Take the 2-minute tour ×
Japanese Language Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for students, teachers, and linguists wanting to discuss the finer points of the Japanese language. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Both ごとに and おきに appear to mean "repeatedly at intervals".

What is the difference between these two expressions?

share|improve this question
1  
+1 for jkerian’s edit. –  Tsuyoshi Ito Feb 11 '13 at 18:04

1 Answer 1

up vote 15 down vote accepted

1日おきに = 2日ごとに (every other day, every second day)
●○●○●○●...

2日おきに = 3日ごとに (every three days, every third day)
●○○●○○●○○●...

ごとに(毎に) http://ejje.weblio.jp/content/%E3%81%94%E3%81%A8%E3%81%AB
おきに(置きに) http://ejje.weblio.jp/content/2%E6%97%A5%E7%BD%AE%E3%81%8D%E3%81%AB
おき(置き) came from the verb 置く(leave). I think it's like "an interval (between the actions)" here. cf. 「[間隔]{かんかく}を[置]{お}く」

 

share|improve this answer
1  
Nice usage of the black & white dots. Thanks for confirming my suspicions on the difference. But is there a way to say "Skip every third day" with おきに? Like ●●○●●○...? –  istrasci Feb 11 '13 at 23:44
    
thank you very good answer –  Homura Rin Feb 12 '13 at 0:10
    
@istrasci う~~ん・・「3日に2日」かなあ・・・??わからへん!ww –  Choko Feb 12 '13 at 13:10
4  
@istrasci: 三日に二日, which Chocolate mentioned, roughly means what you want, but I think that 三日に二日 refers more to the ratio 2/3 than the regular pattern of Yes-Yes-No-Yes-Yes-No-…. I do not think that there is a concise phrase which exactly describes this patter Yes-Yes-No-Yes-Yes-No-…, either in English or in Japanese, unless you count expressions such as 二日おきに休む as what you want. –  Tsuyoshi Ito Feb 12 '13 at 17:50

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.