|Definition - One of the two syllabaries used in Japan; the other being Katakana. This was designed specifically to be used by women.|
Etymology - The word Hiragana means "plain kana" in Japanese — where kana means "borrowed letters."
Oxford English Dictionary - Its first citation is from 1822:
"These two kinds of poems are composed in firokanna, or women's writing."
(F. Shoberl tr. Titsingh's Illustr. Japan 122)