In total, 60 abstract and 60 concrete words were selected from the NTT database based on the lexical properties of the Japanese language, including familiarity, frequency, and accent [29]. Subsequently, they were matched pairwise according to word length and familiarity with the experimental items for concreteness, length, and mean positional bigram frequency. We used the same database to create 120 pseudowords by altering a single letter from each matched word. The procedure was performed as previously described [30]. Stimuli were presented at eye level on a monitor at a distance of approximately 70 cm from the participant. Each trial was conducted as follows: a fixation crosshair was displayed for 700 ms, followed by a blank screen for 300 ms, a string for 300 ms, a blank screen for 300 ms, and finally, a question mark (“word or nonword”) that remained on the screen for 2,500 ms or until a response was provided. Subsequently, another fixation crosshair appeared. The experiment started with 10 practice trials followed by four lexical decision blocks that lasted between 3 min and 5 min each. The stimuli were randomly presented to each participant. To indicate whether the string was a Japanese word, the participants were instructed to position their left or right index fingers on two response buttons marked as word and nonword.

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