使い分け. The differences between two or more words or phrases and how to select the best one for a given situation.

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8
votes
1answer
2k views

How offensive is ぷっくりする?

I've read the definition of ぷっくりする in a dictionary, and it can basically describe someone who is chubby. As I have rarely seen this expression used, I'd like to know how (in)appropiate it is. Is ぷっくり ...
6
votes
2answers
175 views

「残業代」と「残業費」の違いを教えてください。

皆さん、お聞きしたいことがあります。 残業代と残業費のどちらが正しい言い方ですか。そのほかの言い方はありますか。 教えていただけますか。
6
votes
1answer
82 views

Difference between 柄 and 模様

I've tried to find the differences between 柄 and 模様 everywhere but to no avail. What are the differences between 柄 and 模様?
5
votes
2answers
148 views

How to use ~でも and ~も?

I have looked up 誰 in the dictionary, and found that both 誰も 誰でも can mean everyone and everybody. If there is a difference between them, what is the correct way to use each of them? It is not ...
0
votes
0answers
43 views

「全く知りません」と「全然知りません」違うこと [duplicate]

「全く知りません」と「全然知りません」違うことがありますか。 よろしくお願いします。
5
votes
1answer
150 views

Difference between ざまに and ながら

お姉ちゃんが振り向きざまにきっぱりと言い切った Big sister turned around and ?? clearly asserted... From the answer on this question about ざまに, I understand ざまに to mean "while". But in what way does it differ from ...
0
votes
1answer
70 views

Different word about Back and spine

I've seen many different words refering to back, spine like せ and せなか. So what is the right word and in which case?
4
votes
2answers
124 views

敬語 with and without ~になる

When asking someone politely to, for example, look at something, you can say both ご覧になっていただけますか following the standard 敬語, but you can also say ご覧いただけますか. Is there any particular difference between ...
4
votes
3answers
185 views

Difference between onyomi words and kunyomi words

I think the more I read up on complicated topics the more I encounter onyomi words that have kunyomi synonyms. For example: 新しいvs新規 最新 終わりvs終了 危ないvs危険 Is the rule generally that onyomi words are ...
4
votes
2answers
221 views

Is there a difference between 'futari' and 'futari-domo'?

What is the difference between 'futari' and 'futari-domo'? Also, is 二人共 the correct way to write 'futari-domo'?
13
votes
2answers
1k views

How impolite is it to call a waitress お姉{ねえ}さん?

Were I in a situation where I want to get the attention of a waitress in a noisy restaurant, I kind of feel like calling-out: "お姉{ねえ}さん、すみませんが、ビールもう一本お願いできますか?". I think that I've seen this done in a ...
11
votes
3answers
404 views

The difference between 超{こ}える, 越{こ}える and 過{す}ぎる

超{こ}える, 越{こ}える and 過{す}ぎる are said to mean "to pass through" in the "edict" dictionary, but I don't fully understand the difference between the three. How does their usage differ please? Can anyone ...
5
votes
2answers
110 views

Does 私の名前はXYZです sound natural?

Consider the following sentence: [私]{わたし}の[名前]{なまえ}はライノーです。 watashi-no namae-wa rhino desu. Would a native speaker use this form, as opposed to ”[私]{わたし}はライノーです” or ”[名前]{なまえ}ライノーです”? An ...
6
votes
1answer
78 views

Why does native speakers rather say 言う通り not 言った通り?

I was watching a drama (無痛 ep.3) when a short sentence baffled me. The main actor's wife was taking her last breaths, thanking her husband, who himself a doctor, told her, that it would be best to die ...
5
votes
1answer
170 views

Is there something wrong with this sentence? 暑いから水を飲みました。

I was watching this video explaining から. In it (at :08 and again at 2:29), the instructor shows a scene where he is drinking water, and says ”暑いから水を飲みました。”, then a buzzer noise and a big red X shows ...
2
votes
1answer
66 views

What is the Japanese phrase to convey the meaning of “to declare attendance”?

We as employees of a relatively big company are often prompted to log on to and log out from by wiping our fingers on a bio-metric scanner, for example, to declare our attendance. Shortly speaking, ...
6
votes
3answers
597 views

Difference between the words for “living/residing” [住む/棲む/泊まる/暮らす]

I have come across various words meaning "living/residing". What are the differences between them and their usage? I've listed what I think are the differences. Are they correct? 住む: Live in some ...
6
votes
1answer
104 views

A question about 直る and 修理

I am trying to say something like: Could you tell me where I could get my glasses repaired ? My first try was to use 直れる (potential form of 直る) to say something like 直れるところ place where ...
4
votes
1answer
78 views

Plural reflexives: among themselves

Suppose there are two groups/teams A and B within the same conversational space, and I'm in group A. How would I say: "they (group B) discussed among themselves" (as opposed to discussing with ...
6
votes
2answers
71 views

「〜といいます」 vs 「〜というものです」 when introducing oneself

When introducing one's name, I have seen both of the following constructs used. 〜といいます。 〜というものです。 Is there a difference between them? I get the hunch that the latter is perhaps more formal ...
8
votes
4answers
193 views

What's the difference between 勇ましい, 勇気, and 勇敢?

In English-Japanese dictionaries, they are all defined along the lines of "brave" or "courageous". Japanese dictionaries describe all of them more or less as "not fearing danger", using a phrase ...
8
votes
2answers
294 views

Difference between 「~のない~」 and 「~がない~」?

For example, plugging these into Google, I can find stuff like, 自信のない人 and 自信がない人. Or, 愛のない生活 and 愛がない生活. I found a movie called 顔のないスパイ. How is this any different from 顔がないスパイ? I've asked ...
1
vote
3answers
118 views

願いは叶う or 願いが叶います?

Reading a raw manga and 願いは叶う was the chapter name which I think is "Wishes Come True" however after checking online "Wishes Come True" is apparently 願いが叶います, there is 2 differences, one being は and が ...
5
votes
3answers
108 views

Difference between ときがある and ことがある

Someone just asked me the difference between 「ことがある」(when it means "there are times when") and 「ときがある」, and I actually couldn't answer since I have never really thought about this... Could someone ...
2
votes
1answer
538 views

What is the difference in terms of grammar between ~かける and ~っぱなし?

Spawned from What is the difference in terms of grammar between きり and っぱなし?; I started thinking about ~かける. Don't these essentially mean the same thing? I'm failing to see any difference except ...
2
votes
1answer
111 views

How can I frame this ダジャレ to sound funny?

As Jerry Seinfeld says: "Jokes that require an explanation are never funny." So, I want to do a wordplay on the pronunciation of 紐 = 日も. I've delivered it as such: typical set-up: ...
4
votes
1answer
61 views

~としたら What is the purpose in this context?

たとえばさえりさんの頭が10ヶ月ずっと痛かったとしたら、それが通常になると思いますか? From this article: http://liginc.co.jp/241030 Why does he opt to use ずっと痛かったとしたら rather than simply ずっと痛かったら What is the nuance being communicated in ...
-1
votes
2answers
77 views

Is 日 “hi” or “ni”? [duplicate]

日 is at the start of "Nihon" (Japan) making me think it means "Ni" but 日 means Day which is written in romaji as "hi" and pronounced "hi". If 日 has multiple meanings how am I supposed to read it?
2
votes
2answers
569 views

What is the difference between Oyasumi and Oyasuminasai?

Why are these 2 words different? Google Translate says they mean the same thing. When would each be used?
1
vote
2answers
129 views

How do I say “cat”? And do I use kanji, hiragana, katakana or rōmaji?

猫, ねこ, ネコ, neko Which of these means "cat"? Is it all of them? Which situation do I use each of these in?
6
votes
2answers
127 views

The different nuances of wanting to go to do something

I have been wondering about the different nuances each of the following sentences carries. Maybe I am trying to interpret too much into these, but I am really curious about the slight difference it ...
10
votes
2answers
448 views

What's the difference in usage and nuance between やはり and やっぱり?

I know that we say にっぽん instead of にほん when we want to inject a little national pride into the word, but I've never had a good understanding of the difference in meaning/nuance/usage between やはり and ...
12
votes
2answers
260 views

Change in self-address for emphasis or to express frustration or dissatisfaction

Building on from this comment, It is possible that in English, a mother may opt to refer to herself in the third person: using "Your mother" instead of "I" to create emphasis. It is observed from ...
6
votes
2answers
343 views

What does 「つっぱしり」mean in this context?

I recently heard about a manga entitled つっぱしり元太郎, and I'm slightly confused about the meaning of the 「つっぱしり」 in its name. I've looked the word up in several dictionaries, but have gotten no results. ...
6
votes
1answer
273 views

類 in animal and plant names

It seems that there are a number of animal and plant names that can either be used with or without 類 as a suffix. For example, in case of 'fish', I have seen both 魚類 and 魚 being used to denote the ...
5
votes
1answer
48 views

Difference between てぶくろ and グローブ

According to jisho.org, グローブ seems to have a "sports" nuance to it, wherease 手袋{てぶくろ} seems to be more general. Is this accurate?
11
votes
2answers
975 views

Differences between the many words for dinner

According to my dictionary, the following words all mean the same thing: "Dinner": [夜]{よる}ご[飯]{はん}, [晩]{ばん}ご[飯]{はん}, [晩飯]{ばんめし}, [晩食]{ばんしょく}, [夕]{ゆう}ご[飯]{はん}, [夕飯]{ゆうはん(ゆうめし)}, [夕食]{ゆうしょく} A similar ...
7
votes
2answers
174 views

Most appropriate word for 'antonym' – 対義語 or 反対語?

I just created an antonyms tag on our site. We usually make tag names in English, and then put the Japanese equivalent in the tag description, but I'm not sure which Japanese word to use. Wikipedia ...
10
votes
2answers
915 views

The various ways of saying “all”

While trying to write a plugin to (unofficially fan-)translate this website to Japanese, I've been noticing that "all" has multiple different translations. What exactly is the difference between ...
5
votes
3answers
612 views
8
votes
1answer
178 views

Differences and similarities between 係 and 担当

I have some questions about the difference between 係 and 担当. Do these words have the same meaning? Basically, can they be used interchangeably as "the person/group in charge of something"? I know ...
7
votes
1answer
105 views

What is the nuance of お人好し vs いい人?

I'm reading the manga 僕だけがいない街 where the following is thought about a character who is kind towards the protagonist: 相変わらず{あいかわらず}お人好し{おひとよし}。。。いやいい人{ひと}だ。 The implication is that the guy is a ...
15
votes
2answers
384 views

What's the difference in usage between 氏名 (しめい) and 名前 (なまえ)?

What's the difference in usage between 氏名 (しめい) and 名前 (なまえ)? I often see these two words used interchangeably, but more often than not I see 氏名 on websites. Is this a politeness difference or an ...
13
votes
7answers
817 views

What is the real difference between the proper use of the words さむい and つめたい?

In English it seems that cold is just always cold just as warm and hot regardless of whether the word describes a person's experience or the actual physical state of an object. In Japanese however ...
13
votes
2answers
849 views

Adjectives functioning both as イ- and ナ-adjective

This question has made me think about the class of adjectives, which can function both as イ- and as ナ-adjective, e.g. 大きい 大きな 小さい 小さな 真っ白い 真っ白な (etc.) 細かい 細かな 暖かい 暖かな 四角い 四角な (etc.) 柔らかい ...
7
votes
2answers
272 views

What is the difference between 乗り場 and バス停?

I've seen them both with the meaning of 'Bus Stop.' Could someone please explain how they're different? Thank you in advance!
5
votes
1answer
263 views

What is the difference between all the words for tools / devices?

There is too many words for 'tool' that I am having hard time figuring out when to use which, or if some of them are just synonyms, meaning essentially the same thing. So far I know at least the ...
3
votes
1answer
112 views

Are there any differences between 仕事 and 作業

I have ran across these two words being used in some articles and blog sites. It seems they both translate to "work", but when and why would you use one over the other?
7
votes
1answer
217 views

What may be the difference in the usage of 自尊心, 誇り and 自慢?

I read a paragraph and it contains the word 自尊心. I want to know the meaning of 自尊心. Dictionary says 自尊心 = pride. Is it the same with 誇り? or 自慢? What may be the differences in the usage of these ...
3
votes
1answer
100 views

Difference between “現住所” and “連絡先” on Japanese resume?

"現住所" and "連絡先" are 2 fields on a Japanese resume. If both are the same address, do you: delete the "現住所" and just list the "連絡先"? delete the "連絡先" field and just list your "現住所"? Or, are there ...