Actually Maria can be a Japanese name. You can use their "alphabet" to make it with either katakana or hiragana. I have a friend who is Japanese named Kuwamuri Maria (Which was creepy when I read that Nagano's wife's professional name was so similar.) though it's pronounced a bit differently since the Japanese language does not differentiate between the "L" and "R" sounds. And their "F's" sounds like an exhaled breath.happy hopping wrote:Isn't Maria an Italian name? Why would a Japanese has an Italian name?
Because it is a Japanese name, hiragana can be used to write it out. However, katakana is used when a word is undeniably foreign. I can't remember why, but it's not appropriate to use hiragana spellings on a non-Japanese word. So say, if you're name is Kyle if you're male or Regina if you're female, hiragana cannot be used to spell those out. Katakana is the correct form to use. This goes for all foreign words, not just names.
If you want to learn more, this is an interesting site. http://www5.big.or.jp/~otake/hey/fude00.htm
There are quite a few inbetween names such as Naomi, Mari/y, Elle/Eri and the likes, so Maria-type names are not all that uncommon. If you already know these things, that's alright too, I'll post anyway. Some people might find it interesting.
Disclaimers = I'm not an expert on the language. It was one of my native languages (I had 3) but I've long since unconciously forgotten most of it.