Anime Underground
4.7k voters

A Glossary Of Anime Terms You Really Have To Know To Be An Otaku

Updated July 2, 2021 53k votes 4.7k voters 136.2k views36 items

List RulesVote up the otaku words and terms that you hear on the floor of every anime con.

Ever been in the middle of a heated conversation with an otaku and find yourself stumped over whatever anime terminology they're talking about? Well, you'll never have to scour the web for whatever that otaku jargon meant again because you have your anime dictionary right here. Here, you'll find anime terms and common words that you'll hear at every single convention, so be sure to pay attention to the otaku terminology that you need to know in order to survive out in the nerd world. Get ready to expand your anime vocabulary!

This repository includes both Japanese and American super-geek terminology and everything necessary for navigating your way around anime fandom. After all, you don't want to be a lost and confused wannabe weeaboo. 

Photo:
  • 1

    Senpai

    Japanese terminology used as the title for an upperclassman, usually someone who is older. This person is typically a mentor of some sort but is below the rank of sensei.

    The word can often have a silly or affectionate meaning behind it.

    2,423
    123
    Is this important?
  • 2

    Baka

    A Japanese word meaning "fool" or "idiot." 

    Usually, this word is used in its own sentence as an insult.

    2,459
    130
    Is this important?
  • 3

    Manga

    Manga are Japanese comics that are typically read from back to front, and from left to right.

    When they're localized for the West, they're called graphic novels.

    2,031
    131
    Is this important?
  • 4

    Sensei

    Photo: Naruto / Viz Media

    When a person is called sensei, it means that they are a teacher in some form.

    Most commonly seen in martial arts or classroom settings, the sensei is the person who has a profession or skill that is higher than another. It is also a Japanese term of honor which means one who is born before another.

    1,919
    129
    Is this important?