Why is There No 4th Floor in Japan?


Why is There No 4th Floor?

That’s because the number “4” is associated with death. The number “4” is pronounced as “yon” or “shi”. “死” , the kanji for death, is also pronounced as “shi”. Because “死” and “4” have the same pronunciation, the number “4” is considered as bad luck.



(C)2012 綾辻行人・角川書店/「Another」製作委員会

However, in real life, there are hotels and condominiums with the 4th floor and the room number 4. Hospitals without the 4h floor like in these images from “Another” are hard to find. Also, Japanese people don’t like the number “9” because of the same reason. The number “9” is pronounced as “kyuu” or “ku”. “苦”, the kanji for suffering, is pronounced “ku” as well.

In Japan, the numbers “4” and “9” aren’t the people’s favorites, but you don’t have to avoid them like crazy. You just need to understand the numbers “4” and “9” represent bad luck for Japanese people. It is similar to the fact that people in Europe and North America don’t like the number “13”.



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