Japanese geography explained

Why is the same Tama River in Kanto written both as 玉川 and 多摩川?

How can Kanagawa be both a part of Yokohama and the name of the Prefecture that Yokohama is in?

Why is Sado Island famous for gold when the mines actually produced more silver?

1 Comment

  1. higanbana said,

    June 15, 2009 at 2:11 am

    GAPPEI? (i.e. merger of two cities) Yokohama was bigger and more important, so the new city got the name from old Yokohama.

    The fact that a city or smaller town and a prefecture share the same name is quite common in Japan.

    Regarding Tama River, both are ATEJI, the river’s name had the sound of TAMA, and different people simply chose different ways to write it. Similar to personal names which have the same pronounciation but different Kanji to write the name with.

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