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A Japanese friend of mine explained to me that many people often incorrectly use the honorific お in the example sentence. The correct sentence is without the お.

I have two questions regarding this point, has anyone seen, or heard this mistake? Secondly, can anyone explain the rule that is governing this particular part of language and why the お is incorrect in this case.

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I think you mean 召し上がる... –  execjosh Aug 30 '13 at 10:28
    
Yes, yes I do. Cheers. –  mwjohnson Aug 30 '13 at 10:47
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Though interestingly, it appears that 飯{めし} is related to the 召し of 召し上がる. See gogen-allguide. –  snailboat Aug 30 '13 at 10:56

2 Answers 2

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I don't think anyone would say お召し上がる. However, some people do say お召し上がれ and お召し上がりください. It shows that the speaker is trying to add more respect to the listener.

Here's an interesting short Q&A about 召し上がる.

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So according to the article and my friend confirmed this point, 召し上がる is already polite, so to add the お makes it double polite...except that there is no double polite and its actually just a grammatical mistake. –  mwjohnson Aug 30 '13 at 12:16
    
What is the reason for the down vote? –  execjosh Feb 21 at 0:13

(Incorrectly) doubling up on honorifics is sometimes called 二重{にじゅう}敬語{けいご}.

There are some good examples here. Basically, as has already been said, there are multiple ways of constructing a polite form, but they normally do not stack.

Interestingly, that particular site also gives お召し上がりになる as an example of technically incorrect forms which are acceptable due to being in common use - although probably this depends on who you ask.

This "double politeness" effect does not apply to cases where you have two or more terms involved which each undergo a single modification for politeness. They call this 敬語連結{けいごれんけつ}.

So, for example, お読みになっていらっしゃる is acceptable, converting 読む to お読みになって, and using いらっしゃる instead of いる.

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