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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4
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2answers
251 views

Why might this device have both 原稿面上向き and 送信面上向き as equivalents of “face up”?

Recently, I found the following instructions on a multifunction printer/scanner/copier/faxer: Curiously, there are two lines in Japanese (as opposed to just one in each of the other languages): ...
5
votes
1answer
482 views

What's that accordion style book you can get at shrines called?

When visiting shrines or temples, one can get an accordion style book and for a couple hundred yen have a shrine's seal stamped inside. What is this book called?
3
votes
2answers
61 views

Is the 300 yen price for a “shuin” stamp linguistically related to お参り?

Prevalent price (朱印代) for a stamp in a shrine or a temple is 300 yen, although there are exceptions. Wikipedia confirms this Shuin 朱印. I wonder if the amount bears an association of 参百円{さんびゃくえん} with ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

Heaven in Japanese

I have found that there are a number of words in Japanese that correspond to "heaven" in English. By heaven I mean the concept of a paradisiacal afterlife. The two most frequent in my limited and ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

How accurately can 使い be translated as “angel”?

On jisho.org, 使い is translated with words such as "errand", and the same holds true on translate.google.com. Neither site is offering "angel" as a suggestion. Yet in Matthew 1:20, the phrase: ...
7
votes
1answer
376 views

What do you call the small wooden plates that people write wishes in and hang on some stand in a shrine?

What do you call the small pieces of wood(?) where people write wishes on and hang them on some stand close to where you tie folded o-mikuji (おみくじ)? Or are they also called おみくじ? Related question: ...
2
votes
2answers
635 views

What's the difference between the に祈る【いのる】 and を祈る【いのる】 forms?

What's the difference between the に祈る and を祈る forms? Like what's the difference between (1.) and (2.): うまく行くのに祈ってくださいね。 うまく行くのを祈ってくださいね。 EDIT: What's the difference between the ように祈る and のを祈る ...
3
votes
1answer
191 views

Buddhist facilities

I am working on Japanese texts describing Buddhist temples in South-East Asia and there is quite a number of words I can't really translate in English. Here is a list with my tentative translations (I ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

Can 法王(ほうおう) mean anyone besides the Pope?

I know this word can refer to the the Pope, the head of the Roman Catholic church, but when I tried looking it up on google images, in addition to the Pope, I also saw the Dalai Lama, and some other ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Why does 皮肉 mean “irony”?

I gather that 皮肉 can literally mean "skin-meat." I also see that one definition for 皮 is "mask (hiding one's true nature);  seeming." So perhaps 皮肉 can be understood as "hiding the real meat," which ...
5
votes
1answer
236 views

しゅうと/シュート - The great equalizer

I was watching the movie Mr. Baseball the other day. Several times during the movie they talk about しゅうと which they describe as "the great equalizer". (Could possibly be しゅうとう, but their dialog does ...
11
votes
1answer
249 views

question about kanji sports names 蹴球, 籠球, 庭球, and 野球

A few questions about these words. The words [蹴球]{しゅうきゅう}, [籠球]{ろうきゅう}, and [庭球]{ていきゅう} mean football, basketball, and tennis, respectively. But I have only seen them in a dictionary, and in practice ...
0
votes
1answer
80 views

I need help identifying two words from this song [closed]

I have a song which I need help identifying the words to. This is the song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8o1BUubUhAY At the start the word which he repeats that sounds like 'batsu(?)'. At 4:19 ...
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 ...
6
votes
1answer
353 views

If 'little girl' is 「少女」, then why is 'little boy' 「少年」?

Question 少女 means little girl because 少 means little/small and 女 means lady/female. It makes sense here. However it does not make sense when I read 少年 because 年 means year. Is there any reason why 年 ...
2
votes
1answer
121 views

What do 「はな」 and 「いうとな」 mean?

Here is the sentence including the words. このおっさんはな更{こう}生{せい}だとか なんだとか そんな しゃれたことを考{かんが}えるようなおやじじゃねえよ まあ ごくかんたんにいうとな Another question: Do the 「な」 in both words work as particle?
1
vote
1answer
107 views

What does the word 「部下となし」mean?

Here is the sentence including the word. そのドヤ街{がい}に住{す}む子{こ}どもたちをそそのかしてかれらを部{ぶ}下{か}となし
5
votes
1answer
581 views

Are Japanese terms for the United States and the Soviet Union likely to be confused by native speakers of Japanese?

In the comments section of Do the Japanese believe that USSR dropped nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki?, it's speculated that Japanese people agreed with a statement that the Soviet Union ...
5
votes
1answer
218 views

A word for 'clothed' or 'decent'?

Is there single word in Japanese used for '(fully) clothed' or 'decent'? As in, 'OK, you can come in, I'm decent now' or 'At least one of the kids is (fully) clothed (or dressed).' Of course one can ...
4
votes
1answer
109 views

What do 「やっと」 and 「うせにゃ」 mean?

I am not sure if the 「やっと」 would mean 'at last' or relate to any specific Japanese dialect. Here is sentence including the words in question. だから わしが特{とく}別{べつ}におねがいして やっと ...
4
votes
1answer
900 views

Is the word 野次馬 offensive?

EDICT-based dictionaries mark the word やじ馬 (野次馬) for "onlookers, street crowd, or rubbernecks" as sensitive. I cannot find the word in the 放送禁止用語 lists and Wikipedia page also does not seem to ...
10
votes
2answers
681 views

What words are used for dolphin meat?

What words are used for dolphin meat? Searching jisho.org using "dolphin" in the English field listed several different words for dolphin, but no compounds involving meat. Neither the English nor ...
4
votes
1answer
109 views

「[況]{いわん}や」 and 「[況]{ま}して」 usages

I just learned about 況や and 況して, I tried to search for some detailed grammar point but nothing... Are they the same? I saw both mean "not to mention..." but they seem different from the way I saw ...
0
votes
1answer
80 views

What is the meaning of 一点で?

I saw [一点]{いってん}で used a handful of times in examples like [一点]{いってん}で[撃ち抜く]{うちぬく} or [一点]{いってん}で[討つ]{うつ} and while I know what the word itself means, I don't understand how it's being used with these ...
5
votes
1answer
130 views

How are similar-looking words (e.g. names of medications) distinguished?

In English, it is considered a best practice to emphasize differences between the names of medications that are fairly similar, so as to minimize the risk that a medical practitioner will misread the ...
3
votes
2answers
124 views

What distinguishes 人情 from 人性?

I think I have a sort of loose understanding of how the words differ and what they mean, but I'm really not too sure. I've checked out weblio and goo and ALC to look around a bit first. Can anyone ...
2
votes
2answers
112 views

Is kuzushiji considered archaic?

I am wondering if it is a necessary skill to learn how to read and write kuzushiji in modern japanese.
3
votes
1answer
151 views

What are the meanings of the words 「えぐりこむ」and「べし」?

Here is the sentence I have seen them from a boxing Manga. ひじを左{ひだり}わきからはなさない心{こころ}がまえで..... やや内{ない}角{かく}をねらい えぐりこむようにして...打{う}つべし! Especially 「べし」, I don't know the purpose to use it in the ...
1
vote
1answer
158 views

What do these sentences mean? [closed]

Recently, I heard (in a song) these 3 sentences and I can't translate some words in them. I've tried various translators but I'm still confused, so I hope you can help me. Sentences are. 紡いだ日々もあるよ ...
3
votes
2answers
206 views

What does 間違っていたら、修正してください mean, particularly ~ていたら?

間違っていたら、修正してください。 I don't understand the word いたら after the verb in -TE form. Thank you
6
votes
1answer
129 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?
0
votes
1answer
62 views

What does ~たでえ mean?

Here is the sentences including the words said by a Kansai guy. 思{おも}ったよりやるやないか。ええ? 見{み}なおしたでえ
2
votes
1answer
131 views

Meaning of する verb in 「その少女は小さい口元をしている」

I was looking up in the dictionary, and came across a sentence like this: その少女は小さい口元をしている。 From what I understand, している means "is doing" or "does". So the girl "does" her little mouth? Then I ...
1
vote
1answer
102 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
83 views

Help with identifying a character [closed]

Can anyone tell me what this character means? Thank you in advance!
1
vote
1answer
90 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
99 views

What does the phrase 「やのう」 mean?

I came across the phrase in the following sentence. ええ度{ど}胸{きょう}やのうこまいの...けなげやで The guy who said it is a Kansai speaker. I'm not sure if the phrase is related to the dialect.
1
vote
1answer
101 views

What does the phrase 「ところまでいくまで」 mean?

I have came across the phrase from the below sentence. いきつくところまでいくまでだ。
2
votes
1answer
86 views

Use of 差し込む to describe the sun

I have this sentence: 建物と建物の間から差し込む太陽が音もなく世界を赤くにじませる夕方、... An evening in which the sun piercing from between buildings silently blurs the world with red. I'm struggling with what the sun is ...
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 ...
3
votes
2answers
176 views

Difference between 交替 and 交代

Is there any difference between 交替 and 交代 or are they completely interchangeable?
0
votes
1answer
150 views

What does the phrase 「こうなりゃ」 mean? [duplicate]

Here is the sentence including the phrase. こうなりゃ自{じ}分{ぶん}の力{ちから}でなんとかするさ。 I am not sure if 「なりゃ」 is equivalent to 「なれば」.
3
votes
2answers
796 views

How is the word まさか used?

Plain and simple. The Jisho definition "by no means; never!; well, I never!; you don't say!" doesn't seem to coincide with any of the sample sentences I find either on Jisho or Tatoeba. Can someone ...
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 ...
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
1answer
265 views

How to say “I'm going to spank you if…”?

I am just doing some homework and I can't make the sentence I want. Concretely, I want to write "If you start smoking again, I'm going to give you a good spanking." If I say this in England ...
1
vote
2answers
454 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
139 views

最も有名なのがウーロン茶で : What is the usage of なの here? [duplicate]

What is the usage of なの in: 最も有名なのがウーロン茶で To me, it seems to transfer a adverb [有名] to a noun, is that so? Could someone help to explain, thx. Update: To make the question more clear, the whole ...
3
votes
1answer
72 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.