3
votes
2answers
392 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
212 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
1k 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
155 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
186 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
2k 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
131 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?
8
votes
1answer
337 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
473 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
444 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 ...
5
votes
3answers
505 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
845 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
468 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
261 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
50 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
295 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
176 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
410 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
235 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
338 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
564 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
479 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
269 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
435 views

Can に mean the same thing as から?

あの野郎、どんだけジークさんに恩を受けたと思っていやがるんだ! In this sentence, does に mean the same thing as から ? Thank you very much for help!
10
votes
1answer
450 views

Which readings are used for 漢文?

If I am reading a Chinese text to a Japanese audience, how can I know which reading to use for each character? Of the 音読み, there can be 呉音, 漢音, and 唐音 to choose from. Also for pronunciation, would ...
4
votes
1answer
432 views

Difference between 「~がる」 and 「~そう」

 「~がる」と「~そう」の違いは何でしょうか。感覚的に同じではないことは分かりますが、説明はできません。どうも「~がる」形はもはや口語ではあまり使われないように感じます(「怖がる」「怖そう」などの完全に意味が変わる形容詞を除く。)。そういったレジスター(言語使用域)の違いも含めての回答を期待しています。もしこの質問がDuplicateであれば、元の質問を教えていただければ幸いです。
3
votes
2answers
323 views

The 阝-radical (or 部首?) in 部 and 陪

In 部, the right side radical is called the large village radical. For 陪, the left side radical is called the small village radical. Why are their names different on different sides even though both ...
5
votes
1answer
304 views

What's the difference between 欲{ほっ}する and 欲しがる?

Is there one? One of my dictionaries lists them as 欲{ほっ}する → to desire/to want 欲しがる → to desire/to want/to wish for/to covet Only the latter sounds like it includes more "bad"/selfish ...
10
votes
1answer
428 views

What is the difference between 部屋 and 室?

When referring to a room (in a building), what is the difference in usage, if any? I looked up the definitions and checked some sample phrases, but I could not see any real difference. I usually read ...
3
votes
1answer
917 views

Can うちは mean the same thing as うちに?

Tell me please in the sentence below, can うちは means the same as うちに? Or it's just うち like "we" ? Thank you very much for help!
5
votes
3answers
270 views

What is くん doing in these sentences?

I have come across two sentences in a manga that is using くん in a way that I can't seem to find any information on, in both my books and online. I am guessing this may be some sort of slang, odd ...
6
votes
1answer
131 views

How to express the concept of negation in mathematics

I have been reading the PHP manual in both Japanese and English and have reached the part about operators. In the 代数演算子 section they talk about 加算, 減算 etc, and have a table showing all of the 代数演算子 ...
5
votes
3answers
204 views

How to read the Modulo operator in a formula

Because I am a programmer, I have been reading tutorials and manuals about programming in Japanese. For the most part I am ok with all of the terminology, both from the computing side and maths side. ...
8
votes
1answer
473 views

どうか, どうにか, どうかして - differences?

I was just wondering what the essential differences are between these and how I would use them in everyday speech. Thank you.
6
votes
1answer
978 views

“If I may ask a question, …”

Our teacher taught us to ask for the permission to ask a question by saying「質問してもいいですか。」. Now I'm writing her an email, and would like to say something along the lines of "If I may ask a question, ...
4
votes
1answer
265 views

Is たとえば the ば form of a verb?

たとえば looks like it should be the ば form of a verb, but is that true? I know of the word 例える, but the ば form of this would be 例えれば. The phrase 例えるなら also exists, which would be a cousin if it were ...
3
votes
1answer
468 views

When speaking with client, how to say “I will tell my coworker”

I have found this in a phone usage manual (電話対応マニュアル) written by a Japanese person: かしこまりました。必ず田中に申し伝えます。それでは失礼いたします。 (speaking to customer over the phone) Understood. I will tell Tanaka (my ...
5
votes
1answer
380 views

What is the meaning of から here?

Tell me please, what から means in his sentence? If I'm guessing corrctly it would translate something like "She fall on her face really hard", but still... would ”顔面に全力で” be incorrect here? Sentence: ...
3
votes
2answers
306 views

Is there a Japanese phrase equivalent to “crisis of faith”

I am wondering if there is a way to describe this concept in Japanese, or an equivalent phrase. According to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crisis_of_faith it is a mostly western concept (if you ...
4
votes
2answers
223 views

Why choose 念入{ねんい}り over まともに in this question?

My JLPT book has this question: ドライブの前{まえ}に(a.まともに b.念入{ねんい}りに)車{くるま}の点検{てんけん}をした。 I chose a, thinking that a reasonable translation was, "Before driving, do a proper check of the car." The ...
3
votes
2answers
239 views

Does 凝{こ}る mean “absorbed in” or “artistic” in this sentence?

My JLPT textbook gives me this example sentence to explain the meaning of 凝{こ}る: 釣{つ}りに凝{こ}る The book provides a translation, which is, "be absorbed in fishing." Later, in a test question, ...
2
votes
2answers
542 views

How can a friendly person be “hard to approach”?

I have this phrase in my JLPT textbook: 私{わたし}の上司{じょうし}は気{き}さくで近寄{ちかよ}りがたい My translation, which must be incorrect in some way, is, "my superior is hard to approach as he/she is friendly." It ...
4
votes
1answer
456 views

When to use にしたら when to use には?

I don't get the difference in meaning between には and にしたら like in this sentence from my textbook: 大きすぎる親の期待は、子供にしたら苦痛だ。 Expectations of parents that are too big become agony for the children. ...
0
votes
1answer
168 views

What is the meaning of ように here?

Can someone tell me what ように means in this phrase? あの人にそんな秘密があるようには全く見えないがな。
3
votes
1answer
327 views

Combining two い-adjectives without using て

In the JLU chat, Flaw recently typed up some instructions printed on a Japanese product. Here's what they said: 直射日光の当たらない涼しい所に保管してください It appears that 所 is modified by two phrases: ...
5
votes
2answers
298 views

Meaning of あくまで in あくまで私個人の意見です

What is the meaning of あくまで in the sentence あくまで私個人の意見です ? ALC: back and edge, consistently GJiten: to the end; to the bitter end; to the last; stubbornly; persistently; to the utmost What nuance is ...
14
votes
2answers
368 views

Is there a specific time to pronounce 日本, にほん/にっぽん?

Are the two used completely interchangeably or are there specific situations where one might be used more than the other? For example I've never heard 日本語 said にっぽんご.
5
votes
1answer
237 views

Is 青色をしている different from 青い?

I recently learned 青色をしている as a synonym for 青い, but I don't have a good idea of what the difference is, or even if there's any difference at all. On chat, Flaw suggested the difference might be ...
4
votes
1answer
427 views

The uses & etymology of で

In Japanese, the particle で seems to have multiple uses: Instrumental: 車{くるま}で大阪{おおさか}に行{い}った。 "I went to Osaka by car." Locative: 図書館{としょかん}で数学{すうがく}を勉強{べんきょう}している。 "I'm studying math in the ...

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