The meaning of words or phrases within certain contexts, especially when it does not seem to match the standard definition.

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5
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1answer
205 views

Does 数独{すうどく} really mean “single number”?

I've never actually played a sudoku puzzle (I know, I live in a cave!). I just saw the word written in kanji somewhere, which rekindled my interest. Wikipedia states: The puzzle was popularized ...
3
votes
2answers
99 views

Meaning of べた打ち

Does anybody know what べた打ち means, and what the kanji for べた could be? The context I heard it in was the upright playing style of taiko.
4
votes
1answer
128 views

What does “POP” mean in the context of charity/forms/information?

What does "POP" mean below? このたびのスペシャルイベントでも、オーディエンスのみなさんがサポートしたくなるようなプロジェクトについて、会場でPOPなどで紹介し、ドネイション(基金)を募りたいと考えています。 Also: 団体名と簡単な概要入りの共通POPはこちらで作ります。 Also: This PDF lists 共通POP一枚 as a ...
5
votes
2answers
302 views

I am wondering if someone can shed light on this tweet from Japan?

A friend of mine recently translated a Japanese article from Japan's October issue of An An magazine and sent her a tweet in English telling her that it was completed. The author replied with the ...
10
votes
1answer
479 views

How do 自他 triplets of related verbs work?

I thought this had been asked before (possibly by me), but I couldn't find it. I'm wondering why for certain verbs/words, instead of just a 自他 pair, there is a triplet (or possibly more) where two of ...
7
votes
1answer
428 views

Why does きいろ mean yellow rather than green?

I know that most of "why" questions don't make much sense as far as linguistics are concerned but I'll ask anyway. I know that き means a tree. いろ means color. It doesn't take a genius to guess that ...
4
votes
2answers
186 views

What does 工夫(する) mean?

I am aware of the generic English translation: In this case, "device" or "to devise" in English, but this does not really help me out. In what context would you use this word? 例文 would really be ...
-2
votes
1answer
219 views

What does おせわになってます mean?

あなたにいつもおせわになってますからね. What does the above sentence mean? I'm confused about the おせわになってます part.
-1
votes
1answer
196 views

Meaning of 伝わる and AよりもB, 温かい, and て-form+から+でも

I need help understanding some Japanese sentences. All the sentences are connected except the last one. 今も手紙はたまに書きますよ。 mailよりも気持ちが伝わるんです。 I know that the first sentence means "people also ...
13
votes
2answers
921 views

Meaning of ぬ added to 連用形 / masu-stem, as in 風立ちぬ

What does the ぬ at the end of 立ち specify? I can't find a verb that is just 立ちぬ, is this some kind of special form? Can this be done with other verbs as well? 風立ちぬ, for reference, is Miyazaki's new ...
4
votes
2answers
230 views

Meaning of 話になんない

I have a quote from this anime, FLCL: 「とにかくさ、バット振んなきゃ話になんないよ」. In the official translation it's translated as "nothing can happen until you swing the bat". Now my japanese is pretty rusty, as I ...
4
votes
2answers
359 views

Similar example sentences give different meanings

I was looking for the verb しゃべる in the dictionary, as it got me curious since I've only known 話す for a while. In the dictionary there are two example sentences which look the same, but the dictionary ...
2
votes
1answer
129 views

what does the とは mean in this phrase?

Hello pretty new to Japanese and I have a question. So I know this is supposed to be something like "he differs from his former self" but I can't really make sense of what the とは is supposed to mean ...
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vote
2answers
180 views

What does “自己修養” mean, in western terms?

I am looking for something that expresses the concept of self-cultivation, especially in the sense of "practicing self-cultivation through traditional japanese arts" (see also this book, which I don't ...
2
votes
1answer
629 views

How to say “I have class now”

When said in English, this sentence means that you have class in the near future, despite using now. Is it okay to omit から in the sentence below, or does that change the meaning? ...
5
votes
1answer
138 views

What kind of organisms can be covered by 益虫, 害虫 or 虫?

I came across someone describing a Nihon yamori / gekko as a 益虫, and using "useful insect" in English. Gekkos aren't insects, but it made me curious what it actually does mean. jisho.org only ...
2
votes
1answer
148 views

Is there a background to the phrase 「熊出来てる」?

I was watching a TV drama, and one line was: 「熊出来てる」 I would translate it as "seems like a bear is coming out". In context, it seems to refer to a person who has rings under their eyes, due to not ...
3
votes
2answers
170 views

Talking about people

first time asking a question on here. What is the difference in meaning between 人々、人物、人、人類、人間 and if you know any others it would be nice to include those too. How do you use them properly?
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vote
3answers
459 views

What does '今よ' mean?

What does 'よ' do when placed after a single noun like '今'? 今よ Would it be considered a question, like "Now?" ?
2
votes
2answers
142 views

What is the difference in usage of [実行]{じっこう}する and [実施]{じっし}する?

So at my office i see both [実施]{じっし}する and [実行]{じっこう}する used a lot to mean "carry out" a task. Any time I ask a Japanese person they tell me "they are the same". Can anyone tell me any differences ...
2
votes
0answers
54 views

Sake? Nihonshu? [duplicate]

Is it true that in normal conversation, "sake" means alcohol generically? Not sake specifically? And sake specifically is "nihonshu"? The story is, I learned some Japanese 40+ years ago in Australia. ...
2
votes
1answer
225 views

What does さすがお尻マイスター mean?

When one of my girlfriend asked her friend, if he is in Osaka now, he said "yes, that's right" (in japanese) and then "さすがお尻マイスター". I didn't understand it, but I didn't ask her or him back either. ...
3
votes
1answer
102 views

How is “しかい” used in this sentence?

I'm a bit confused about how "しかい" is used in this sentence I came across while studying: そこには私一人しかいなかった。 "I was the only one there." My guess is that it is an ending to "一人", but I couldn't find ...
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votes
1answer
133 views

Kanji for Hirohito [closed]

I cannot find the kanji for hito, as in the name Hirohito, in my Modern Reader's Japanese-English Character Dictionary (Andrew Nelson). When I searched online I found that the hito was shown as a four ...
3
votes
1answer
137 views

Meaning of vb-たかった + しまいました

I am currently in my third year of japanese studies, and in lesson 29 of 皆の日本語, we learned to use vb-て+しまいます or しまいました to emphasize the action or its completion, or the embarrassment, regret of the ...
1
vote
1answer
185 views

What does ピグ mean? (Not pig.)

I was reading http://helps.ameba.jp/faq/pigg/5301/post_362.html, and it said "ピグ", I can't for the life figure out for the life of me what it means (Unless it means pig, and contextually that makes no ...
3
votes
1answer
172 views

Meaning of どこの ( + noun)?

I found Shimazaki Touson's work 'shiawase', and read the first few lines: 「幸せ」が色々な家へたずねて行きました。だれでも幸せの欲しくないひとはありませんから、どこの家をたずねましても、みんな大喜びでむかえてくれるに違いありません。 My question is how I can translate ...
3
votes
1answer
137 views

What does 直打ち mean? also whats the reading?

Can someone help me understand this 直打ち, as used in the following sentence: URLを直打ちしてアクセスされた可能性があります。 (this is an error message in a log file) My dictionaries have no idea what this word means. As ...
5
votes
1answer
179 views

What are some translations for 後は無い?

Does it have a less literal meaning that "nothing left behind"?
5
votes
2answers
352 views

What does おめでとう煜ございます mean?

At first I thought it was a typo, but inserting the character 煜 into birthday wishes or the like seems to be common, e.g. おめでとう煜ございます おめでとうございます煜 おめでとう煜ございます煜 I have several problems: What ...
2
votes
1answer
191 views

Why use 分 in this question?

I have come across the following sentence : そのダンボ-ルゴミに出す分ですか? I understand it means something like "Are you throwing out this cardbox?". But what does 分 mean in this context and why is it at that ...
4
votes
1answer
137 views

Is this word slang? アメテ

I can't find a definition for this word アメテ. Aside from sounding like an amateur, the word didn't make sense in the context. In the context, a character was flipping out. The entire sentence he ...
3
votes
3answers
268 views

How can I translate けど in this sentence?

I don't get these sentences; the first one ends with けど (plus I don't get why there is the use of !? at the end) Here the sentences: 俺モデル! 顔命なの です けど!? んなに 硬くねーだろ> I know that けど ...
2
votes
1answer
173 views

What does 用なんてなくっても mean?

Would it happen to be something roughly like "Even if I'm not busy"?
7
votes
1answer
126 views

I can't find a translation for 言やいー

I would very much appreciate it if someone could tell me what 言やいー refers to. All I know is that 言 has something to do with speaking or words, but that alone doesn't help. Is it slang? The entire ...
2
votes
1answer
74 views

Use of ご and にね

In the following sentence, how are にね and ご used in that first clause. I'm baffled. They seem to have no meaning. で、そんなご身分にね、一年も経てばいよいよ引け目を感じますよ。 Thanks for your help.
3
votes
1answer
337 views

What's the meaning of とこに?

Pretty much I couldn't find this とこに in my dictionary so I was wondering what it means. Here the context to better understand: あんなとこにタオル落ちてる Also is あんな a slang for あのな? Thanks in advance c: I ...
1
vote
1answer
109 views

関わらず, こうして, and “Titles”

My question concerns the middle part of this sentence. 宮さんは、僕がこうして敬称付きで呼ぶにも関わらず、 見た目十代前半くらいの少女なのだった。 How exactly does こうして affect the meaning of the sentence? What part of the sentence is 関わらず ...
1
vote
1answer
101 views

What does やさぐれ mean?

I believe it has something to do with bullying. Also, I think I heard it as a verb: やさぐれる I can't seem to find much information about it. Is it slang?
1
vote
0answers
210 views

How do you be sarcastic in Japanese? [duplicate]

Especially in text, is there a clue in Japanese as to whether someone is being sarcastic, or is it as ambiguous as it is in English? And how do you form a sentence so as to make it obviously ...
1
vote
2answers
199 views

What does「散々人を待たせておいて最初の一言がそれか」mean?

I am unsure how to translate the following phrase: [散々]{さんざん}人{ひと}を待{ま}たせておいて最初{さいしょ}の一言{ひとこと}がそれか My guess as to how this phrase translates is: Is that the first thing people say to those ...
3
votes
1answer
254 views

What does 彼のままだった mean?

In the following phrase:「時{とき}が過{す}ぎても彼{かれ}のままだった。」what does the「彼{かれ}のままだった」part mean? My guess is that I can translate this phrase into something like "He's the same" or "he didn't change", but I'm ...
1
vote
0answers
156 views

キリンとゾウ:どっちが大きい? [closed]

My Japanese colleagues are having a heated debate about which animal is the most 大きい : giraffe or elephant? Both sides have their arguments (height/volume), so is it entirely a matter of personal ...
1
vote
1answer
522 views

What is the meaning of “beta”?

Can somebody please explain what "beta" means in the following sentence: Tsugi no mokutekichi wa beta da keredo, Shikago.
5
votes
2answers
415 views

What does ヘニャッ mean?

What does ヘニャッ mean in the following sentence? やっぱり甘えたいと思う時あいますよね。疲れている時とか、ヘニャッってなりたくなる 時。
2
votes
1answer
193 views

What does the 「っち」 in @「見守りっち」 translate into?

What does Verb in 「ます」form +「っち」 mean? What does the 「っち」 in @「見守りっち」 translate into?
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vote
2answers
313 views

What is the difference between 怖い and 恐い

As a follow-up to Would 私は怖い mean "I'm scared" or "I'm scary"? We know that 怖い can mean both "to be scared" and "to be scary to somebody". What about the difference ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

Would 私は怖い mean “I'm scared” or “I'm scary”?

Or does it mean both? If so, is there any way to explicitly distinguish between "I'm scared" and "I'm scary"? If it only means one and not the other, how would you say the other?
3
votes
1answer
347 views

What's the difference between どうして and どうやって?

I've read on Stack Exchange that どうやって can be used to mean "what did you do in order to x" どうやってお医者になったか? — What did you do in order to become a doctor? This definition makes a lot of sense to ...
5
votes
1answer
205 views

Why is topology called 位相幾何学?

Topology in English is called 位相幾何学 in Japanese; also, topological space is called 位相空間. But why is topology called 位相幾何学? What is the correspondence between topo and 位相? What is the origin of 位相?