Japan (Japanese: 日本 Nippon [ɲip̚poɴ] or Nihon [ɲihoɴ]; formally 日本国 Nippon-koku or Nihon-koku, meaning "State of Japan") is a sovereign island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies off the eastern coast of the Asian mainland, and stretches from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the southwest.
The kanji that make up Japan's name mean "sun origin". 日 can be read as ni and means sun, while 本 can be read as hon, or pon and means origin. Japan is often referred to by the famous epithet "Land of the Rising Sun" in reference to its Japanese name.
Japan is a stratovolcanic archipelago consisting of about 6,852 islands. The four largest are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku, which make up about ninety-seven percent of Japan's land area and often are referred to as ...
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