The flame and the flood


Literally: heaven – change – earth – different

Alternately: Natural disasters or bizarre natural phenomena. Bad or weird stuff that’s not man-made. You know, like eclipses, record-breaking storms, and floods.

Notes: 天変 refers to unusual celestial events like meteors, comets, and eclipses, along with bizarre or drastic weather such as tornadoes, torrential rain, and powerful storms. 地異 refers to terrestrial events such as earthquakes and tsunami, floods, and volcanic eruptions.

Apparently some people replace 天 with homophone 転, but this is considered an error. On the other hand, doubling the 変 to get 天変地変 (~chi.hen) is a valid alternate version.


That’s a scar from a pyroclastic flow that tore a town in half and killed dozens of people. Fifteen years later, I was living within sight of the volcano, albeit on the other side.

About Confanity

I love the written word more than anything else I've had the chance to work with. I'm back in the States from Japan for grad school, but still studying Japanese with the hope of becoming a translator -- or writer, or even teacher -- as long as it's something language-related.
This entry was posted in Japanese, Yojijukugo and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s