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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3
votes
2answers
135 views

What's the difference between 体育 and スポーツ?

This may be my Chinese getting in the way of my Japanese again, but doesn't 体育 and スポーツ both mean "sport"? What are the differences between them, and when is one used over the other?
4
votes
2answers
127 views

Difference between using -ba or -ra form and と for conditionals?

Is there some nuance between using each one? For example: Could I use と in place of -ba form in 電気を消せば暗くなる。 or in place of -ra form in 電気を消したら暗くなる。 like this: 電気を消すと暗くなる。 ?
3
votes
2answers
151 views

Can I use といいですね in this situation? “I hope you haven't fallen ill again”

退院して以来、健康問題がなかったといいですね。 I hope you haven't had any problems since you got out of hospital.
6
votes
1answer
105 views

Is there any practical difference between しばらく and しばらくの間?

While answering How does しばらく work with ていない? I started to wonder if 暫く{しばらく} and 暫く{しばらく}の間{あいだ} were fully interchangeable? Or are there any examples where you would use one and not the other?
4
votes
1answer
84 views

実践 and 実戦 in exercises

I've seen both 実践 and 実戦 used in the context of practice questions, both pronounced じっせん, of course. 実践問題 seems to be the more common of the two, meaning a practice exercise, but I've recently come ...
2
votes
1answer
8k views

What is a word meaning “to ask”?

I've needed to use a word "to ask" recently, and the word I decided on was [尋]{たず}ねる. But I have strong doubts that this is actually the right word to use in a situation such as this: I would like ...
-2
votes
1answer
171 views

No versus not in Japanese [closed]

Is there a difference between no versus not in japanese, or is it just always いいえ?
2
votes
1answer
91 views

Difference between 事業, 企業, and 会社?

They all translate to the same thing: business, enterprise, etc. Most sentences I've found online seem to use them interchangeably (at least, as far as I can tell), and they are all very common words. ...
7
votes
3answers
164 views

What is the difference between 殺{さつ}人{じん} and 殺{さつ}害{がい}?

What is the difference between 殺人 and 殺害? As I know, both of them mean "killing". I found the words in these sentences: 秋田運転手刺殺事件、男を逮捕 強盗殺人容疑で。 金品を奪い取る目的で殺害した疑い。
4
votes
2answers
627 views

How to create 'although' sentences in Japanese

I know there are different ways to get the sense of 'although..., but...' in a sentence. Too many ways for me to be clear about how to express it at all, to be honest. In Chinese it's as simple as can ...
3
votes
0answers
41 views

電話する and 電話をかける [duplicate]

From what I have seen, they are both used to say " to call someone" by phone, but I was wondering if there was a difference between the two. Is one more formal? Is there a nuance in meaning? Are ...
55
votes
10answers
3k views

How should I choose between [知]{し}る and わかる?

Both 知る and わかる get used for "know", "understand", "learn", "find out", and various other concepts. How do you know which to use when? Are there any rules to help you decide? Additionally, both of ...
6
votes
1answer
160 views

“人物” vs. “性格” vs. “人柄”?

With regard to talking about one's "personality", such as one being out-going, stoic, cold, not trustworthy, etc. I've always said "人柄{ひとがら}". And, the natives seem to basically understand what I mean....
3
votes
1answer
102 views

Using 旨 where こと could be used a well

Often in a business setting I hear Japanese speakers using この旨 where この事 seemingly fits as well. Like 「この旨をご連絡させて頂きます」 or 「〇〇の旨かしこまりました」 Is it just a matter of corporate speak or is there a ...
7
votes
2answers
245 views

自分 and 自身, what's the difference

I am having some trouble telling the difference between the two. Don't they both mean "myself"? And so does 私自身, right? I don't get the difference, when you would you use any of them and how to choose....
-2
votes
1answer
157 views

Nuance of 君のこと in 君のこと知りたい [closed]

this is kind of an embarrassing thing for me to post here, but hopefully I'll come to find out it's not an issue at all! So recently I've become close with a Japanese friend because we've gotten along ...
1
vote
1answer
182 views

How do you indicate sections in a report if there are more than 5? (まず、つぎに、さらに、そして、最後に)

If you need to indicate more sections in a report than five (beginning each section with 「まず」、「つぎに」、「さらに」、「そして」、「最後に」 respectively), what word(s) should you use to indicate the start of the additional ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

The difference between 面会 and 対面

I heard Japanese speaker correcting himself from 面会 to 対面. Edit: The actual phrase was 「二人が 面会 対面をした時に・・・」 He was referring to a meeting of two people one-on-one in a casual setting, but still ...
7
votes
1answer
146 views

Difference between 俺物語 and 俺の物語

There is an anime/manga called 俺物語!! which is translated as "My Story!!" or "My Love Story!!" depending on which site you visit. The way I have learned it, it should be "俺の物語" to be "my story" ...
4
votes
2answers
84 views

Can I use 罪を着せる to describe actions before a crime was committed?

There is a phrase 罪を着せる translated (J-to-E) as "charge someone with a crime", "pin a crime to someone", "assign guilt to someone". So a crime has been committed and one takes actions to attribute ...
5
votes
1answer
91 views

What's the difference between 段階 and 階段?

I've seen both of these words used on television programs, but as far as I can tell they both mean "level"/"steps". Is the word order interchangeable here or do they mean different things? A search ...
2
votes
1answer
98 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? ...
3
votes
1answer
163 views

を vs で in these sentences

Can't understand Kanji, so please use furigana in answers :) Context: I'm using Rosetta stone, so there's just pictures. The picture accompanying the first sentence is a girl sleeping on a beach, ...
2
votes
2answers
159 views

conditionals: “…といったら、…” vs. “…というなら、…”?

(1)「元気そうだと田中さんがいったら、信用できる証拠と思う。」 (2) 「元気そうだと田中さんがいうなら、信用できる証拠と思う。」 Are both grammatically correct? Were I to want to say: If Tanaka-san were to say that X appears to be in good health, ...
2
votes
2answers
430 views

What is the correct 'to wear' verb for body weights?

In attempting to write about wearing ankle weights for the day, I found myself at a loss for which verb was appropriate. 巻く seems like it could be appropriate since they wrap around the ankle - in ...
6
votes
2answers
763 views

Asking a question with “da” and “datta”

We use "desu" and "deshita" to make the polite form and "ka" to make it a question, for example: Tokyo ga suki desu ka? (Do you like Tokyo?) Tokyo ga suki deshita ka? (Did you like Tokyo?) How can ...
0
votes
1answer
55 views

Do both “どっかの男” and “ある男” equally effect an indefinite article kind of meaning?

There is no context for these sentences: (1) ある男と自己紹介するために、夜明けに家を出かけた。 (2) どっかの男と自己紹介するために、夜明けに家を出かけた。 both best translate to: I left my house at daybreak to introduce myself to a man. ...
4
votes
1answer
300 views

必要{ひつよう} vs 要{い}ります

It should be mentioned I can't read kanji, so please keep that in mind when answering I've just encountered the verb [必要]{ひつよう}, in the Rosetta Stone sentence [私]{わたし}はチケットを[二枚]{にまい}[買]{か}...
5
votes
2answers
125 views

The Kanji for ありがとうございます

有難う御座います is one Kanji spelling. However, I thought, 'is ございます here an auxilliary verb, and thus are the Kanji incorrect?' Should the proper spelling be 有難うございます?
6
votes
1answer
133 views

Difference between 少し{すこし} and 少ない{すくない}

I know 少し{すこし} and 少ない{すくない} both as 'few', but what's the difference?
2
votes
1answer
62 views

Difference between “地主” and “家主”, and their relationship with 不動産屋?

I just learned a new word, "地主{じぬし}, whose definition in my web dictionary, and paper dictionary, is landlord, land owner. "家主{やぬし}" is surely the word that native English speakers would use for ...
2
votes
2answers
127 views

Are ”見やる“ and ”見すえる" near perfect antonyms?

My understanding is that "見やる" means "to cast a casual glance at." So, I'd think that these sentences are synonymous?: 空を見やった。 空を無頓着に見た。 "見すえる" is "to intensely stare at something". Thus, ...
2
votes
3answers
183 views

時代 and 時 difference

Is there any difference between, say, 子供の時 and 子どもの時代?
2
votes
1answer
59 views

How to translate まさか with this context- disbelief or surprise?

For some background: MC asked his girlfriend questions about wedding arrangements without specifying who the wedding is for (he's arranging his cousin's). Later, MC realises his girlfriend thought the ...
1
vote
1answer
103 views

What kind of ~~~ is it?

In English, there's an expression, 'What kind of ~~~ is/am/are he/she/it/they/you/I?' used as a rhetorical question meaning the thing in question is not a very good example of a ~~~. I'd like to know ...
1
vote
1answer
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 ...
1
vote
1answer
68 views

こいつ そいつ あいつ vs こやつ そやつ あやつ

I know they're all connected to 奴, but what's the difference? Are the forms in ~やつ more old-fashioned?
4
votes
2answers
115 views

The word いや - gender?

I've been told that いや (in its use similar to いいえ) is a mainly masculine word, but I've heard many female speakers use it, both as a filler and a content word expressing disagreement. Is it that young ...
2
votes
1answer
75 views

What is the difference between に限って and だけ?

Both に限って and だけ seem to be used with the meaning of "only". For instance, both phrases seem to have the same meaning: このスーパーは土曜日だけ配達する。 このスーパーは土曜日に限って配達する。 Is there any difference ...
0
votes
2answers
166 views

How do I know if kanjis side by side like the one in this sentence is a name 美鶴木夜石は怖がらない?

美鶴木{みつるぎ}夜石{よいし}は怖がらない Is the notion that Kanjis one after another typically indicate that it is a name? How does one read it if the furigana was not given when there are multiple pronunciation of ...
4
votes
1answer
118 views

What is the semantic difference between 積む{つむ} and 載せる{のせる} when loading stuff

My flashcard deck has 2 very similar cards: 積む{つむ} meaning: to load, pile up jisho.org: to pile up; to stack 載せる{のせる} meaning: to place on, load onto, draufstellen jisho.org: to place on (...
2
votes
2answers
91 views

Is there a difference between 費用 and 支出?

Both of these words appeared on my N3 flashcards, and they both can translate to cost or expense according to dictionaries. Example sentences had a tendency to translate 費用 as "cost" and 支出 as "...
2
votes
1answer
94 views

必要だ 必要とする 必要がある 要る - difference

They all seem to mean 'need'. Do some sound stronger than the others? Are all of the following sentences grammatical, and if not which ones are? お金が要る。 お金が必要だ。 お金を必要としている。 お金の必要がある。
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Younger uncles and aunts

If you are older than your uncle or aunt, do you still address them as 叔母さん or 叔父さん? I see no reason why you wouldn't, but I recall once seeing a description saying that family titles are only used ...
1
vote
2answers
511 views

What to say if you want to comfort your superior who is sick?

Usually, some Japanese in our company say to us 気をつけてください but in that case they are the superior. Now one of our superior is sick and we want to comfort him like "please take care of yourself and get ...
3
votes
1answer
74 views

であるので and であるのだ vs なので and なのだ

In these pairs, are the ones containg である simply more formal? I think I've seen both in writing.
5
votes
2answers
437 views

How to compare the ages of people in Japanese?

This is probably a simple question but something I've seemingly never considered while studying Japanese, but how would one compare ages of people in Japanese? For example if I wanted to say "I'm two ...
5
votes
1answer
126 views

What's the difference between 早い and 早め?

On Lang-8, for 'early birthday present' I used 早い誕生日プレゼント but this was corrected to 早めの誕生日プレゼント What's the difference between 早い and 早め?
2
votes
2answers
107 views

What is the word to convey the same meaning as the replacement money?

Consider the following scenario. I go to a shop and buy many electronic components using my own money. Later, the company will give me money with the same amount as a replacement. What is the ...