6
votes
1answer
137 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
138 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
203 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
209 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
66 views

Japanese Character-based Input (Cang Jie) [closed]

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 ...
3
votes
1answer
154 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
175 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
573 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
108 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
132 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
109 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
74 views

How to say “Food of Light” [closed]

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 ...
2
votes
2answers
86 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 -> ...
5
votes
2answers
115 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?
6
votes
2answers
343 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
495 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
219 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?
6
votes
2answers
846 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
680 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

How do you say “to ask for” in Japanese?

How do you say "to ask for" in Japanese?. For example: He asked his boss for a raise. We ask for great revival. Is "仰{あお}ぐ" fine? In particular, I want to use something that's natural and ...
3
votes
2answers
156 views

Use of 自分を and もらう

I have trouble understanding the following sentence: ルーカスさんは、自分をファーストネームで呼んでもらいたいと言うけれども、三年も年上の人なので、どうも「トム」とは呼びにくい。 Is it. Mister Lukas wants to get called by his first name but it's hard to do ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

How would you say “if you don't mind my asking”?

This is something that is often said in English to politely ask a question while avoiding sounding overly intrusive. For example, What do you do for a living, if you don't mind my asking? The ...
6
votes
2answers
840 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... ...
1
vote
1answer
137 views

突っ込む所 - is this what it means?

Would "私を見て突っ込む所はないか" translate to something like "Would you come take a closer look at me?" I've done a lot of context searching for 突っ込む所 but I can't quite pin down a solid meaning on it.
5
votes
1answer
171 views

When should I use で or を particles? [duplicate]

Newcomer here. Trying to learn Japanese on my own for years now. Here's a first question. How can I make sure to learn correctly the difference between using を and で in the context of an action ...
7
votes
1answer
165 views

Use of ㈰, ㈪, ㈫ in enumerations

Today, in some official document I received, an enumeration (of items to address) had each line prepended with ㈰, ㈪, ㈫ etc. From context, it is reasonably easy to guess that this might be an ...
2
votes
1answer
127 views

Using the stem form of a verb like the て form, as in 燃えゆく or 飲みほして

What is the significance of sometimes using the stem form of a verb like how the て form would be? For example: 燃えゆく (from HANABI) 飲みほして (from Ambiguous) It's something I hear now and again, ...
7
votes
2answers
366 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 ...
12
votes
3answers
441 views

私は猫が好き and 猫は私が好き

I'm an absolute beginner. I've learned Japanese in my spare time for less than two months. This is my first question here. Even though I think this question is potentially trivial, it's perhaps the ...
5
votes
2answers
612 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? ...
6
votes
1answer
137 views

「〜がする」 the extended use of する (to do)

I'm going through some basic grammar and this one website teaches the "extended" use of the word する. There is a confusing example which looks like: 波の音 がする The translation is: "(I) hear the ...
7
votes
2answers
218 views

What is “koto” used for?

I know "koto" means thing, but I've seen it used like this in my Self-Study Japanese book: Nihon no koto ga yoku wakarimasu ka. and Chiimu no koto o kangaete imasshita Does this mean Japan's thing ...
1
vote
1answer
98 views

となる - Grammatical explanation please [duplicate]

can someone please explain となる ? I read it everywhere but still don't know what it exactly means. Here's just an example sentence: この世界が心つなぐ鍵となる
6
votes
1answer
333 views

What difference is there between そろそろ and もうすぐ? (if any)

そろそろ and もうすぐ can both be translated as 'soon', but I feel they have different uses and connotations. My take on it is that そろそろ is slightly more formal and has more of a meaning of 'It's about ...
6
votes
2answers
225 views

電話する or 電話をする to form the verb

I'd like to know if there is any difference between 電話する and 電話をする, if they mean the same, or if 電話をする doesn't even exist. I ask this because in an exercise in my book it says to use をする with 電話 to ...
5
votes
3answers
275 views

How to say “rough year” or “rough time”?

I want to say "it was a rough year", but I'm not sure how to put it. I thought of "難しい年頃" which I understand means "difficult age", normally used to describe the rebel age of kids. How do people ...
7
votes
3answers
174 views

Is “先生 / せんせい / sensei” haughty or overly-formal

If I were to tell my Japanese friend that I plan to become a teacher, would I literally say that I will become a sensei? I have always thought of this as an honorific title, and it feels odd to call ...
2
votes
1answer
71 views

Does the use of 予 such as in 猶予 to mean “in advance” have any precedent in Chinese?

There are a lot of Japanese words that use the morpheme よ, written 予, to mean "in advance". This clearly looks like a loan from Chinese, but I do not know of any examples of Chinese words or texts ...
3
votes
1answer
222 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
220 views

How do you use と言ってた?

I am reading Genki II. And I found a report sentence (a sentence that states what somebody else said) that ended with と言ってた: チョコレートを食べすぎたって言ってた。 He said he ate too much chocolate. I've got two ...
3
votes
1answer
191 views

“は + verb” instead of “を + verb”?

I have stumbled upon instances where "は + verb" is used in situations where I thought "を + verb" should be used. For example recently I've seen "その覚悟はしてました" (I was prepared for that) and "楽な道は選ぶな" ...
8
votes
1answer
224 views

How to list numbers of things

Where do you place the counter in Japanese when you want to specify how many of something there are, especially if you're listing multiple things? I believe the counter usually goes after the ...
2
votes
1answer
189 views

Meaning of 虚ろに in this particular case

I was doing my daily dose of reading and I came by this particular sentence, which I had a little bit of trouble finding the meaning for. 「このあたりからまた意識が虚ろになってしまいました」 The context is a patient who had ...
2
votes
1answer
375 views

Is the 'h' in Japanese pronounced the same as the 'f'?

I'm aware that the so-called 'f' in ふ isn't pronounced with the English labiodental fricative [f], but rather the bilabial fricative [ɸ]. I'd like to know if Japanese speakers also use the bilabial ...
1
vote
3answers
635 views

Can you say “よい夢へ” instead of “よい夢を”?

I saw this message created by a native speaker:「よい夢{ゆめ} を 」. That seemed strange to me. I would have expected: 「よい夢 へ 」. My thinking right now is that: 「よい夢を」 is a straight contraction of ...
3
votes
3answers
296 views

ニッポン? Why Kana?

Just saw this picture: Notice the ニッポン. Why is it written in Kana?! Isn't that like super bizarre?
4
votes
1answer
245 views

つもり - expectation. How to use?

In my notes I have the following example: 私は 仕事を 止めない つもり です。 - I expect my work will not stop. Does anybody know the rule for using つもり? Is it just verb plain form e.g. 今月 家を買う つもりです - ...
3
votes
3answers
189 views

Valid interpretations of the (first) て-form in 何かを犠牲にして、その上で、平和は成り立っている。

What are the valid interpretations of the (first) て-form in the following sentence? 何かを犠牲にして、その上で、平和は成り立っている。 I'm having difficulties assigning a definite meaning to this sentence. There seems ...
0
votes
1answer
159 views

Still trying to get my head around に and で

I've been trying to understand those two particles when applied to these phrases: 私は朝ご飯にお茶を飲みます 私は朝ご飯でお茶を飲みます 私は朝ご飯の時にお茶を飲みます What I more or less undersand is: the only/main ...
3
votes
2answers
803 views

What does よいではないか mean?

I saw the phrase よいではないか (yoi de wa nai ka) in a comic strip, and decided to look it up because its literal meaning of "isn't it good?" didn't seem to make any sense. My research indicated that it ...

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