon)

kippari = flatly, definitely, clearly (to say something this way)

kira, kiran, kirari = twinkle, shine, glint (see also gira)

kiri kiri = scratching or scraping, less vigorous than giri

kiri kiri = business, haste

kishi = creaking (see also gishi)

kochoku = frozen, paralyzed

koho = cough (see also goho, kehen, kon)

koi = come on (as a fighting phrase)

koi koi = come, come, beckoning

kokun = swallow (see also goku, gokun)

kokuri, kokkun = nod

kon = quiet impact, such as knocking at a door

kon = soft cough (see also goho, kehen, koho)

kopo = pouring

kori = crunch, as in eating. K-san: "Pori pori is the quietest crunching. Pori pori is for cookies; bari bari is for chips. Kori kori is for broccoli and asparagus." (see also bari, pari, pori)

kori kori = scraping

koro, koron = dropping something, something rolling or tumbling (see also poro)

koshi koshi = rubbing, wiping (see also goshi, geshi)

koso, kossori = sneaky, doing something stealthily

koto, kotsun = little clink, like the sound of a glass being put down or a tear gem falling.

kotsu kotsu = slowly but surely

ku = sleeping (see also gu, supigu, suka, suya)

ku, ku ku, ku ku ku = giggle in the throat

ku, kukyururu, kyururu = stomach rumbling, tummy growling

kudo kudo = repetitive

kuha = yawn (see also fua, fa)

kukaa = sleepy breathing

kukuri = distinct, clear

kun kun = smelling

kune kune = wiggling like a snake (see also nyoro nyoro)

kunka kunka = sniff sniff (as of smelling). (see also funka, hunka, nku)

kura = dizziness (see also fura)

kurin = curling (as in the movement of tentacles or an unhappy dog's tail)

kuru = turning

kusha, kushu, kushun = sneeze: ker-choo!

kusu = little laugh

kuta, kutari = droopy, wilted, limp. Used to describe people or plants. (see also guttari)

kya = shriek (see also gya)

kyapi kyapi = happy noisy girlish chattering

kyoro kyoro = looking this way and that, searching for something with the eyes

kyu, gyu = grab

kyururu, ku, kukyururu = stomach rumbling, tummy growling


meki meki = quick progress

mero mero = limp, floppy (see also hero, pura, puran)

meso meso = whimper, sniffle

miii = cry, wail (see also e, hu-e)

Miin miin = The sound of cicadas in the summer

mishi mishi = creak creak

moji moji = shyness

moku = eating, munching (see also mugu)

momi = groping (this one comes up a lot, sadly)

mu, musu, mumuu, muun = grimace, anger, sulkiness. It's been suggested that the sound of 'mu' is a sort of closed-mouth grunt--perhaps similar to the sound of disapproval Marge Simpson makes?

mugu, muku = eating, munching with closed mouth (see also moku)

muka muka = sick, nauseated

muku = getting up, sitting up

munyu = The sound of groping--usually a girl's chest

mura mura = sexual arousal

n? = Hm? Huh?

n = a grunt, as of surprise, effort, sleepiness, pain, or passion. We've had translators render the actual sound in different ways: mm, n, nh, ngh, ng, ung, unh. Lately we've been going with nh or ng.

nade nade = stroke stroke, pet pet

nashi = smack (see also bashi, pashi)

nchu = kiss (see also buchu, chu, uchu)

ni, niko, nikori = smile, grin (see also nipa, nita)

nipa(a) = brilliant smile, grin (see also niko, nita)

nisho = effort (see also nsho, nshotto, yoisho)

nita = sinister smile (see also niko, nipa)

niyari, nyari = leer

nku = sniff sniff, inhale (see also funka, hunka, kunka)

nnuuu = see nuuu

noro noro = slowness

nsho, nshotto = effort (see also nisho, unsho, yoisho)

nukenuke, nukenuketo = nonchalantly (to speak or act that way)

nuru, nuru nuru, nurun = greasing, soaping, making slippery

nuuuu = menace. W-san: "'Nuu' is often used when something unknown, mysterious, or big appears out of nowhere."

nyari, niyari = leer

nyoro nyoro = W-san: "Something long and thin like a snake moving along with a wriggling motion." (see also kune kune)

oi = hey!

oisho, yoisho, nsho, nshotto, nisho = effort, strain: Oof! Umph!

oo! = approving exclamation: Oh! Whoa!

oooo = wind howling

oooo = menacing roar, animal or mechanical (such as the roar of an engine) (see also buroro)

ora ora = what you say when you punch somebody repeatedly. A fighting taunt or war cry; we've had it loosely translated as "Take that!" "Try this!" (see also dorya, orya, sorya, uraa)

oro oro = shock, surprise, befuddlement, confusion. (You don't usually say it, though, unlike Kenshin.)

orya = what to yell as you attack; a fighting taunt or war cry. (see also dorya, ora, sorya, uraa)

osoru osoru = timidly

pa(a) = light, shining (see also ka, po)

pachi = K-san: "A sharp, snappy sound." Can be click, crackle, clap, crack, etc. We've seen it used for opening eyes, bursting veins, clapping, and indeterminate ominous things happening.

paka = opening, separating. W-san: "A sound describing something opening in half. Like when Peachboy came out of his giant peach, the sound the peach made was 'paka.'"

paka = snap

paku = closing mouth on food, chomp (see also gapu)

paku paku = opening and closing mouth, eating, gobbling. This is where Pac-man came from! (see also hau, gatsu)

pan = sudden impact

pan pan = pat, pat or smack, smack, as of dusting hands (or oneself) off

pari = crunch, as in eating (see also bari, kori, pori)
pari pari = crackle, as of energy or electricity. Quieter than bari bari.

parin = crash, clash

pasa = rustling, e.g. cloth sliding, paper moving

pasha = splashing, as with the hand (see also pisha) For a big splash, see zabun.

pashi = impact: smack! click! (see also bashi, nashi)

pata pata = flap flap

patata = spatter spatter

patan = door slamming (see also batan)

pechanko, peshanko = flattened, crushed

peko = bow

peko peko = bow over and over (grovel)

pero, pero pero = licking (see also bero)

peron = rolling up or down, or flipping

petan, petanto = smooth, flat. Also, to flop down on the floor.

pi = beep, peep, any other short high-pitched sound

pi, picha, pichon = drip (see also po, pochan, pota)

pichi = flap, bounce, snap (see also bichi)

piiii = shrill sound, beeper, telephone, whistle

piii piii = chirp chirp

piku, pikuri = blink, noticing something. May be from piku = twitch = pricking up the ears.

piku = twitch

pin pon = ding dong, bell (see also kin kon)

piri = tearing, as in ripping cloth, opening a potato chip bag ) see also biri

piri piri = sharp sensation, as of pain, electricity, spiciness. Can be the sharpness or electricity of a glare.

pisha = splashing, as with the hand (see also pasha) For a big splash, see zabun.

pishi = crack (as of a whip), smack (see also bishi)

pita = stopping

pito = gentle touch

piyo = peep

po, pochan, pota = drip, plunk. Pochan = kerplunk! (see also pi, picha, pichon, pochi)

po = flame, light. Can also be blushing. For other fire sounds see bo, gooo, guooo. Other light sounds include paa, kaa.

Po = Po's nom de plume. Has nothing to do with sound effects, and everything to do with Tinky Winky, Dipsy, and Laa Laa.

pochi pochi = something happening steadily, as in water dripping

poi = throwing or tossing something

poka = impact

poka poka = warmth of the sun

pon = impact, fairly quiet

pon, pom = sound of magical transformation or appearance, often seen with a puff of smoke (see also bon, dororonpa)

pootto = dazed, obsessed

pori pori = eating, crunching, softer than 'bari bari.' K-san: "Pori pori is the quietest crunching. Pori pori is for cookies; bari bari is for chips. Kori kori is for broccoli and asparagus." (see also bari, kori, pari)

poro, poto = dropping something, something rolling (see also koro, koron)

potsun = aloneness, separation

puchi puchi = pop pop, crackle crackle

puku, pukupuku = swelling, something swollen (see also buku)

pun pun = bad-smelling

pu pu pu, upupupu = yet another strange laugh (see also fu fu fu)

pura pura, puran = limp, floppy (see also hero, mero)

puri puri = anger (see also puuu)

puru = shake, quiver (see also puri, furu)

pusu = puncturing, penetrating

pusu pusu = the sound of something smoldering or smoking (see also busu busu)

puu = puff

puuuu = anger (see also puri puri)

puutto = snort, honk, toot (from a horn or any bodily orifice ^_^)

pyu = fast motion (see also byu, gyu, hyu)


runtata = music. In this case, used for something Hiei-chan is humming. Run is a slow beat and tata quick beats. (see also bunchacha)

sa, saa = hissing, rain, water running (softer sound than zaa, which can also be rain)

sa, saaaa = rustling, wind

sa, sasa = quick motion

sa, saku = step

sara sara = smooth, light, dry

sasu sasu = rubbing

sawa, sawayaka = cool, refreshing, something that makes you feel refreshed (see also suka)

sesseto = working steadily

shaaa = something slicing through air: whishhh!

shaka shaka = scrape scrape

shapu shapu = splash (see also zabun)

shiiin = the sound of staring, of silence, or of remaining frozen/ motionless. Often used in djs to indicate that a character is moved beyond words, stunned beyond words, or just generally beyond words. (see also jiiiin)

shiku shiku = sobbing, whimpering

shire = shrug (we think) Definitely a strange 'don't look at me' look.

shittori = moist. Also calm, soothing.

shizu = move solemnly

shobo shobo = sadness, moping

shu = quick movement, fabric rubbing, swish

shuuuu = fog, mist, steam

shubo = the sound of a flame igniting, e.g. lighting a lighter. (Maybe shu = quick movement/rubbing plus bo = light.)

shun = W-san: "This sound describes something wilting. It can be used for people, to describe being sad."

shuru, shururu, shurun = snaking motion. Often used for Rose Whip or other vines or tendrils snaking around.

sorya = what to yell as you attack; a fighting taunt or war cry. (see also dorya, ora, orya, uraa)

sosokusa = running away quickly, beating a hasty retreat

sowa sowa = restless, fidgety (as in 'Ammari sowasowa shinaide!' (Don't get so fidgety!), the first line of 'Lum no Love Song')

su = breathe in (compare to fu, breathe out)

su = slow movement, e.g. cloth slowly slipping off, someone moving smoothly

sube sube = smooth

subu = see tsubu

sui = smooth movement, as of a good skater

suka = whooshy sound. K-san: "the sound of swinging a baseball bat and missing." Togashi frequently uses it for punches missing.

suka = something sparse. K-san: "When you get a big box which is light for its size, and you shake it, and the packing material makes rustling sounds, that's suka suka. Or when you put on a big pair of jeans, you say 'These are suka suka (too big).'"

suka, suya = sleeping (see also gu, ku, supigu)

suka, sukari, sukkiri, sukato = feeling of refreshment. K-san: "for example, when you drink a carbonated drink on a hot day." (see also sawa, sawayaka)

sukon = plunk, plonk

suku = getting up, standing up

sunari = slender, smooth, graceful (see also surari)

supa, supari = cutting or breaking something (see also zuba)

supigu = peaceful sleep, a whistling sound (see also gu, ku, suka, suya)

suppa suppa = puff puff

supo = pop? Anyway, the sound of tight something being pulled off (or pulled out), such as Hiei's boot coming off his foot, or an arrow coming out of Hiei-chan's head.

surari, surarito = long and straight, slim, slender (see also sunari)

suru = slow movement, e.g. cloth slowly slipping off....

suta = landing (as in after you've jumped)

sutatata = running

suten = falling

sutetete = a little kid running fast

suton = sit

taaaaa = dashing, running (see also da, do do do, tatata)

tappuri = full, stuffed

tatatata = running lightly

tehe = teehee, giggle

teka teka = shiny, smooth surface

teku teku = walking (see also to to to, toko toko)

ten ten tenmari tentemari = traditional song to accompany bouncing a ball

tere = abashed. K-san: "Embarrassed in a happy way. Like when you're asked out on a date by somebody you like, you go 'tere.'"

to = quiet impact, e.g. a soft landing from a jump

to to to = walking (see also teku, toko)

to, ton, tonde = jumping

tobo tobo = dejected walking

toko toko = walking (see also teku teku)

tokun = harder heartbeat (see also dokun)

ton = fairly quiet impact

tontonton = chopchopchop (as of food) or any other light continuous action (see also dondondon)

toppuri = night falling, the sun disappearing

tote = toddle toddle (see also hote)

tsu = A small tsu on its own in a word balloon puzzled us for a while. We tried various things, but finally M.J. came up with what we think is the best solution. "I hear it as a slightly high-pitched 'uh' made by catching your breath in your throat." So from now on we're translating it as 'uh.'

tsu, su = rain

tsu, tsuuuu = bzzzzzzzz (insect sound)

tsubu = eyes (and only eyes) closing

tsun tsun = bad-smelling, stinky (see also pun pun)

tsuru, tsurun = sliding, also used for something smooth or slick

tsutsutsu, sususu = sliding

tsuya tsuya = shining, glowing (the way Kurama looks in the morning ^_^)

u = ugh, urgh, ulp! A grunt or growl of surprise, pain, or anger.

uchu = kiss (see also buchu, chu, nchu)

ugogo = choking

uka uka, ukkari = daydreaming, not paying attention

ukkun = swallow, gulp (see also gokun, kokun)

umu = uh, uh-huh, hmm (see also fumu)

uni = the noise you make with your mouth when you're waking up

unsho = effort (see also nsho, yoisho)

unzari = bored, fed up

uraaa, uryaaa = roar, war cry (see also dorya, ora, orya, sorya)

ura ura = swaying

uto = nodding off

utsura = half-asleep

uttori = enraptured by beauty

uuu = sound of anger: Urrgh!

uwaaaa! = exclamation: Auuugh!

uzo uzo = menace. A sound that evil creatures and nasty plants make. (see also gi gi and go go go)


wa! = (a character saying it) Wow! Ack!

waa, waaa waaa = (a crowd's) excited roar (see also wai wai, wara wara)

wai = (a character saying it) feminine exclamation of delight. M.J. says of 'wai' and 'wai wai,' "Both are also kid's language for delight, is why female characters say it to be cute, I think."

wai wai = (as a background effect) noise, excitement, lots of people talking (see also wa, wara wara)

waku, waku waku = excitement. K-san: "Happy cute excitement."

wan wan = bow wow

wara wara = crowd noise (see also waa, wai wai)

wasa wasa = rustle rustle?

wata wata = flap flap


yaho, yahoi = yoohoo! hey! hi!

yakimoki = fretting, worrying

yanwari = soft, gentle

yare-yare = one of the words/phrases we've left in the original. What you say when you're frustrated, exasperated, or giving up: Oh, well. What the heck. Good grief.

yoisho = effort (see also nsho, unsho)

yoji = the sound a cockroach makes when crawling up your back. May be related to jiri jiri, which is inching.

yoro, yororo = stagger, waddle, walk shakily

yusa = shaking (something)

za, za za za = footstep on grass, walking quickly or running through grass or bushes

za = generic white noise sound, can be tv static, etc.

ZA! = strong, energetic movement.

za za, zaa zaaa = rustling, e.g., wind rustling in leaves, grass

zaa = rain (louder rain than saa)

zaba, zabu, zabun = big splash (see also jabon, shapu, and bashan, picha, pisha for smaller splashes)

ZAKU! = cross between za and zoku?

zashu = lash, slash

zawa = rustle. May be specific to plants, we've seen it used for trees and Kurama's power rising.

zawa = crowd noise

ze, zei = wheeze, gasp

zoku, zotto = chill or shiver (see also chiri)

zooon = rumbling, shaking

zu = drool or other liquid flowing

zu = sip, slurp (see also zuzu)

zu, zun = vigorous motion

zu(uu), zu(uu)n = disappointment, sadness. W-san: "It often describes things sinking, and can mean a sinking heart."

zuba, zubari = to slice or cut with a single blow (see also supa)

zugagaga, zugogogo = combination of vigorous action and menace? Anyway, loud drastic things happening.

zuki = sharp pain

zumo, zumomomo = menace, looming

zunguri = dumpy

zuri, zuriri, zuru = stagger when walking, or fall back in shock (see also gura)

zuru = sip, slurp (see also zuzu)

zuru = strong movement, more vigorous than 'suru'

zuru, zuru zuru = something heavy dragging or being pulled

zururu = slurp (see jururu)

zusasa = zu (vigorous) plus sasa (quick motion). We've seen it used for a quick scuttling recoil.

zuzu = sip (see also zuru)

Originally found at www.oop-ack.com/manga/soundfx.html