Affixes, particles and conjugations applied to words to mark respect.

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What is お in お元気ですか?

Sorry if this is a very basic question, but I'm trying to understand everything in my first lesson (online, Rocket Japanese). I don't understand what the purpose of お is in the phrase お元気ですか, which ...
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233 views

How rude is it to speak to a Japanese stranger informally instead of using the polite form?

Are there any native Japanese here that could tell me how rude it is to speak informally to Japanese people I have never met instead of using the polite form? I'm assuming it's more rude the older the ...
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94 views

In this sentence, is changing “迎える” to “迎えられる” for a potential or honorific reason?

Here is part of a document that I am reading: 本日は、世界最高の大学のひとつで卒業式を迎えられる皆さんとご一緒できて、とても光栄です。 "everyone who is able to be attending" or "everyone who is attending" as an honorific ?
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57 views

When in doubt between -chan and -kun what to choose?

I want to call one of my friend, who is not Japanese, by adding -chan or -kun to his name. The friend is a student of Japanese as myself from the same group. A male, not homosexual. I think he's about ...
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117 views

Why is “さん” used as a suffix for these people's CVs / profiles?

Please look at the profile for any of these interpreters: http://www.hicareer.jp/inter/ In the プロフィール section, underneath the photos, their names are written, and "さん" is added to the end of each name....
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199 views

て-form and other conjugations of 謙譲語

In my limited exposure to 尊敬語【そんけいご】 and 謙譲語【けんじょうご】, I feel like I've only really seen them used in their normal -ます forms and never in て form or conjugated such as a -たい form. Are honorific and ...
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168 views

Desire form verbs (~たい), is there a polite form?

I was just curious if there is a way to make the ~たい form polite? for example 戦いたい - Want to fight I was thinking possibly using the honorific form instead of the masu form might be acceptable? ...
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116 views

What is the function of “o”?

Why do people have to add "o" to "namae" like "Onamae wa?"
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268 views

けっこんしていらっしゃいますか or けっこんなさっていますか

I was doing an exercise in which you are supposed to change questions into honorific expressions (Genki II second ed, pg. 175 Ex. C.9.) when I stumbled upon a question which had an answer that seems ...
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135 views

How to say “Do you want to know?” in Japanese 尊敬語?

In 尊敬語、we use 「ご存じですか。」to say "Do you know?". Now, how do we say for asking 「知りたいでしょうか。」or "Do you want to know?" in Japanese 尊敬語?
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102 views

Should I repeat -san to refer to someone whos name ends in san?

My friend's name is Allisan, how can I make it clear that her name is オーリサン and the honorific 'san' is not included and furthermore how can she introduce herself without sounding like a smug to ...
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210 views

What are the differences between なさる and される?

I noticed なさる and される are both used as 尊敬語. What are some of their differences? How do I know when to use each one?
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Can a sonkeigo verb be used with an inanimate subject? / 尊敬語は無生物主語に対して使えますか?

As a background, consider this question: “is this sentence correct 会議は三時からでいらっしゃいます.?” My initial thought was like this: A sonkeigo (尊敬語) verb is used to show the speaker’s respect toward the ...
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is this sentence correct 会議は三時からでいらっしゃいます.?

会議は三時からでいらっしゃいます. (I'm studying the honorific and humble forms) Thank you
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404 views

Which form is 切り?

On a Japanese package I've found this inscription: ここからお切り下さい。 This obviously means: "Please cut here (to open)". With my very basic knowledge of Japanese I would instead of お切り (お being the ...
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100 views

Should I use honorifics to say (言う 'iu') for subordinate clauses?

When I use という to-iu, for example: これと同{おな}じ「草{くさ}」というものがここに生{は}えますか? Kore to onaji “kusa” to-iu mono ga kokoni haemasu ka? Does something like this so-called “grass” grow around here? ...
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205 views

How is “おらず” used in the following sentence?

I'm trying to read a short story whose theme (I think?) is that in order to have self-awareness other people are necessary. Like, they act as abstract mirrors to view oneself (or something...). So, I ...
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91 views

ございます - Humble or neutral?

I was under the impression that ございます was a humble form of ある. My belief was supported by websites such as this and this. However, in the comments to this question's answer, user4092 says it isn't a ...
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117 views

おる in honorific contexts

Usually, we're told that おる is a humble verb, and that mostly holds true. But sometimes I see it conjugated to a light honorific form おられる, usually when talking about someone to whom respect must be ...
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206 views

The usage of 様{さま} (-sama) honorific

I've always heard that 様 is a highly respectful honorific, being used to refer to lords, kings and deities. However, many times I hear people calling someone with 様, without sarcasm or irony, being ...
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How does a single verb construct work when it has both honorific and humble auxiliaries?

An example textbook sentence: かかるついでに、見たてまつり給はむや How about looking at him (Genji) on this occasion? たてまつる is humble auxiliary, 給ふ(給う) is honorific. Does this reflect a relationship between 3 ...
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106 views

How to address a formal email response to a 学会本部事務局 when you don't know if the person is a 教授 or not?

I received the following email and I want to submit the 要旨, but should I address the body of my email to 加島 or to 本部事務局? I did a Google search for her full name but I didn't find it on a university ...
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78 views

In what contexts might one say “風呂{ふろ}” instead of “お[風呂]{ふろ}”?

In what contexts might "風呂" be used instead of "お風呂"? "お巡りさん" has been lexicalized. "お茶" is almost lexicalized. What about "お風呂"?
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can one ever say “おいかがですか?”

I have almost always added 美化語{びかご} to "いかが" (making "おいかが"). However, a native speaker just told me that "おいかが" sounds unnatural. I'd like to double check this. Is it ever natural to add 美化語 to "いかが"...
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821 views

Can a man address a woman with sama 様【さま】?

I've seen Japanese women address their husbands with the -sama suffix. Would it be appropriate for a man do the same in some cases? In which context can this be used?
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233 views

Is “して” dropped in this phrase “ご利用{りよう}ください”?

I happened across this in a document: これより前の記事は、サイト内検索をご利用ください。 Why can you say "ご利用ください"? 体言止めい? But, I used to hear ご利用ください used frequently in the subways... "お仕事ください" // (As noted in the ...
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74 views

~うございます construction

I already know that it's hardly used anymore, but for sentences such as 嬉しゅうございます, is this humble? That is to say, is it inappropriate to use the form for someone of higher social standing (provided ...
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182 views

What criteria decides whether to print 「氏」 or 「さん」 at the end of a person's name in newspapers?

I just realized that newspapers sometimes end a person's name with 「さん」: 後藤さん不明、昨年11月に把握 首相、答弁で明かす:。And then sometimes end a person's name with 「氏」: 自民・山本一太氏、人質事件で与野党結束訴え:。 In this forum, I found this ...
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145 views

What is the difference between 酒 and お酒?

I know that adding お makes it honorific, but I want to know how they're used differently.
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275 views

謙譲語{けんじょうご} nouns such as 弊社{へいしゃ}, etc

As explained in the thread titled "Can 美化語{びかご} create implied subjects?", in a very, very limited number of circumstances a noun could be upgraded to pseudo-尊敬語 by using 美化語 (such as ご気分{きぶん}, etc). ...
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220 views

can 美化語{びかご} create implied subjects?

As mentioned in the Addressing strangers without knowing the name thread, 敬語{けいご} often communicates the implied actors in a sentence. The thread titled using 美化語 in 謙譲語 verb forms does not make sense,...
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139 views

「~てはいただけません」- Why the は?

こんなちなみを ・・ ・・ ユルしてはいただけませんの? I'm playing Ace Attorney 3 (逆転裁判3), and there's a girl in the dock (ちなみ) giving evidence. She's just been found to be lying about something and is asking for ...
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284 views

What are appropriate situations where you use 何卒 to end a formal correspondence?

Good day! I've seen some emails ending with 何卒宜しくお願い致します but I was wondering if it just raises the respect/politeness of a letter or does it have specific situations where it should/shouldn't be use? ...
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334 views

Why do Japanese businessmen use 「さん」 even with うち names in meetings with foreigners

I noticed that many Japanese businessmen tend to address the colleagues they are traveling with, or even introduce themselves as ◯◯◯さん. This would clearly be a faux-pas in a Japanese-only meeting, yet ...
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125 views

Looking Up Whether 御 is お or ご

Is there a good was to look up whether a 御 prefix is お or ご for a word? I know there is the Chinese origin versus Japanese origin thing (mentioned here). But is there a way to look up for a certain ...
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205 views

Prefix お for names - how is it used?

I recently watched a Japanese drama titled 「おせん」. The title comes from the first name of the main character - the character's name is 半田{はんだ}仙{せん} who is a young お上{かみ} of a traditional restaurant. ...
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197 views

Question about mixed kana in おススメ

I read this line in a blog today: 料理に使えるおススメ品や、ご飯屋さんを紹介しています。 and I have two questions: 1) I know that the writer can use katakana for emphasis or for some other reason, but why is it mixed ...
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656 views

To be polite, say “おいくらですか” and not “いくらですか”?

"いくらですか?” seems like a common phrase taught to all students of Japanese? But, instead of saying "いくらですか?", I always used to go honorific and say "おいくらですか?". Is adding 美化語{びかご} to "いくら" wrong? Could ...
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“Formal” Japanese and “honorific” Japanese, are completely different, right?

My understanding is that, strictly speaking, "honorific" Japanese 敬語{けいご} is completely different from "formal" Japanese 丁寧語{ていねいご}. Yet, I sometimes hear even native speakers conflate them: ex: 「する」...
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858 views

“くださいませんか” vs. “いただけませんか”

When I want to make 「それを見せて下さい。」 more formal, I always say 「それを見せて頂けませんか?」. But, I want to double-check this.    I never say 「それを見せて下さいませんか。」. While that seems perfectly fine, I don't think I've ...
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208 views

which nouns can use 美化語{びかご}?

(-) Whether a noun is サ変名詞{さへんめいし}, or not, is an attribute that is specified in the dictionary definition of nouns. (-). "Possible to use 美化語{びかご}" surely should be an attribute of a noun? But, I do ...
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How many times should 「お」 and 「ご」 be used in a sentence?

In this Chiebukuro question about whether it should be ご心配無用 or 心配ご無用, one answerer says the following: 「ご」とか「お」で丁寧とか尊敬とかを表す場合、 一番最後のものにだけつけておけば 全体にかかると言われているようです。 たとえば 「住所氏名年齢職業を”お”書きのうえ」...
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Using the causative form (使役形) to create humble language (謙譲語)?

"この町に住ませて頂きたいんです。" is a line from a movie. That grammar makes sense to me. In this context, 使役形 is used to create a humble mood. (頂く) makes it even more humble. Based on that, today I said: "3年ぐらい、...
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196 views

a few words have an honorific 「お」or「ご」 as a necessary prefix, right?

I just came a across the word 「お巡りさん」。While 「お巡り」 is a word, 「巡り」 is not. Likewise, 「ご飯」 is a word, but while 「飯」is a word, the reading changes to the 訓読み (めし)。This means that the 「ご」in「ご飯」is not ...
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314 views

using 美化語 in 謙譲語 verb forms does not make sense, right?

So, 美化語 is used to create honorifics: お名前 ご注文 etc. But, the standard way to create the 謙譲語 form of verbs is: お+[verb stem] + いたします That does not make logical sense to modify the action that you are ...
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141 views

The correct usage of 召し上がる and お召し上がる

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 ...
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246 views

Who are Mrs. Fuji and Mrs. Gas?

Is there any etymological relationship between the -さん suffix in 富士山 or 月山 and the -さん suffix you put at the end of a person's name? Or are they unrelated?
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686 views

With whom to use different honorific forms? 丁寧語より尊敬語・謙譲語・丁重語

With whom is it considered proper to use 尊敬語・謙譲語・丁重語 instead of 丁寧語? I mean saying おいでになります・伺います・参ります instead of 行きます. The often given example is for a service-person speaking with a customer, but ...
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859 views

Verbs which are more frequently used to built the honorific passive forms

I'd like to ask you a question about this honorific form. I will give an example as detailed as possible to make this question clear. The verb yomu is often used in passive form to show respect: ...
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199 views

What's the difference between お待ちになる and 待たれる?

I know they're both polite ways to use a verb, but my materials never taught me what unique traits each one has. Is it just the tone, or is there more to it?