12
votes
5answers
568 views

Except for pitch, what are the differences in pronunciation between Kansaiben and Tokyoben?

I have tried to ask people this type of question on many occasions and the answer is always the same, but people are notoriously bad at evaluating their own language, so I ask here: Apart for pitch, ...
2
votes
2answers
115 views

明日が/明日は, what's the difference?

I know it's a complicated grammar concept that even Japanese don't fully get, but I'd like to know what's the difference between 明日は火曜日です and 明日が火曜日です They way I understand it, in the second ...
5
votes
1answer
663 views

How to Make a Large 々 With the Keyboard

I have only seen the sub character 々 used before. Now I am encountering the full size character, but cannot figure out how to enter it into a keyboard. Also, I know 々 is a repetition marker. Is ...
1
vote
0answers
16 views

The origins of なんだ as in 飲まなんだ or せなんだ

Even here in Osaka I don't hear it very often among anyone even remotely young, but where does this come from originally? Does anyone have a reference on hand? If I myself had to guess from what I ...
3
votes
3answers
141 views

“Oh no!” - How do the Japanese express feelings of negative shock towards bad news?

Person A : "I am sick today" Person B : "Oh no!" How do the Japanese express feelings of negative shock towards bad news? What would Person B say in Japanese?
11
votes
1answer
192 views

Nouns exhibiting vowel fronting

As touched upon in another thread, there are several nouns that exhibit a kind of vowel shift in older forms, where the ending vowel is fronted when the noun is used on its own to become /i/ or /e/, ...
4
votes
1answer
84 views

How to express “X sounds like Y”

How can I express the idea that one word sounds like another? As a concrete example, I wanted to say, 「フライアー」sounds like 「fryer」. Looking in dictionaries (wadoku/jisho) for "sound like" turns up ...
2
votes
1answer
100 views

Problem understanding 今度一度

I'm having trouble trying to understand a fragment from a dialogue between two students in the book "An Integrated Approach to Intermediate Japanese". I do know that 今度 means "now", "next time", or ...
0
votes
1answer
41 views

Understanding かなでたり

I was reading a page (http://kids.goo.ne.jp/shirabemono/detail.html?id=153), but I couldn't understand this phrase: 音楽は、音をきいたりかなでたりして楽しむものだね。 I understand the "tari form" (or whatever it is ...
4
votes
0answers
76 views

What are the differences amongst 「ならびに」, 「かつ」 and 「および」?

In which situations can I choose one of them to use?
7
votes
3answers
112 views

How do ことになる and ようになる differ? (When ことになる cannot = “It has been decided that”)

I understand that ことになる has the meaning "It has been decided that" and can be used to point to a ritual or habit of a society like taking off your shoes. However, I don't get what it means when it is ...
4
votes
2answers
157 views

Accepting compliments (without rejecting them)

I find it much more sincere to accept compliments and show how grateful I am rather than to belittle myself. Therefore I would like to know some phrases in Japanese to accept compliments and show my ...
0
votes
0answers
46 views

What's the standard process to learn Japanese? [on hold]

This is kind of a meta question, so if it is not accepted here I'll post somewhere else. No problem. Well, I decided to pick up Japanese as a hobby language. I'm not in a hurry and it would be my ...
3
votes
1answer
98 views

What is the difference between ~あろうが and ~あろうと?

I'm writing a report for a class, and at first I wrote:  […]どのような批判があろうが[…] But then I sat back and thought, maybe it should actually be:  […]どのような批判があろうと[…] But now I'm not sure if ...
0
votes
2answers
90 views

What is the て-form of みます?

I have learned from my previous studies that it is みんで. However, Google translate seems to give me the answer みて. Which is correct?
0
votes
0answers
66 views

Where did “Japan” come from when the locals called their country “Nihon”? [on hold]

The title says it all. I was wondering where and who named Japan "Japan".
5
votes
1answer
145 views

Understanding a phrase from a news article

Reading an article on NHK, it starts with this sentence about the missing Algerian plane. The French foreign minister says that it probably crashed in northern Mali: ...
3
votes
1answer
77 views

ではないか Grammar translation

what does ではないか mean in the sentence below? And can someone please translate it? 耳に馴染みのない方も多いのではないかと思いますが、 (after that he explains the word)....
2
votes
2answers
85 views

Do these two questions differ in any way?

There is a question in my Japanese book to translate a sentence. This is how I translated it: わたし の てがみ の うえ の つくえ を よまないで。 But, this is how my book translated it: つくえ の うえ の わたし の てがみ を ...
3
votes
1answer
111 views

な, の, である and ために

When used with a noun ために could have two meanings : (1) 学生のために、奨学金がある。 There are scholarships for (the sake of) students. (2) 学生のために、学校の規則に従わなければならない。 Since s/he is a student s/he ...
7
votes
1answer
784 views

What do you call brothers or sisters of the same age?

From what I can see people are forced to use the term of a younger or older brother/sister oneesan, oniisan, etc. But what do you call a brother or sister if they're the same age as you?
6
votes
1answer
93 views

Why is 左必之佐 read as サビシサ in 万葉集 entry 3734?

Entry 3734 of the 万葉集 reads as follows1: 等【ト】保【ホ】伎【キ】山【やま】 世【セ】伎【キ】毛【モ】故【コ】要【エ】伎【キ】奴【ヌ】 伊【イ】麻【マ】左【サ】良【ラ】尓【ニ】 安【ア】布【フ】倍【ベ】伎【キ】与【ヨ】之【シ】能【ノ】 奈【ナ】伎【キ】我【ガ】佐【サ】夫【ブ】之【シ】佐 【サ】 Transcribed in more modern ...
4
votes
1answer
73 views

影 vs 形 vs 形状. What's the difference between them?

I've been reading a text and all three of these come up 影 vs 形 vs 形状. I know they mean shape/figure, but is there a more nuanced difference between them? I can see the logic of where they are in the ...
4
votes
1answer
159 views

A sentence which I can't make sense of

On the 助動詞 wikipedia page there is this sentence and I can't make sense of the part in bold: 助詞「の」「ので」「のに」等が続く場合に使われる。連体形だが名詞を修飾することはできない。なお、形容動詞を品詞と認めない立場では別の考え方になる。 Here is my try : (Those ...
6
votes
1answer
131 views

Some Japanese dictionaries (e.g. 大辞林, 大辞泉, and 明鏡国語辞典) use this inverted triangle outline symbol (▽) for some kanji compounds. What does it mean?

It doesn't apply to all the words, just some. Here are examples of words from that are marked with that symbol 悪い (with reading にくい): 大辞泉; 大辞林 面倒くさい (with reading めんどくさい): 大辞泉; 大辞林 皆 (with reading ...
0
votes
0answers
52 views

lyric of this song. The singing part is Japanese [on hold]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFUt37HL_R8 The singing starts from 0:47. I'd be grateful to anyone who'd spend their precious time to translate the lyric of this track in English. Thank you in ...
1
vote
1answer
79 views

What is the meaning of masu-stem + proposition

Example sentence: オオカミのことばに従い、 森に行った。 What is the meaning of this construction? Does it have a special meaning?
1
vote
0answers
52 views

Japanese Character-based Input (Cang Jie) [on hold]

Does anyone know if an IME for Japanese exists which is based on the shapes of characters rather than the pronunciation. For example, I have been using Cang Jie for Chinese input recently and find it ...
13
votes
4answers
408 views

In what ways do Japanese children overgeneralize conjugation patterns?

(Preface: I'm not well-versed in language acquisition, so the context I've provided here will be dumbed-down, or perhaps just dumb.) Context: When children acquire their first language, they ...
6
votes
2answers
153 views

Difference between 見る and 観る?

Lately I've seen in some dialog games with this difference. They use 観る rather than 見る, e.g.: ・あなたテレビ観るかな。 ・あんまり観ない方なんだ。 So I'm thinking I can use 見る to make the same dialog. However there ...
2
votes
1answer
88 views

When is it possible to split である in で+ある

It is very difficult to find literature on this topic and the only related question is Splicing である with a topic whose answer is (to my view) a bit elusive and the reference provided by snailboat is ...
1
vote
2answers
65 views

Conjugating into なければ

To create ~なければいけません or similar forms, I've been having trouble finding the exact method for conjugating into ~なければ. I imagine (but also greatly doubt) that it's something like this: 食べる -> 食べない -> ...
3
votes
1answer
76 views

How to say “As a <position>, …”

Example : As a friend, I think we should... What do you add to ともだち to add the "As a" prefix? Also, after that part, does the rest of the sentence follow the normal rules of a Japanese sentence? ...
7
votes
1answer
87 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
55 views

How to say “Food of Light” [on hold]

Google returns "Hikari no tabemono" is it ok? I need the meaning: "food made of/with light", to name a line of products which are made with natural and purified ingredients, like within an "spiritual ...
5
votes
2answers
96 views

what is the difference between [法度]{はっと} and [法律]{ほうりつ}?

To add a bit more to my question, I'm wondering if the words are used interchangeably, or if 法度 has more a sense of law that is set up to ban or prohibit something? Is 法度 a commonly used word?
8
votes
1answer
119 views

Can the volitional form be used when the speaker is not intending to do the action themselves?

From what I understand the volitional form is often used to mean "let's do" something, e.g. 行こう can mean "let's go". Can this form be use when the speaker themself is not going to perform the action? ...
11
votes
1answer
145 views

“bigger number + から + smaller number” and the omission of 「まで」

A sentence from an article on Bitcoin in Asahi Shimbun: それが世界{せかい}で1兆{ちょう}から7千億円{せんおくえん}相当{そうとう}も流通{りゅうつう}している。 I guess it can be translated into: The value of those (bitcoins) circulating all ...
3
votes
3answers
243 views

How does one give directions in Japanese (e.g. to a cab driver)?

I already know some things, like 「最初{さいしょ}の道{みち}を右{みぎ}に曲{ま}がって」 and the like. However, unless one knows the exact moment to shout 「止{と}めて!」 then one would need to know how to say things like "it's the ...
7
votes
3answers
213 views

そんなの (sonnano), あんなの, (annano) and the like

Several years back, I learned from a free Japanese podcast that referring to something with 'sonnano' or 'annano' is a way of looking down on it / speaking of it as an undesirable thing. There have ...
15
votes
6answers
953 views

How should I select what first-person pronoun to use?

I've always had trouble choosing which first person pronoun to use - 私 (watashi), 僕 (boku), or 俺 (おれ). What kind of factors should I keep in mind when choosing between these? Is it common to vary ...
5
votes
2answers
147 views

What does 「なし」in 「問題なし」 mean?

I just started playing the video game Mother 3, and if you try to examine the trash can in front of his house, Lucas says, 問題なし. I expect this means something like, "no problem here", but I haven't ...
0
votes
2answers
160 views

What does this word mean?

I got this from a Japanese bar owner, she said it means "bamboo", but I used Google translate and can't find a similar word that looks like that. Also, is it possible to type out this word?
5
votes
2answers
189 views

What is the difference between それでいい and それがいい here?

As I understand it, それでいい means 'it is fine like this' and それがいい means 'this is fine', but what is the protagonist trying to convey here by first using それでいい and then correcting himself to それがいい? ...
0
votes
1answer
184 views

〒 symbol in a resume

I have a doubt concerning this symbol 〒. What does it mean when in a resume it´s followed by a number? e.g: 〒 331-0811 Thanks for your help!
2
votes
1answer
170 views

What does adding お at the end of a word change?

An example would be: "watashi wa cake o(お) tabetai". What does the お do? I tried on google translate and it seems it gives pertenence to that thing..like it belongs either to you or me..but I still ...
6
votes
2answers
531 views

What is the rule to write furigana (ruby)?

I am confused in determining the correct way to write furigana. Is a furigana only allowed to be attached to a single kanji character? In other words, can a furigana attached to more than one kanji ...
6
votes
1answer
415 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 ...
6
votes
2answers
223 views

How would you say 'the past ____'? (i.e. the past 'hour', the past 'day)

I've been wondering how to say 'I spent the past [time frame] [insert action]'. For example, "I spent the past hour studying Japanese". Would it be translated to something like... ...
3
votes
1answer
176 views

How to read 連体形 + 上

Taking an example from a page naruto linked in another thread: 外国人が日本語を習得する上で難しい点がたくさんあります。 My inclination is to read this as うえ since it's followed by で, however I've got a nagging feeling it ...

15 30 50 per page