To Go Up


To Rise, To Get Higher

Word Type

intransitive verb, godan verb


This word consists of kanji with hiragana attached. Because the hiragana ends with an sound, you know this word is a verb.

This is an intransitive verb. That means it does not take a direct object. The kanji means above so this means something rises. For example: A fever goes up. The sun rises. See? No direct object here. That's why this verb means to go up or to rise.

Be careful not to confuse this with its transitive buddy 上げる, which means "to lift something" or "to raise something." With that other verb, someone is doing the lifting, it's not happening by itself like it is here.


  • Kyoko
    (Tokyo accent, female)
  • Kenichi
    (Tokyo accent, male)


Since this word has okurigana (hiragana attached to the kanji) you can guess that it uses the kun'yomi reading, which also happens to be a reading you didn't learn when you learned the kanji. Let's use a mnemonic for the kun'yomi reading now, though. You have to remember at least the part to read it.

You know that this word means to go up. Imagine something just rising on its own, like a floating tree or something. What would you say? Probably a "surprised" sound. Maybe you'd scream "!" when you saw this floating tree.

If you need help remembering the hiragana part, imagine that it's a girl rising up and you scream "Ah! Girl!"(あがる).


Common Word Combinations

  • 一気に上がる

    to go up all at once


    to go up on stage


    to step into the ring


    to go up

Context Sentences


Fireworks get set off in August.


Let's take the elevator up three floors.


My cholesterol has gone up from last year.

Kanji Composition