7
votes
1answer
205 views

What does 外国人のように imply in this sentence?

My friend is reading a book, and it contains the following sentence: すると、高畑は外国人のように両手を上げる仕草をした。 Why does this say 外国人のように? Are foreigners known for a particular gesture in which we raise both ...
6
votes
1answer
209 views

Translating volitive expressions in ads into English

I saw this on an advertisement outside the construction site of a company that makes wooden houses: 木{き}の家{いえ}と、暮{く}らそう。 I'm trying to think of a way to translate it other than: Live with a wooden ...
6
votes
2answers
277 views

How do I say “requirements” in an IT context?

So I work at a Japanese company as a developer and I have seen the word "requirements" written as both 要件 and 要求 What is the difference between these 2 words? Which one would I use in these examples? ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

How long would it take on average to learn Japanese [closed]

i know a small bit of Japanese from back in high school but stopped when it was never made clear that Japanese went for 2 semesters instead of 1 and by the time they told me about it (even though i ...
2
votes
1answer
194 views

Why is なんて the correct answer for this question?

Here's a question from N3文法スピードマスター。 英語も中国語もスペイン語もできる*なんて*、素晴らしいですねえ。 This question is multiple-choice, so the other incorrect choices were: なんと、など、なんか just for your information. Here's my ...
3
votes
1answer
116 views

なにかと思ったら meaning

なにかと思ったら, I have come across this sentence a couple of times when talking to Japanese people, but I seem to struggle with the actual meaning. I translate it as "if I am thinking of something" but the ...
4
votes
1answer
161 views

What's the difference between ことがある or ことはある?

In Tae Kim's guide, he wrote a few example sentences: 徹夜して、宿題することはある。 一人で行くことはありません。 パリに行ったことはありますか。 お寿司を食べたことがある。 そういうのを見たことがなかった。 In these examples, I don't really understand why some sentences ...
9
votes
1answer
179 views

「はは」(母) and ハ行転呼

It occurred to me the other day that if ハ行転呼 had affected all applicable environments without exception, 母 /haha/ (or I guess properly it was /ɸaɸa/, right?)should have become /hawa/. The Japanese ...
3
votes
1answer
134 views

What's the difference between 程 and 程度?

What the difference between 程 and 程度? I haven't been able to find any using my dictionary.
6
votes
1answer
388 views

What is the relation between the two verbs 思われる and 思う?

If 思われる is "its own verb," meaning "to seem;  to appear," and is independent of the separate verb 思う, meaning "to think," is there a conceptual relation between the two? I ask because I initially ...
3
votes
1answer
399 views

Verbs which are more frequently used to built the honorific passive forms

I'd like to ask you a question about this honorific form. I will give an example as detailed as possible to make this question clear. The verb yomu is often used in passive form to show respect: ...
4
votes
2answers
272 views

Meaning of でもない in this context?

While listening to the song "Yasashisa no Riyuu", I noticed the following sentence: 今は誰の名前でもない 輝きの彼方へ Which by the fansub is translated like this: Now it doesn't matter whose name it may ...
10
votes
1answer
4k views

Why is 楽しみに!wrong?

I was corrected on Lang-8 website that I should write 楽しみ!or 楽しみにしています!instead of 楽しみに!. And I don't understand why. Help please. 教えてくださいませんか。
3
votes
1answer
97 views

Help with a relative clause + を中心に

Here's the sentence: あるいはまた、東南アジアを中心に世界各地で活躍するいわゆる華僑勢力の多くが福建省出身者である事実を見ても、福建人たちの「海外雄飛」のパワーを知ることができる。 My rough translation is something like: "Moreover, looking also at the fact that a large ...
4
votes
2answers
90 views

なので relationship does not seem to match in そうじが楽なので、部屋にはなるべく物を置かないようにしている

This is from N3文法スペードマスター。 This is one of the questions taken from the book: そうじが楽( )、部屋にはなるべく物を置かないようにしている。 The blank in the bracket is to be filled with one from this set of choices: ...
3
votes
1answer
250 views

Interpretation of a sentence by Mishima

In Yukio Mishima's "The Temple of the Golden Pavilion," (三島由紀夫によって書かれた「金閣寺」) one of the characters, Kashiwagi, writes a sentence over a poster: 未知の人生とは我慢がならぬ。 Here is the passage: ...
3
votes
2answers
352 views

Counter for bowls of ramen?

I'm writing a skit but I need a counter for bowls of ramen. ひとつ ふたつ somehow sounds weird. Is there a counter for bowls?
2
votes
1answer
176 views

What is the meaning of 大奥婚?

This headline in today's zakzak news, related to actress Miho Kanno getting married. 堺雅人&菅野美穂、“大奥婚”! 電撃ゴールイン What is the meaning of 大奥婚? I know 大奥 and 婚 by themselves, but not together. I ...
1
vote
1answer
761 views

What's the difference between 〜に対しての and 〜に対する?

The question understanding 対する details [noun]に対する[noun], but what is the difference between [noun]に対しての[noun] and [noun]に対する[noun]? Space ALC has a fair number of examples for both に対する and に対しての ...
2
votes
1answer
210 views

Past tense of なし in Classical Japanese?

Is it なしかりたらず as a usual し adjective? Or is it something weirder? I need this for a skit.
3
votes
1answer
226 views

Meaning of “何か来るんやろなとは思ったけどな”

I saw this pic on 9gag.com! I was able to read the following line perfectly (or maybe not): 何か来るんやろなとは思ったけどな. I'm not sure what it exactly means, but I have a feeling that this is slang. 来る means to ...
3
votes
2answers
488 views

How does the addition of のか to the end of a sentence affect the meaning?

I've always had trouble understanding か (question particle) in casual speech. I read that in casual situations, か can be used to give the sentence an exasperated or sarcastic tone. Like in: 負けっかよ! ...
6
votes
2answers
164 views

Help translating よなも in a song

This is from a Trigun soundtrack, song called Sound Life (lyrics), 3rd line: 3つ目の夜に ワルツの子は世界面にウエーブを 打つ The 世界面 is translated as "world face", however pronunciation is given as よなも. I can't find ...
4
votes
1answer
188 views

What does ホイっと mean?

in a manga I was reading this expression appeared. It was about a lazy girl, who was thinking about getting herself a boyfriend (so that he can do the house chores for her), and then her friend ...
2
votes
1answer
176 views

Why do days of the week use on-yomi kanji readings?

I would like to know if there is detailed information as to why days of the week use on-yomi readings, for example 月 in 月曜日 【げつようび】 Were these readings (as spoken) imported from the ...
4
votes
2answers
177 views

What is an appropriate translation of 親和感?

In 1970, Masahiro Mori proposed the theory of the Uncanny Valley, which states that "when human replicas look and act almost, but not perfectly, like actual human beings, it causes a response of ...
5
votes
1answer
125 views

Readings of 漏斗:じょうご vs ろうと

Is there any difference in meaning between the words じょうご and ろうと, both meaning something like "funnel", both written with the kanji 漏斗? There's some indication in the answers here that ろうと may be a ...
3
votes
2answers
352 views

Why is this guy hesitant to call and ask her out on a date?

This is a section of text from my JLPT textbook on page 33: ...
8
votes
1answer
195 views

What is the connection between shrimp and old age?

Shrimp(えび) is written several different ways in Japanese. For example, there are the words commonly used in Chinese: 蝦 and 鰕. There is also a compound specific to Japan, 海老, and a kokuji, 蛯. Both of ...
3
votes
1answer
654 views

Which time expressions take the に particle?

The textbook Japanese for busy people 1 tells me, in lesson 6, that "relative time expressions like あした, らいしゅう, こんげつ and きょねん generally do not take any particles." They exemplify this with sentences ...
1
vote
1answer
130 views

meaning of から in following sentence

Tell me please, what is から means in the following sentence? 本当のところを言うと、この時間に悠馬さんがここを通るからと、夏目さんに教えてもらったので、待っていたんです。 Thank you very much for help!
3
votes
1answer
178 views

Using と to mark a question

I've been working on listening practice again. This time, I'm watching the first episode of an anime series called スケッチブック 〜full color's〜. In the first episode, a certain character asks three ...
4
votes
2answers
745 views

Why is stroke order important?

While I understand that stroke order is important, I do not understand why it is important. If the final product would like the same, why does it matter? I don't have an issue following stroke order. ...
2
votes
1answer
113 views

Is 「お礼を言う」 considered formal?

I can only think of formal occasions when I have heard "thank you" spoken this way. Is this the case? Could it perhaps also be spoken sarcastically to have the opposite effect?
6
votes
1answer
240 views

Is ないで a te-form?

In this answer, Darius Jahandarie says that ないで is a te-form. I asked about this on chat, and Flaw answered with a question: If auxiliary ください follows after てform and ないでください exists, can we ...
7
votes
2answers
402 views

Which verb receives a negation in a Japanese sentence?

I can say 歩いて渡る which translates to "to cross by walking". However, if I would like to say "I am not going to cross by walking, but by some other means", would I say 歩かないで渡る or 歩いて渡らない? There are ...
5
votes
2answers
377 views

Origin of -aru verbs: いらっしゃる、おっしゃる、くださる、なさる

I think all of the mentioned verbs are in the same class, because they all inflect irregularly in the same way: -aimasu for the polite form rather than -arimasu. My question is how these verbs were ...
4
votes
3answers
428 views

Are non-base-10 numbers ever written in kanji?

This morning I was thinking about the joke "There are only 10 types of people in the world: those who understand binary, and those who don't". Considering if this would translate well to Japanese, I ...
7
votes
2answers
492 views

When to use 聴く vs 聞く vs 訊く?

When should one use 聴く instead of 聞く? Is there a precise rule for which one to use in which situation? I have a feeling that 聞 is used more when the source of the sound is a person or other living ...
5
votes
1answer
294 views

Words for Ginkgo in Japanese: ぎんきょう and ぎんなん

I decided to read about the words for Ginkgo in Japanese (as in Ginkgo biloba). I was surprised to learn that Ginkgo comes from Japanese! According to Wikipedia, Engelbert Kaempfer, while writing ...
4
votes
1answer
235 views

How are these two sentences not negating their premise?

In my JLPT textbook, 日本語総まとめN1読解, on page17, there are these two sentences (which are both part of a larger paragraph, but I hope I have included enough): ...
3
votes
0answers
48 views

About the relationship between 「ので」 and 「~てください」: [duplicate]

According to "A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar", ので cannot be used in sentences that contains a request in the main clause. However, in many phrases at sites or another grammar books I have ...
5
votes
2answers
266 views

Origin of 信じる, 感じる, etc?

Wikipedia claims that Japanese verbs are a closed class and that loanwords from Chinese always use する. 信じる, 感じる seems to be an exception. Why aren't they 信をする and 感をする? Maybe because one kanji is too ...
2
votes
1answer
161 views

Semantic meaning of 出 in 出会う, 出来る, etc

There seems to be many Japanese verbs that are mysteriously compounded with 出る, like 出来る and 出会う. What is the actual semantic role of the 出? I'm especially curious about the difference between 会う and ...
5
votes
1answer
258 views

Difference between すべて and ぜんぶ [duplicate]

Title basically says it all. I think meanings are very close. Are they interchangeable? Are they appropriate for different contexts or situations? Can one be applied to animate objects and other ...
4
votes
1answer
185 views

What is the origin of the phrase 一石二鳥?

This particular 四字熟語 is exactly the same as the proverb in English, "kill two birds with one stone." I find it to be a strange coincidence that both would have this phrase independently of each other, ...
4
votes
2answers
308 views

Fooling honest people, or honest people look foolish?

Clearly I'm still struggling with the use of ばかを見る, which I have asked about before. This sentence appears in a question in my JLPT textbook: 正直者{しょうじきもの}がばかをみない 社会{しゃかい}であるべきだ。 Based on the ...
4
votes
2answers
421 views

The topic is the restaurant, or the conversation is at the restaurant?

I have this sentence in my JLPT textbook: 話{はなし}の種{たね}に、新{あたら}しくできたレストランに食{た}べに行{い}ってみた。 I think I understand the part after the comma, which I believe is saying, "... tried to go eat at the new ...
4
votes
2answers
374 views

Slip of the mouth instead of a slip of the tongue?

This sentence is in my JLPT textbook: つい舌{した}がすべってしまい、うそがばれてしまった。 I thought that it meant something like, "with an unintentional slip of the tongue, my lie was exposed." However, the sentence is ...
4
votes
1answer
197 views

What is a good synonym for「〜のに」at the end of a sentence?

I'm trying to come up with a good synonymous expression to put on a flashcard for 「〜のに」at the end of a sentence like these 彼が出て行けばいいのに。(I wish he would go.) あの建物さえなければ、きれいな景色が見えるのに。(If it wasn't for ...

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