言葉. Any question that does not deal specifically with grammar or pronunciation. Includes questions about prefixes, suffixes, compound words, loanwords, dialectal differences, pragmatic usage, etc. In other words, phenomena that occurs at the level of the word.

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179 views

Does 被【かぶ】る have any relation to “cover”?

Topic. I've heard/seen somewhere that 被【かぶ】る was "gairaigo-fied" (?) from the English word "cover" (similar to ダブる or デモる), and then presumably given ateji from 被【おお】う since the meanings overlap so ...
4
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1answer
255 views

食べやすい and 食べにくい

I'm wondering what does 食べやすい mean exactly? "easily-eaten" doesn't seem to make any sense at all.. Does 食べやすい mean that something is soft and easy to swallow, or does it mean that something tastes ...
4
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1answer
170 views

Can 差す be an intransitive verb?

WWWJDIC lists 差す as an intransitive verb, but in all of the example sentences I've seen it looks more like a transitive verb. So my question is, is 差す a transitive or intransitive verb?
4
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1answer
144 views

Why is there a small ッ in 完ッ全?

I found this sentence on Jisho.org recently: どーすんの、このお店{みせ}!完{かん}ッ全{ぜん}に閑古鳥{かんこどり}が鳴{な}いちゃってるじゃない。 What happened to this place?! It's completely dead! I am baffled as to why there is a small ッ ...
4
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1answer
99 views

Can わざわざ or わざと be used for oneself?

I want to say "Even though I didn't have time, I went out of my way to..." (not a dialogue, just an essay reflecting on my stupidity). 時間がなかったのに、わざと... (In case this is a silly question: I just ...
4
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1answer
576 views

Can I explain the idea behind a Velcro tape using the name of these plant seeds? (photo)

Introduction: Long time ago, when I had no idea Velcro tape was called マジックテープ in Japanese I tried to suggest using it to my Japanese colleague. He had no idea about the word "Velcro", so I tried an ...
4
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1answer
348 views

Kanji or kana in お待ちください

It's considered proper (though often ignored) to write ください in 待ってください and 下さい in 赤いのを下さい, i.e. Kanji as a main verb and kana as an auxilliary. But a thought came into my mind: in お待ちください, is it an ...
4
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2answers
150 views

What is the Japanese term for putting an arm around another's shoulder?

What is the Japanese term for putting an arm around another's shoulder? it is kind of hard, at first I am thinking of 抱きしめる but I think it is more about embracing someone (tightly). Thank you for the ...
4
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1answer
713 views

What does the word 「とまあ」mean?

It is said by a boy who has just finished talking about his plan to a group of little kids. Here is the sentence. とまあ ざっとこんなところだが どうだみんな!
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1answer
1k views

What is the most common word in Japanese?

What is the most common word in Japanese?
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2answers
879 views

What does 春夏冬 mean?

So, I was watching an anime, whereupon I found the following text (cf. screencap): 夜ト・春夏冬中 090-xxxx-##3x どんなお悩みも解決いたします! This text appears in the context of the character 夜ト trying to find ...
4
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2answers
216 views

What is 坊 in 朝寝坊する?

I always thought that 坊 in 朝寝坊する was a bit weird. At least in Chinese, 坊 means "small factory". Thus I assumed it was a pun about "went to work at the morning sleeping factory" though it seems a bit ...
4
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1answer
355 views

How do I express “to survive” in a more metaphorical sense?

My friend published a multi-part video on Facebook. I wanted to comment "I survived for only one episode", as in "It was so bad I couldn't keep watching after just one episode", but I wasn't sure ...
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3answers
281 views

'Hearty' in Japanese

How would one say 'hearty' in Japanese? As in hearty meal, for example.
4
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1answer
112 views

What is the etymology of がらんと?

What is the etymology of がらんと, an adverb meaning empty or deserted?
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2answers
562 views

What is the difference between いろいろ and もろもろ

Both mean 'various, all sorts of', but is there some subtle difference or not?
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2answers
841 views

How to use とりあえず in sentences

I am struggling to understand the word "とりあえず". It seems to mean 'as it stands'. Here is an example sentence as I understand it: とりあえず計画がありません 'as it stands we have no plans' Is this correct? ...
4
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1answer
180 views

How to say “spoil”

For example He spoiled the joke by putting the punchline in the title. or I haven't finished watching it so don't spoil the plot! All I can find in the dictionary for "spoil" is of food/...
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2answers
101 views

What's the difference between [歓喜]{かん・き} and [喜悦]{き・えつ}?

From the definitions and examples I've seen, it seems that 喜悦 focuses more on the emotion of joy/happiness, and 歓喜 focuses more on the experience of the joy. Or am I looking too far into it?
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2answers
99 views

Difference between ために、せいで、おかげで when blaming someone

I was reading and found the following sentence: あんたのために殺し屋の地位を失い闇の世界で迫害され身も心もズタボロになった。 Previous the same character used おかげで in a similar case: ま...おかげでたっぷりとあの時やられたお返しができるってワケだ。 ...
4
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1answer
229 views

Japanese for submarine sandwich

Does Japanese have a commonly used term for submarine sandwich/roll? Australian English doesn't have a term AFAIK (the only places that sell such things in Australia are the Subway franchise), and I ...
4
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3answers
306 views

Meaning of 「これはこれで」, and the difference between it and 「それはそれとして」

I came across the following lines. ・・・俺としては、下駄箱の中に手紙が入っているみたいなほうが好みだった。でもこれはこれで、少なくとも相手が積極的だってことはわかる。 I am wondering about the meaning of 「これはこれで」 here. As one might expect, it does not have any ...
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1answer
64 views

分 in 今回は単行本第三巻予定分から

I'm trying to translate somebody's tweet, and I'm just blocking on this one bit. I understand every part ("単行本", "第三巻", "予定", "から"), except the "分", of course. I know what the kanji "分" means ...
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1answer
91 views

What does がんばっぺ mean?

Today I got a mail from my company but I am unable to figure out the meaning of がんばっぺ!!. The sentence is as follows- 下期も 製図勉強会や(秘)レクレーション大会などを 予定しております。 水戸のみなさん、一緒にがんばっぺ!! Is it similar ...
4
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1answer
96 views

“on a scale of 1 to 10”?

How can I say "on a scale of 1 to 10"? Like for example, "On a scale of 1 to 10 where 1 is not annoying at all and 10 is too annoying, how annoying do you find X"?
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2answers
2k views

What does とくと mean?

At one point in a particular work of fiction, a character announces 我が力、とくとご覧あれ! As I understand, it means 'Behold my power!' But I don't know what とくと means. I would guess it's archaic, since the ...
4
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1answer
128 views

Difference between 彫る【ほる】 (horu) and 刻む【きざむ】 (kizamu)

As I see it right now they both mean: to carve;  to engrave, to chisel;  to notch. Is there any difference between them?
4
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1answer
253 views

Why is China ちゅうごく while Korea is かんこく? Why the difference between ご and こ?

If my textbook didn't get it wrong, then China is ちゅうごく while Korea is かんこく. I checked the dictionary and 國 is certainly written as こく. So why is it ごく in China's case?
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1answer
130 views

What is 林家パー子ばり?

What is 林家パー子ばり? A colleague used it in a complex context, but I have found many another occurrences, including this one in the very simple context of a self-presentation: おもしろそうな場面には必ずカメラを持って「...
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1answer
97 views

'Get on' a road

In English, when giving directions, there are two possible constructions you can use when telling someone which road to use for a given segment of the trip: 'take', which refers to the entire ...
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3answers
428 views

Differences between 死ぬ{しぬ}, 他界する{たかいする} and 亡くなる{なくなる}?

What are the differences between 死ぬ{しぬ}, 他界する{たかいする} and 亡くなる{なくなる}?
4
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1answer
224 views

Are the expressions 桜咲くand 桜散る only used for exams?

Those expressions mean respectively to pass and to fail an exam. I have the feeling that those expressions convey something that is not in the neutral verbs to pass and to fail. That is to say that 桜{...
4
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1answer
100 views

Is there any difference between 講義 and 講演?

According to my dictionary both of them mean "lecture". But is there any difference between them in nuance?
4
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1answer
293 views

How is の方 used in this sentence?

This is a conversation between two people: A: [金]{かね}は? B: いつもの[通]{とお}りだ。それより[公安]{こうあん}の[方]{ほう}は? A: 心配するな。 私がついている。 A: The money? B: Planned as always. Aside from that, public safety の方は? A: Don'...
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1answer
589 views

How to call a wait pointer in Japanese?

In Japanese, how to call a wait pointer? I am talking about a computer mouse pointer which becomes a spinning wheel or hourglass (depending on the OS) when the application is busy processing ...
4
votes
1answer
911 views

Why is 自分 used instead of 私?

For example: 自分の名前が呼ばれたとき、私は自分の耳を疑った。I couldn't believe my ears when I heard my name called. Would it be appropriate if I said 私? When is it appropriate to use 自分? What is the difference?
4
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1answer
187 views

Is メリー mainly used in the set phrase メリークリスマス?

Is the gairaigo メリー mainly used in the set phrase メリークリスマス (Merry Christmas!) or can it be used without the クリスマス to mean "merry", such as 私はメリーです to say "I am feeling merry"? There's also メリーゴーランド (...
4
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1answer
99 views

The difference between 「人文科学」 and 「社会科学」

I want to know the different between these two words. The meaning is the same which is social science. So, what is the difference? Edit: Sorry for confusing question. I mean the different usage.
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2answers
181 views

Are there names like ワンコイン for the other coins?

So ワンコイン refers to a 500円 coin, but is there other names for the other coins? Also in conversation does ワンコイン refer to any specific currency or only to 500 yen (as in the sense of being a default).
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2answers
140 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 ...
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1answer
95 views

ば ほど with 2 different verbs; 気持ちの持ちよう

作業と思わなければ動けなくなるほど切迫していたが、とにもかくにも精神的なダメージは負わなくなった。 だが、これだけは気持ちの持ちようなどでは耐えられない。 She is pressured by the fact that the more she does not think about this as a job, the more she becomes unable to ...
4
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1answer
100 views

The difference between するには and する為には

The one answer I have really found says there is no semantic difference. Is there a formality difference? Is する為には more formal than するには?
4
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1answer
61 views

What's the meaning of 角刈り in this context?

I came across this sentence: 冗談はその角刈りだけにしてくださいよ (Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1e-WwxCZ3w) From the context, I reckon it means "Please don't joke /Give me a break", but I'm stumped by ...
4
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1answer
66 views

How is “と” being used in these two sentences?

I think "と" is being used differently in both of these sentences. However, I'm not entirely sure if it is being used as a particle in either one. Can you please explain to me the purpose of "と" in ...
4
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1answer
107 views

Usage of 東西南北 and 春夏秋冬?

I realize 東西南北 means all 4 directions (East, West, South and North) and 春夏秋冬 means all 4 seasons (Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter), but when should these words be used? I can imagine there might be ...
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2answers
418 views

What does シャリン mean here?

So, I have this sentence: 身動きすると、シャリンと涼やかな音が鳴り響く。 And I have no idea what シャリン is doing here. As far as I can tell, it's modifying 音, sound, but the only word "シャリン" that I've been able to find is ...
4
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1answer
119 views

Japanese for “Chinese Opera”

What is the Japanese for Chinese Opera? The Japanese language Wikipedia article on Chinese opera is titled 戯曲 (中国), with "中国" merely being disambiguation metadata. 戯曲 apparently means drama, with no ...
4
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2answers
783 views

How do you say “after all”, in the sense of reaffirming or justifying a previous statement?

For example: "You should wear a jacket. After all, it's snowing out there." "Of course I bought you a present! It's our anniversary after all." I tried an online dictionary but they gave me a lot ...
4
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1answer
486 views

Repetitive words (e.g. どんどん, ぺらぺら, いらいら…)

This is one area that sometimes dings me on tests. While I can generally figure out what is meant from context, I only know a handful offhand. The question here is twofold: Is there a specific ...
4
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1answer
158 views

Are 短(い) and 身近(い・な) related?

Is one derived from the other? 身近 means - amongst other definitions - "close/near to one(self)", so it's not that much of a leap to say that something near to you is a "short" distance away, and get ...