Hime () is the Japanese word for princess or a lady of higher birth. 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 Ōjo.[citation needed]

Sen-hime (千姫), the eldest daughter of Tokugawa Hidetada

The word Hime initially referred to any beautiful female person. 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).[citation needed]

Hime is commonly seen as part of a 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 Japanese male gods' names, such as Saruta-hiko. Unlike Hime, Hiko is neutral, non-archaic and still commonly used as a modern Japanese male given name, for example Nobuhiko Takada.[citation needed]

Etymology edit

Originally a compound of sun (, hi) and woman (, me).[1][2]

Proverb edit

  • 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 fewer 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, and therefore could be read as, "One girl, two boys."[citation needed]

Usage edit

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.[citation needed]

Historical edit

Sengoku Period edit

Literature edit

In popular culture edit

Castle edit

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ 1988,  (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Shogakukan
  2. ^ 2006, , Third Edition (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Sanseidō, →ISBN