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.

I searched for both they mean to wake up.

When do I need to use 目覚める and 起きる.

share|improve this question
Don't forget to add 起床 to your list. (meaning to get up and out of bed. –  paullb Jul 31 at 5:40

1 Answer 1

up vote 4 down vote accepted

起きる literally means "to get up", while 目覚める means "(your) eyes are opened". This can mean either literally (i.e., waking up from sleep) or metaphorically (come to one's senses, come to a realization).

share|improve this answer
Though that doesn't mean Okiru cant or isn't used metaphorically. –  dino Jul 29 at 21:15

Your Answer


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.