QUOTE(animejunkie429800 @ Feb 4 2005, 07:11 AM)
hey Sycia u no how u said that nee-san is Little Sister? well i asked my Japenese frend and she said its Older brother not little sister!
is little sis....
Er...ahem. Here, as a fifth-year student of the Japanese language, lemme set you straight.
Oniisan (pronounced oh-NEE-sahn): older brother
(Variants: Niisan, niichan, ani, aniki, aniue. Al calls Ed "niisan"; he called him "niichan", the more childish-sounding equivalent, in flashbacks to their pre-metal youth. Nina called Ed "chicchai oniisan", or "little older brother", and Al "ookii oniisan", or "big older brother". Children in the series, such as the small girl on the train in episode 4, often refer to the brothers as "niisan" or some variant, because it is the custom in Japan to call young men older than yourself by the honorifics you would give to a brother.
Oneesan (pronounced oh-NAY-sahn): older sister
(Variants: Neesan, neechan, ane, aneki, aneue. Elysia and other small children often call Winry by this title, for the same reasons that they refer to Ed and Al as "niisan". Ed and Al made a quick and desperate switch to this honorific after Izumi nearly killed them for calling her "obaasan", or "grandma" at their first meeting, a term more appropriate for Pinako.
Otouto: little brother
(Since this is a lower position, older siblings generally call their otouto by their first names, without any kind of honorific, except sometimes the affectionate "-chan". Hence Ed calls Al simply "Al".)
Imouto: little sister
(Same rules as otouto.)
Somewhat off-topic, I know, but the mixups are bugging me to no end. Hope that made things a bit clearer.