8
votes
2answers
237 views

How does the intonation of ありがとう vary between dialects?

I recall in my speaking/listening class last semester in Japan, when we were discussing proper intonation in the standard dialect, that the intonation of ありがとう varied rather widely between dialects ...
2
votes
1answer
121 views

Pronunciation of interpoint when listing items

話者の希望・意向を表す文や働きかけの文は来ない。 This is a case when interpoint (中黒) is used for listing like a conjunction. I wonder how would a native speaker pronounce such an expression? Simply きぼういこう きぼう (pause) いこう ...
10
votes
2answers
414 views

Do “direct object を” and “directional を” occupy the same slot?

A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar (ADoBJG) lists more than one を particle. In particular: On page 347, it lists o1, a particle which marks a direct object. On page 349, it lists o2, a particle ...
2
votes
2answers
259 views

using 美化語 in 謙譲語 verb forms does not make sense, right?

So, 美化語 is used to create honorifics: お名前 ご注文 etc. But, the standard way to create the 謙譲語 form of verbs is: お+[verb stem] + いたします That does not make logical sense to modify the action that you are ...
3
votes
3answers
365 views

へうげもの - Hyouge Mono?

There's this manga that is called へうげもの. However, this name is romanized as Hyouge Mono. Although I know little Japanese, I think the kana there spell something like Heuge Mono. Why does this ...
2
votes
1answer
171 views

Unusual dakutens and つ instead of っ

As I read 「ノルウェイの森」 by 村上春樹, I noticed some words that are probably mistyped. しかしそのおかけでクラスの中で僕の立場はもっと孤立したものになった。 Shouldn't it be そのおかげで? A few more examples: 「...」と彼は黒いボストン・バックに衣類やノートを詰めこみながら言った。 ...
5
votes
2answers
333 views

I am wondering if someone can shed light on this tweet from Japan?

A friend of mine recently translated a Japanese article from Japan's October issue of An An magazine and sent her a tweet in English telling her that it was completed. The author replied with the ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

What's the short way to say “me too” and “me (n)either”?

I am just learning about the も particle and the textbook has examples like this: やまださんはがくせいです。わたしもがくせいです。 Yamada is a student. I am also a student. I am wondering whether the repetition of ...
3
votes
1answer
139 views

Is the Ainu name for every part of the body monosyllabic?

I've heard a friend say that the Ainu word for every part of the human body is monosyllabic, and that all words in Ainu are made up of the syllables from those words. Is either claim true?
1
vote
1answer
126 views

となし in 「往{ゆ}け八紘を宇{いえ}となし」

I'm currently listening to 「愛国行進曲」, which is apparently a Shōwa-era patriotic song. It is written in a rather confusing mix of modern and Classical Japanese, but I think I can understand most of it ...
10
votes
2answers
612 views

When is 「だ/である」required between a noun and the quotation particle と?

Note: Edits in response to comments have been added in italics The sentence prompting this question is: 時下ますますご清栄のことと、お喜び申し上げます Which I have always "loosely" taken to mean: I am glad to ...
4
votes
1answer
401 views

Why is だ used for な adjectives?

I've always compared な adjectives to some abstract harder type of adjective, and I think I learned formally what the difference is, kind of, but I've forgotten. In any case, I know there are nouns ...
4
votes
2answers
357 views

Interpretation of 思われる (spontaneous or passive?)

My understanding is that 思われる, in addition to being the passive form of 思う, can also be used in the sense of "to spontaneously think; to appear". 北米では通常スカートは女性がはくものと思われている。 In North America a ...
6
votes
1answer
800 views

Etymology of transitive/intransitive verb pairs

Many verbs come in pairs, frequently but not always transitive/intransitive pairs. These verbs generally have multiple okurigana characters, but according to my dictionary one of the pair was formerly ...
3
votes
2answers
177 views

「たくさん」 is technically, but not practically, a na-nominal (形容動詞) , right?

Dictionaries have 「たくさん」 listed as being either a noun or 形容動詞。Googling "たくさんな" returns only 190,000 hits; none of the top 20 pages are professional websites. Rather, they are only blogs. My ...
1
vote
2answers
229 views

Meaning of ようにできる

A sentence from Kanji in Context: 人にはそれぞれ長短があって、それで世の中はうまくいくようにできているのです。 I get that it means something like everyone has individual strengths and weaknesses, and thus the world can go smoothly. ...
3
votes
1answer
164 views

which are the technical names for these verb transforms?

what are the Japanese, and English, technical terms for these verb transforms: 読める、買える、書ける、... and this: 読まれる、買われる、書かれる、... and this: 読ませる、買わせる、書かせる、... Is there a standard term that textbooks use ...
4
votes
1answer
146 views

What is the grammatical interpretation of じゃ ありません?

I have learned in school that じゃ ありましん is the "non-past negative" conjugation of です. Example: 私は日本人じゃありません。 "I am not Japanese." I have noticed that じゃ ありません contains the pronunciation of ...
1
vote
1answer
997 views

Negation with ではありません vs. じゃない

I tried to say "I'm not a high school student". But I read you can use じゃない to 'deny' something. In this case which one should I use? でわありません or じゃない? 私はこうこうの学生でわありません。or 私はこうこうの学生じゃないです。?
5
votes
1answer
124 views

Replacing a negative nominalised verb with a ない-form

人と比べるのではなく、過去の自分と比べる。 Do not compare yourself to other people, compare yourself to your past self. Without any change in meaning, (though I guess it would be less formal in tone), could the ...
0
votes
1answer
140 views

Why is つきあう typically written in kana?

The kanji version 付き合う contains only elementary characters with their usual readings. Is there a reason why it's still usually written in kana? Is there a difference in nuance when written in kanji? ...
7
votes
5answers
366 views

Are there any rules for choosing between おお and おう?

Am I correct assuming that both おお and おう are homophones in Japanese - both being pronounced as long o? I suspect I am, since that's what I'm indirectly reading in various tutorials. If so, are there ...
6
votes
1answer
283 views

Is there something omitted after だか in this sentence?

The following paragraph is from page 20 of 涼宮ハルヒの憂鬱:  ...
7
votes
1answer
457 views

Why does きいろ mean yellow rather than green?

I know that most of "why" questions don't make much sense as far as linguistics are concerned but I'll ask anyway. I know that き means a tree. いろ means color. It doesn't take a genius to guess that ...
9
votes
1answer
778 views

Which counter did you use for counting TV series episodes?

I want to say "I saw 10 episodes", but i don't find the appropriate counter. I may use "つ" counter (十エピソードを見ました), but it's not very classy. Thanks a lot :)
4
votes
2answers
128 views

Use of に to mark the caller of 電話がかかる

Is it okay to use に to mark the caller when using 電話がかかる? i.e. A received a call from B would be AはBに電話がかかった。 Google seems to indicate that から is a much more popular choice than に. I find it a ...
5
votes
3answers
301 views

What's the female equivalent for the informal ぼく?

What's the female equivalent for the informal ぼく? I've heard that females will tend to use わたし, but then it's said to be formal. Doesn't there exist a female informal "I"?
3
votes
2answers
3k views

R sound vs L sound

First, I'd like to mention that I've seen this question, which is related but doesn't quite seem to be a duplicate. I've covered some Hiragana lessons and it seems there is no L in Japanese. The ...
10
votes
4answers
938 views

is it offensive to say あなた?

My teacher says that we should avoid あなた, like わたし, which could be taken off. Following this, I try to refer to the second person by the name: 加藤さんの趣味は何ですか. But there are situations where we forget ...
3
votes
1answer
111 views

Is 窘める ever read なだめる?

I found the following in a book I'm reading: As far as I'm aware, 窘める is read たしなめる and means "to scold, rebuke, admonish". 宥める, on the other hand, is read なだめる and means "to soothe, placate". ...
3
votes
2answers
260 views

Can ぼくたち (bokutachi) be used for mixed-gender group?

*disclaimer:*I'am still learning hiragana, so forgive me for any wrong spelling I've learnt that normally only males use ぼく (boku). What about ぼくたち (bokutachi)? Should it normally be reserved for ...
13
votes
2answers
301 views

How do I know when to read the kanji 抱 as 「だ・く」, and when to read it as 「いだ・く」, or even 「うだ・く」?

This sentence was in a grammar textbook: 彼{かれ}は同僚{どうりょう}にライバル意識{いしき}、ひいては殺意{さつい}すら抱いていた ... it means: "He regarded his colleague as a rival, even to the point of considering murder." My ...
0
votes
1answer
152 views

history of learning japanese

Now, we have lots of resources for learning Japanese - tons of textbooks, dictionaries, audio and video recordings, educational software etc. But in the past - How did Europeans first approach ...
6
votes
5answers
494 views

Does Japanese have any infixes?

In English, we have prefixes, like "pre-"; suffixes, like "-ize"; and arguably, expletives that function as infixes (one classic example is "abso-fucking-lutely"). In Japanese, we also have ...
10
votes
1answer
256 views

How similar is the Japanese spoken in Taiwan to the Japanese spoken in Japan?

I've heard that Japanese is spoken by some Taiwanese people who were old enough to have lived during Japanese rule, along with some people who've learnt it for other reasons. For younger people, I've ...
6
votes
1answer
301 views

Shorthand for [傘]{kasa} or normal use? 仐

I was at a Japanese class and saw what I thought was a mistake, or at best shorthand for the character [傘]{かさ} -> 仐 I thought the four ([人]{ひと}) had been forgotten but my Japanese teacher told me this ...
0
votes
0answers
45 views

what is the difference beween おんなみたい、おんならしい and おんなっぽい。 [duplicate]

what is the difference beween おんなみたい、おんならしい and おんなっぽい。 could any one please clear the difference between them with example.
5
votes
1answer
862 views

How is 空気を読む translated into English?

I've often seen 'read the air' (literal translation) or 'read between the lines' but is there a better rendition of this concept in English? Or does it just not exist?
1
vote
3answers
155 views

Use of に in 人間に

人間に[上下]{じょうげ}はない。 People are equal. Why the use of に after 人間? Are we treating 人間 as a "location" where 上下 is absent?
2
votes
1answer
218 views

Verb in te-form with 中に, as in “通って中に”

I have started to read a novel for practice. I came across these sentences. I can't make sense of the part 通って中に. 少年はあそこ一夜過ごすことに決めた。彼は羊の群れが、壊れかけた門を通って中に、入るのを見届けてから、夜中に羊が迷い出さないように、何本かの棒を門にわたした。 I ...
7
votes
3answers
439 views

Teaching the difference between “see” and “she” in English

I've been teaching ESL for over 30 years, but for the last three I've had almost exclusively Japanese students (I teach mostly 1-on-1 classes over Skype, to students from High School to Business ...
4
votes
1answer
212 views

What's the difference between 学科, 教科 and 科目

I've seen all three used in somewhat similar situations. What are the differences between them, and in which cases should i use one over another?
5
votes
1answer
155 views

Is 圧力 countable?

Consider the following sentence (emphasis mine): ひょっとしたら僕が​圧力の一つや二つをかけられて​いることも知っているのかもしれない。 The bolded part is kind of confusing me. I get that 圧力をかけられる means "to be pressured" or "to have ...
2
votes
1answer
141 views

Confusion between nouns and adverbs in あと一部

この仕事はあと一部を残すだけだ。 Only one part of the job remains. Does one think of あと (remainder) as a noun (and object of 残す) and 一部 as a counter/adverb, or is あと the adverb and 一部 the noun here?
5
votes
1answer
144 views

Are non-Japanese political party names translated, or transliterated?

Are the names of new political parties, especially in English-speaking countries, typically translated, or transliterated? I looked at the Japanese language Wikipedia template for Australian ...
1
vote
2answers
189 views

Premature optimization is the root of all evil [closed]

"Premature optimization is the root of all evil" I would like to translate this quote into Japanese for a personal project. For further understanding of the meaning, Donald Knuth wrote this phrase in ...
1
vote
2answers
325 views

The origin of しなさい

勉強しなさいよ! i know what this means.. but what is the origin of しなさい ? Does it come from する (to do verb) ?? Is it short form of something? or what?
5
votes
1answer
296 views

What is the difference between using を and と with the verb 言う?

I apologize if this is a basic question, but it's something I've never been entirely clear on. When using the verb 言う (to say), I can never figure out whether to use the particle -と or the particle ...
2
votes
3answers
112 views

Nuance due to absence of は

その帽子に赤いマフラーが似合いそうだ。 A red muffler seems to go well with that hat. Is there a difference in nuance between the above sentence and the following one? その帽子には赤いマフラーが似合いそうだ。 I get that it's ...
1
vote
2answers
244 views

What is this dash-like punctuation mark?

Here is a piece of text from 「ノルウェイの森」by Haruki Murakami: この寮の唯一の問題点はその根本的なうさん臭さにあった。寮はあるきわめて右翼的な人物を中心とする正体不明の財団法人によって運営されており、その運営方針は――もちろん僕の目から見ればということだが――かなり奇妙に歪んだものだった。 How are these things ...

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