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I would like to know if there are other ways to say "at least~" (context below), along with the relevant nuances of each way.

This is for a piece of writing I'm doing where for the sake of style I want to avoid using the same phrase too many times. That said, please do include answers that may only be suitable for speech or conversation.

I am referring to "at least~" as used in the following context:

It looks like I won't be able to return to Japan for at least 6 months
少なくとも6ヶ月の間日本に帰れないみたです。

(in other words I'm not looking for answers referring to phrases like せめて〜, which translates to a different meaning of the English phrase "at least")

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Hmm, not sure why my markdown in the Japanese example sentence failed... it looks fine in the preview. –  ジョン Apr 10 '12 at 19:02
2  
Yeah, the asterisks, etc. markdown don't work for Japanese text. You have to use html tags. –  istrasci Apr 10 '12 at 19:17
    
That's useful to know - thanks :) –  ジョン Apr 10 '12 at 19:18
    
Just as in English, we would consult a thesaurus, in Japanese, you can consult a 類語辞典. –  Jesse Good Apr 12 '12 at 1:56
    
@Jesse Thanks for the link. I wouldn't normally think to use a thesaurus for what is more of a grammar question about the nuance of phrases. –  ジョン Apr 12 '12 at 13:08

1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted
  • 最短で 'for the shortest'
  • 少なく見積もって 'under the least/shortest estimate'
  • as in 六か月は
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Also, 以上, for example 6ヶ月以上. –  Jesse Good Apr 12 '12 at 1:58
    
@Jesse I could be wrong, but the nuance of 以上 seems different, like "for more than 6 months" rather than "at least 6 months", so not really what I'm looking for. –  ジョン Apr 12 '12 at 13:01
    
@ジョン It does not mean more than six months. It means six months or more, which is the same as at least six months, distegarding the implication. –  user458 Apr 12 '12 at 14:07
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@sawa Sorry for the confusion. The implication you mention is what I was referring to in my comment, but I see that I phrased it poorly. That's why 以上 seems less suitable to me than the examples in your answer. For future reference am I correct in thinking this or am I making a mistake? –  ジョン Apr 12 '12 at 14:36
    
@ジョン I agree with you about the implication. You are right. –  user458 Apr 12 '12 at 14:40

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