A set of symbols and marks which are used to clarify meaning in text by separating strings of words into clauses, phrases and sentences.

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22
votes
2answers
331 views

When should either 「」 and 『』 be used?

In what scenarios would you use 「」 quotation marks instead of 『』, and vice versa?
17
votes
2answers
701 views

What does the nakaguro (・) between these two words mean?

The first sentence on the Mac OS X article on the Japanese version of Wikipedia reads: Mac OS X(マック オーエス テン)は、アップルが[開発]{かいはつ}・[販売]{はんばい}する、Macintoshコンピュータ[用]{よう}の[現行]{げんこう}オペレーティングシステム (OS) である。 ...
17
votes
2answers
2k views

Usage of commas in Japanese sentences

This might sound like a strange question, but how does the usage of commas differ when used in Japanese compared to English? I believe りんご、オレンジとバナナ wouldn't work, but that it's OK to list like ...
13
votes
1answer
495 views

Why are points used where furigana would be normally?

Sometimes in mangas there points where you would expect normally furigana. What meaning is it supposed to have?
12
votes
1answer
1k views

Use of the question mark and か

I was surpised to hear from a Japanese coworker that using a question mark "?" (gimonfu) after the か particle is correct Japanese. Which of these are NG? 何時に会いましょうか 何時に会いましょうか? 何時に会いましょう? In what ...
12
votes
1answer
343 views

What do the question marks on these gas station signs mean?

ハイオク: 148? レギュラ: 137? 軽油: 115? What meaning do the question marks have?
9
votes
1answer
329 views

What exactly is this ※ symbol, and what does it mean/how is it used?

I keep running into this symbol: ※ What is it, exactly? How is it used? According to this Wikipedia link on Japanese typographic symbols, this ※ is called 米{こめ} or 米印{こめじるし}. It is used in notes as ...
8
votes
2answers
204 views

Middle Dot (中黒) in Non-Japanese Names

My previous question about ellipses (三点リーダー) in Japanese got me thinking about the middle dot (中黒) in foreign names. When I was in college, I learned that if you have a non-Japanese (or, rather, ...
7
votes
1answer
422 views

Working with parentheses (English vs Japanese)

In English I could write, "Birds (various kinds)". In Japanese could I translate the version using parentheses as something like 鳥類(各種), or should the language/parentheses be used differently? I'm ...
6
votes
1answer
198 views

Subtitle symbol

My understanding is that a subtitle is expressed with the symbol 〜 in Japanese like this: Main Title ~ Subtitle Main Title ~Subtitle~ I am not sure about whether there is supposed to be a ...
6
votes
2answers
253 views

Can a 読点{とうてん} (“comma”) join two complete sentences?

Can 、 join two complete sentences? In other words, can 、 replace 。? I thought it could, but in this answer, user1205935 seems to suggest that it cannot. (Rather than ask about it in a comment, I ...
5
votes
1answer
86 views

Ellipsis Usage and Format

I'd like to ask about ellipses in Japanese. First, as I understand, ellipses in Japanese often indicate silence or trailing off at the end of a sentence in casual text communication and manga. I ...
4
votes
2answers
249 views

ダブルクォートと[鉤括弧]{かぎ・かっ・こ}の使い分けは?

日本語の文章では、引用符として、ダブルクォート(””)も鉤括弧(「」)も両方使用されているのを見たことがあります。もちろん、他の引用符も見たことがありますが、それはさておきます。 ダブルクォートは英文に引用符をつける時に使われているような気がしますが、この使い分けは正式に認められていますか?公文書などではダブルクォートも鉤括弧も使えますか?
4
votes
2answers
315 views

What does the うち in ならないうちに mean?

日本人には、見知らぬ人と会話を始めてまだくつろいだ気分にならないうちに、相手の、年齢や地位、既婚か未婚かなどの個人的な事柄を知りたがる傾向がある。 There is a tendency for Japanese to want to know a certain amount of personal information about someone such as age, ...
4
votes
1answer
156 views

Use of a comma to separate a single word

I brushed up on the use of Japanese commas (読点) here, but I don't think it explained this usage I found on 知恵袋. The sentence is this: 忙しい、の対義語に当たる形容詞は何でしょうか。 Why exactly is the OP using the comma ...
4
votes
0answers
152 views

What are these furigana (or punctuation marks)? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Do Japanese writers use underline for emphasis? What do the punctuation marks next to あだ and はるひ mean? I can type the sentences, or show the passage if it helps.
2
votes
3answers
179 views

When mixing Japanese and English, should I use Japanese parentheses? [closed]

Should I use Japanese or Western parentheses when inserting a Japanese word into a sentence parenthetically? For example, Japanese uses morae (モーラ) or Japanese uses morae (モーラ) Is ...
2
votes
1answer
114 views

Pronunciation of interpoint when listing items

話者の希望・意向を表す文や働きかけの文は来ない。 This is a case when interpoint (中黒) is used for listing like a conjunction. I wonder how would a native speaker pronounce such an expression? Simply きぼういこう きぼう (pause) いこう ...
2
votes
1answer
149 views

〜なければ、〜がきっといる。Do the tenses agree?

I saw this sentence in a train advertisement for a job placement agency: いまとサヨナラしなければ、出会えないあなたがきっといる。 I don't sense a future tense at all in the independent (latter) clause because the verb is ...
1
vote
2answers
165 views

What is this dash-like punctuation mark?

Here is a piece of text from 「ノルウェイの森」by Haruki Murakami: この寮の唯一の問題点はその根本的なうさん臭さにあった。寮はあるきわめて右翼的な人物を中心とする正体不明の財団法人によって運営されており、その運営方針は――もちろん僕の目から見ればということだが――かなり奇妙に歪んだものだった。 How are these things ...
0
votes
1answer
364 views

The forward slash (English vs Japanese)

In English it's common to list multiple items as item/item/item, with the / representing or. What about in Japanese? Do I keep the forward slash, or maybe 「・」 so it would be アイテム・アイテム・アイテム? ...