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. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Possible Duplicate:
What is the difference between ~げ and ~そう

What is the difference between 〜げ and 〜そう?

Consider for example:



Or are they synonyms?

share|improve this question

marked as duplicate by istrasci, Dono, snailplane, cypher, ento Nov 6 '12 at 6:12

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

Also, if anyone happens to no by any chance: how do you type "づ" on a Mac keyboard? If I have it on hiragana then I can't seem to find it anywhere. "ず" is easy because it's "z-u"... – Rudy the Reindeer Nov 5 '12 at 21:41
= 'du' on most IME's. – istrasci Nov 5 '12 at 22:00
Just a note: -ge is 気. It may help you interpret it by thinking of it like 気配 (kehai). – Dono Nov 6 '12 at 2:15
@istrasci Thank you! – Rudy the Reindeer Nov 6 '12 at 7:20
@MattN.: Since the た line is typed with 't', just use 'd' for the だ line, even if the romaji is a different letter. – istrasci Nov 7 '12 at 17:21
up vote 5 down vote accepted

They are very similar, however there is a slight difference in nuance. げ implies a stronger sense of uncertainty compared to そう.

So, in your first example, you are not certain whether he wanted to say something or not, while in the second example, you are almost certain that he wants to say something.

Another example:

彼が楽しそうに話している //#1

彼が楽しげに話している //#2

If you saw the person and noticed that they were laughing, smiling, etc. You are most likely to use version #1 and not version #2 because you are confident about your conjecture.

However, although in standard dialect there is the distinction I mentioned above, in some dialects (and in young people's slang) they do no make this distinction and げ is used commonly to mean そう.

share|improve this answer

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