Best Japanese Dictionaries for Learners of All Levels

Are you a Japanese learner in search of the perfect dictionary? Look no further! A reliable Japanese-to-English dictionary is an essential tool for anyone learning Japanese. Not only does it help us to learn Japanese faster, but it also enables us to remember Japanese words more accurately.

In this article, we will be exploring the top Japanese dictionaries available in 2023, covering everything from traditional paper dictionaries to innovative smartphone apps. Let’s go!

Online Japanese dictionaries


Japanese dictionary Jisho

First up is Jisho designed by Kim Ahlstrom. Jisho is a powerful online Japanese dictionary that offers a wide range of functions, including detailed definitions, example sentences, kanji stroke order diagrams, and more. This website also allows you to search for words by radical, by drawing the kanji character, or by specific word types (such as verbs or adjectives). is an excellent resource for both beginner and advanced learners who want to expand their vocabulary, or enhance Japanese grammar.


Japanese dictionary Takoboto

Next on our list is Takoboto. Like Jisho, this user-friendly dictionary is perfect for beginners and intermediate learners alike. It offers both Japanese-to-English and English-to-Japanese translations, as well as definitions, sentence examples, and even audio pronunciations. The app’s neat interface makes it easy to navigate and find the information you need quickly.


Japanese dictionary Weblio

Weblio takes things one step further by offering not only a dictionary but also an encyclopedia-style knowledge portal with articles on Japanese culture, history, and language. The dictionary provides detailed definitions and includes synonyms and antonyms for each word. You can also find related words based on the specific kanji characters used in the search term.


Aedict is another very popular Japanese-English dictionary app that can be downloaded for free on both Android and iOS devices. This dictionary not only provides definitions for words and phrases, but it also includes example sentences and audio recordings of native speakers pronouncing the word or phrase. Aedict is perfect for beginners as well as intermediate learners who are looking to improve their vocabulary.

NHK Japanese Pronunciation Dictionary

Last on the list is the NHK Japanese Pronunciation Dictionary – an online resource provided by Japan’s national broadcasting organization. This dictionary focuses specifically on pronunciation, which can be one of the most challenging aspects of learning any new language. You can listen to audio clips of native speakers saying specific words or phrases and practice your own pronunciation skills. The NHK Japanese Pronunciation Dictionary is ideal for intermediate-level students who want to refine their pronunciation and accent.


Paper dictionaries

Kodansha’s Furigana Japanese Dictionary

Are you a beginner in learning the Japanese language and struggling with kanji? Then Kodansha’s Furigana Japanese Dictionary is an excellent choice for you! This dictionary includes furigana, which are small hiragana characters written next to kanji to indicate their pronunciation. With over 50,000 entries, this comprehensive dictionary also provides example sentences and idioms, making it easier for learners to understand how words are used in context.

What sets this dictionary apart from others is its focus on contemporary usage. It includes slang and colloquial expressions that aren’t typically found in traditional dictionaries. Additionally, there are appendices at the end of the book that cover grammar rules and verb conjugations.

Kodansha’s Furigana Japanese Dictionary is perfect for beginners to navigate difficult kanji readings and learn up-to-date Japanese everyday expressions.

The Kanji Dictionary

The Kanji Dictionary is a great choice for intermediate and advanced-level learners who are looking to expand their kanji vocabulary. This dictionary includes over 6,000 kanji characters along with stroke order, on-yomi and kun-yomi readings, meanings, and examples of how the character is used in context. The Kanji Dictionary also provides useful tips on how to memorize these complex characters effectively.

Oxford Beginner’s Japanese Dictionary

For beginners who are just starting out learning Japanese, Oxford Beginner’s Japanese Dictionary is an excellent option. This dictionary includes basic vocabulary that will help you build your language foundation. It has clear definitions in English alongside hiragana or katakana spellings of each word. It’s relatively easy for beginners to simply understand the most common meanings without getting lost in too many details.

However, while having access to useful dictionaries is important, it’s equally important to have a comprehensive language learning source. That’s where LingoDeer comes in – a language app that helps you learn Japanese from scratch. It has interactive lessons, games, and more to help you learn Japanese consistently. Download LingoDeer today for free!

Happy learning!


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6 months ago

Japanese Kanji Study by Chase Colburn is practically Jisho for smartphones.