Without any doubt, the Japanese language is one of the most difficult languages in the world. In the past, it was defined as "The Devil's tongue". The expression is commonly attributed to Francis Xavier, the famous Jesuit missionary who visited Japan around the middle of XVI century.
This page focuses on the research of the origins of the Japanese language and the etymology of Japanese words. The origins of Japanese are still subject of debate among scholars of historical linguistics, and no definite solution has been reached so far. The Japonic family, which includes Japanese and Ryukyuan languages, is considered to be isolated and not belonging to any of the Asian linguistic families. During the last century, scholars have made several attempts in order to find a connection with Altaic, Austronesian, Dravidian, Austroasiatic, Tibeto-Burman, Korean and Koguryo languages, but the problem of the origins of the Japanese language remains unresolved.
The following two documents are my very modest contribution to the study of the origins of the Japanese language. Hopefully, other documents will be added to the list in the near future.
(1) La voce lessicale onna 女 nel giapponese moderno e la ricerca delle sue origini
(2) Giapponese e lingue vicine
Useful external links:
Oxford-NINJAL Corpus of Old Japanese