4
votes
1answer
442 views

Differences between the words for “decoration”?

While making a list of Christmas vocabulary, I've noticed there's several words for "decoration". 飾り, デコレーション, 飾り付け, and 装飾 are the ones I've seen. Judging by google images(with "クリスマス" added), they'...
3
votes
2answers
274 views

「しまう」 as an auxiliary verb

I feel like I always see 「しまう」 at the end of sentences (not the verb "to put away"). I saw some examples here on Weblio. どうしても写真は実物より劣ってしまう。 Pictures really don't do it justice. ...
3
votes
1answer
144 views

「身につく」 Usage of this word in this sentence

From what i can tell, she is saying something along the lines of 'Even if you have the whole cake, it's only 70 grams' but i'm unsure on the usage of 身につく here. Unless my interpretation of the context ...
2
votes
1answer
117 views

新しい 机 を 買って もらいました。“They bought me a new desk” or “I bought and received a new desk”?

Ok, so I was studying some Japanese phrases when this showed up: 新しい 机 を 買って もらいました。 The translation provided in the source material is: "They bought me a new desk" What I don't understand, however, ...
4
votes
2answers
137 views

Understanding 「女神を信じてここまで来たのだろう」

Context: The group is going to be attacked and one of the people is worried whether they will lose the fight or not and then the leader says what's below. 「祈りを持って戦うのだ。正しき者が負けるわけがない。女神を信じてここまで来たのだろう」 ...
2
votes
3answers
842 views

What does the “だった” in “だったっけ” mean?

From what I can find out, "たっけ" is just an expression that shows that you're trying to remember something, but what does the "だった" part mean? I have a few guesses, but they don't seem to match that ...
2
votes
2answers
151 views

Is “クリスマスの休みだよ!” an appropriate expression?

Is クリスマスの休みだよ! an appropriate expression? For instance, as a Facebook post or what have you? The main part I'm wondering about is よ. My understanding is that よ usually implies that you're ...
3
votes
2answers
163 views

Is either 霊験 or あらたか used outside the phrase 霊験あらたか?

Is either 霊験【れいげん】 or あらたか used outside of the phrase 霊験【れいげん】あらたか "miraculous"? (I believe れいけん is also a possible reading of 霊験?) The goo辞書 entry for あらたか has 「霊験―な神」 as its example phrase, and the ...
5
votes
4answers
398 views

Most egregious examples of the reading of a kanji changing due to (textually) distant characters

I've been thinking about how Japanese people can read a text (out loud, say) when the readings of the kanji can be so variable depending on okurigana, suffixes, or prefixes that change the meaning and/...
3
votes
4answers
263 views

In だったっけ, why is the second “っ”(tsu) used when it can't be connected to “け”(ke)?

From what I understand, っ is used to "double" the "t" sound, so in だった it makes sense because it's pronounced "datta", but why is it used in the second part of the phrase? Full sentence: "...
4
votes
1answer
218 views

Difference between 怒り{いかり} and 怒り{おこり}

Both 怒り{いかり} and 怒り{おこり} are nouns and mean "anger". Even the kanji are the same! How can we distinguish these two?
3
votes
2answers
311 views

Usage and meanings of 十分

In English, "to have enough" has several different meanings. One of them is "to be fed up": If you have an argument and want to express that you're fed up and about to walk out of the room and you can ...
2
votes
1answer
226 views

を without a transitive verb? [duplicate]

「他の人に手紙を見られてしまいました」 I interpret this sentence's meaning as something like, "The letter ended up being seen by someone else." From what I understand, the verb 見る is transitive, "to see." The verb ...
6
votes
1answer
849 views

Is Taito (たいと) (kanji/kokuji with the highest stroke count consisting of 84 strokes) legit and ever used?

Taito is mentioned as the kanji/kokuji with the highest stroke count consisting of 84 strokes in Wikipedia. Taito is composed of two kanji ("cloud" (雲) and "dragon" (龍) repeated three times each ...
4
votes
2answers
247 views

What's the difference between ~れれば and ~れば?

別に僕は周りを無視して本に没頭したいわけでもないので、見ろと言われれば見る Would it mean the same thing if 言われれば was replaced with 言われば? What's the difference if any between ~れれば and ~れば? I'm also not certain of the meaning of the ...
6
votes
1answer
153 views

朝ご飯は vs. 朝ご飯に - difference between these two sentences?

I wanted to ask my language partner what he ate for breakfast. However, I was unsure whether what I said was correct despite him telling me that it's good - I would just like some verification. I ...
6
votes
1answer
246 views

What does パー mean by itself?

In the anime "Fairy Tail", I came across the line 「ってか お色気代 1000ジュエル パーだわ これ」 which the translator subtitled as "By the way, I spent the 1000 jewels I saved by using my sexual appeal for this..." I ...
6
votes
2answers
335 views

What is the difference between すみません and すみませんでした?

What is the difference between すみません and すみませんでした (or すまない and すまなかった)? If it is what the 「でした」 suggests and すみませんでした is the past form and used to apologize for things done in the past, then what I ...
5
votes
2answers
196 views

Is saying 行ってきます and ただいま appropriate for guests?

We are asked to stay at a family friend's house for a couple of days. I was wondering, given that we're guests, what are the appropriate greetings to say when you're leaving and coming back to the ...
3
votes
1answer
132 views

What does this mean 先月 何日 会社を やすみましたか。

I come across the following sentence: 先月 何日 会社を やすみましたか。 I am confused about that this is actually asking. Is it asking: How many days of holidays did the company have last month? Which date did ...
7
votes
1answer
163 views

Is 忝い(かたじけない) used in contemporary language?

I'm currently watching Rurouni Kenshin, and Kenshin says 忝い(かたじけない) a lot to express his gratitude. I looked it up a little and based on this it seems like it's old Samurai language, but I wonder if ...
7
votes
2answers
404 views

Polite Way of Saying “I can't…(answer the phone)” (しかねる vs. できない)

I'd like to ask about a polite way to say "I can't (do something for you)". I'm sure the answer will depend on the context, so specifically, I'm curious about how to convey "I won't be able to answer ...
3
votes
2answers
209 views

Making sense of をと

どのような状況下であっても必ず十分な結果をと思い必死に過ごした3か月でした。 I'm only able to understand "No matter what circumstances you are put through..." and then something about producing sufficient results- the words that follow ...
7
votes
1answer
148 views

What does 八 have to do with [八つ当たり]【やつあたり】?

For the longest time, I had never seen yatsuatari written down. I always figured it was written 奴当たり, which I figured would have been derived from 「あの奴に当たる」 or something. Imagine my surprise when I ...
1
vote
1answer
58 views

If 「は」 marks a topic, and 「が」 marks a subject, what does 「です」 do in terms of nuance?

When using 「は」 it means the word before it is the topic of the sentence, it also implies contrast. (e.g. 「私は犬です」 means, "As for me, I am a dog" This means that I'm not a cat.) When using 「が」 it means ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

Correct way to say “I am a beginner in Japanese”

What is the correct way to say: "I am a beginner in Japanese". Google Translate shows the translation is: 私は日本語で初心者です However, Google search shows: 私は日本語の初心者です has a lot more hits. Which ...
6
votes
1answer
408 views

Desire words: When to use 欲望{よくぼう}, 欲求{よっきゅう}, 欲{よく} and 欲念{よくねん}?

Today I ran into these three desire words, which are defined: 欲 = greed, craving, desire, avarice, wants 欲求 = desire 欲望 = desire, appetite, lust And while searching dictionaries, I also found a ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

やり as a prefix - clarification please

I have the following title: やり終えたことはチェックしておこう! which I think is roughly saying there is a that in advance of finishing there is a checklist (can anybody help with the literal translation?). My ...
3
votes
1answer
144 views

I've never seen a sentence that uses か and は together like this before

交換プログラムに選ばれるのが難しいかやさしいかは、大学によって違うが、一般的に言えば、申し込む学生が多ければ多いほど、選ばれるのが難しくなる。 I've checked online but I can't seem to find a proper explanation on how かは is being used here. Individually, I know they mean ...
3
votes
1answer
91 views

About a line in a TV drama which is hard to understand

In the 2nd episode of "Tokyo Love Story", from 26:55 to 27:00 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FNW0VEvfIbU#t=26m50s 「いやだね、この?」 What is the word/phrase after 「この」?
4
votes
3answers
151 views

Should 「ソウル」 be pronounced as “so u ru” or “so: ru”?

According to the ipadic attached to Mecab, it's "so u ru". According to the bccwj dict attached to Julius, it's "so: ru". Which one is correct? Or are they both OK?
1
vote
0answers
70 views

I have a puzzling question about Japanese pronouncaiton [closed]

The Hepburn rōmaji is more famous than kunrei-shiki rōmaji in spelling around the world because of its close pronunciation to English and the convenience of reading for foreigners. However, Hepburn ...
1
vote
2answers
216 views

「写真は良い思い出になります。」 “Pictures make for great souvenirs”?

I was going through some Japanese phrases when this came up: 「写真は良い思い出になります。」 According to my limited Japanese knowledge, that means "Pictures become great memories." However, the translation present ...
5
votes
3answers
572 views

How do you translate “My hovercraft is full of eels”?

The good old nonsense phrase of foreign languages is Monty Python's classic "My hovercraft is full of eels". Accordingly in Japanese one of the first things I learned was "私のホバークラフトはうなぎがいっぱいです". ...
1
vote
1answer
240 views

Japanese grammar structure order

Everything I have known about Japanese grammar structure till now is S-O-V. Japanese is S-O-V language. But what's about adj? Adverb?... Something like that. Of couse that I did some research about ...
9
votes
2answers
388 views

What is the difference between all the weather words: 気象{きしょう}, 天気{てんき} and 天候{てんこう}?

Dictionary (at least Jisho and WWWJDIC) defines them as: 気象{きしょう} = weather, climate 天気{てんき} = weather, the elements 天候{てんこう} = weather They all have quite similar definitions, so I don't quite ...
9
votes
2answers
237 views

What does it mean when newspapers give furigana for 常用{じょうよう} kanji?

In these following examples, a few words are given furigana: シドニー立てこもり、治安部隊が突入 人質?担架で救出 年賀状家族や友達へ投函 金剛峯寺にゴボウ奉納 黒河道世界遺産目指し So, it looks like that furigana is provided when a 人名用{じんめいよう} kanji needs ...
5
votes
2answers
165 views

Is 四分の一 a natural way of referring to “a quarter” as in “a three-month duration”?

Is 四分の一 a natural way of referring to "a quarter" as in "a three-month duration" (usually e.g. January-March, April-June, July-September, or October-November) in Japanese? Japanese Stack Overflow ...
4
votes
1answer
104 views

order of words in a sentence

I am a beginner in Japanese. I want to say "There is a car, that I want to show you." There is a car, should be: 車があります I want to show you: 私はあなたに見せたい。 (may be? Is this right?) I want to show you ...
1
vote
2answers
114 views

confusion with location words

I'm learning from the "Japanese from zero" course (currently book 2). It translates the following sentence: Konbiniの ひだりうしろに ほんやが あります as There is a convenience store behind the bookstore on the left....
3
votes
1answer
202 views

How to understand the meaning of 愛{いと}しさ

I know that from adjective we can make adjectival noun like: 高{たか}い -> 高さ - means high and hight. But how to understand/translate the word 愛しさ? I heard it in one of C-ute songs.
4
votes
2answers
159 views

何も means 'Nothing' instead of 'What also'

I recently learnt that 「何も」 means 'nothing' (e.g. 「何も怖くないです。」 means 'Nothing scares (me).'). But how do I say 'What else'? (e.g. 'What else goes well with this dress?' or 'What else never dies?)
2
votes
0answers
44 views

。。。を言います 。。。と言います? [duplicate]

I've seen/heard both を言います and と言いますof these used. What is the difference?
2
votes
3answers
5k views

How to convert verbs from polite form to dictionary form?

Does anyone have a good rule for converting to dictionary (u)form from masu form regarding the different verb groups? Most websites start with dictionary and go to masu but I learned starting with ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

The modification target of 忌み嫌われる

The sentence is taken from a fantasy visual novel. 現の神と古の神が相克するこの世界でも類を見ない、 双方にとって、 忌み嫌われる世界の敵 It's a bit unclear for me which clause is modified by the word 「忌み嫌われる」 Does it mean: "The abhorred/...
7
votes
1answer
376 views

How do you indicate line breaks in a poem when it is written without actual line breaks?

In English, if you have a poem, like Roses are red, Violets are blue, Sugar is sweet, And so are you. and you need to write it on just one line (for reasons of space or whatever), you ...
10
votes
2answers
409 views

好き【すき】でした。付き【つき】合って【あって】ください。

I found many people say 好きでした when they actually mean 好きです. I think it is short for ずっと好きでした. I know ずっと~していた and ずっと~している can well mean the same, but I still do not know the nuance between 好きでした and ...
5
votes
4answers
203 views

Pronunciation of 九

The dictionary I'm using lists two common pronunciations of 「九」: 「きゅう」 and 「く」. I've usually heard it as 「きゅう」 before, but when saying 「9時」, it always seems to be 「くじ」. Is there a rule to this?
4
votes
1answer
221 views

How does the order of place and subject affect the meaning of a sentence using the verb iru

Consider the two sentences: うちに犬がいます。 uchi-ni inu-ga imasu 犬がうちにいます。 inu-ga uchi-ni imasu Is it correct to translate these as "There is a dog at home" "The dog is at ...
1
vote
2answers
116 views

What does it mean when a number is followed by こ

れいぞうこ の なか に ケーキ は 3こ ありました. せんしゅう 、かんじ を 20こ おぼえ ました. In the above examples, why does こ come after the number? Is it a counter? If yes, at what instances can it be used? If not, please ...

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