The hiragana in the top line below means 'Welcome' in Japanese. We saw it on the paper wrappers of the chopsticks in a Thai restaurant on rue Ste-Catherine (2010 Jul 29).

The second and third lines show variants that involve irregular kana usage. The small tsu indicates a doubling of the following consonant.
Hiragana Romaji Character names
irasshaimase i ra tsu shi ya i ma se
irashaimase i ra shi ya i ma se
irrashaimase i tsu ra shi ya i ma se

The hiragana images, the romaji transliterations and the information about irregular usage is from Jeffrey's Japanese<->English Dictionary Server.

The following lines display the hiragana using the Sazanami Mincho and Sazanami Gothic fonts:

Mincho いらっしやいませ subset font

Gothic いらっしやいませ subset font

Gothic いらっしやいませ original font

The fonts on the first two lines are invoked using @font-face with .ttf files generated by Ethan Dunham's @font-face generator for the kana subsets of the Sazanami fonts. For some reason this has resulted in extra space between the characters, at least under some circumstances under Windows. The font on the third line is from the original .ttf file, where the spacing is normal even when it's abnormal with the subset fonts.

Under some circumstances Mincho is displayed instead of Gothic. Mincho should look like the .gif images at the top of the page. Gothic should be heavier but less ornate.

R. Funnell
Last modified: Mon, 2010 Aug 2 11:09:31