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Oct
30
comment Addressing children in Japanese
Current answer seems to be attracting about as many upvotes as downvotes, so I'm reluctant to accept it - can anyone else clarify, please?
Oct
23
comment Is there a reliable translation of the kangxi radicals?
"translations of the radicals" This is because radicals do not always have consistent inherent meaning. They don't have translations - at best they have vague historical (maybe now extinct) connotations. Something that might be potentially interesting and useful is this kanji etymology dictionary: kanjinetworks.com/eng/kanji-dictionary/… . Try entering both 癶 and istrasci's example 発, and you'll see that modern meanings of kanji and original meanings of radicals are only very tenuously and vaguely related.
Oct
23
comment “Would ____?” -のだろう or -おう/-こう/etc
But requests and suggestions are different things, even in English! You're going to have to give us some full example sentences. But in addition to dainichi's suggestions, here are a couple more. For requests, you might want to consider 「(食べて)くださいませんか?」 (a polite "would you mind (=do me the favour of) eating?"). For suggestions, "let's eat!" is 「食べましょう!」. You can soften this by adding a ね onto the end, or turning it into a question ("shall we eat?" 「食べましょうか?」). You can make all of these more informal by replacing the polite-form 食べましょう with the plain-form 食べよう.
Oct
22
comment “Would ____?” -のだろう or -おう/-こう/etc
What do you mean by "would you...?" or "why don't you...?"? These feel like two different things to me. Can you give a couple of example sentences? To me, 「食べようか?」 sounds like "shall we eat(, then)?", and 「食べるのだろうか?」 sounds like "(I wonder whether) he (or whoever) eats?".
Oct
22
comment Addressing children in Japanese
Thanks for the answer! But my curiosity compels me: what do you mean by "the children know it and they won't forgive you"?!
Oct
22
asked Addressing children in Japanese
Oct
21
answered Problems with particles
Oct
1
awarded  Scholar
Oct
1
comment Sentence-final 「ど~」?
Thank you, Jesse!
Oct
1
comment Sentence-final 「ど~」?
Thank you, Teno!
Oct
1
accepted Sentence-final 「ど~」?
Sep
30
asked Sentence-final 「ど~」?
Sep
30
comment Is ruby text essential?
@phoenixheart6 Yes. (Well, in the context of Japanese. More generally it just means pronunciation help next to a Chinese character. There are furigana-like systems in place in Chinese too, e.g. Pinyin and Zhuyin, which sometimes occur as ruby text. And in older Korean texts, you get hangul occurring as ruby text on hanja.)
Sep
29
comment It's time to [verb]
@Teno: read literally, both of yadokari's sentences mean the same thing. The difference is simply that the one with "should" is very uncommon, because the "should" is always implied. This has the effect of emphasising "should" more than you might expect: "he has a lot of work, and he really should do it". Yadokari is (correctly) interpreting this heavy emphasis as an implication of "I don't think he will" or "he never does his work" by the speaker. Perhaps this is an answer to yadokari too: you're being confused by a peculiarity of English that doesn't carry across to Japanese. :)
Sep
29
comment Is ruby text essential?
The ruby text adds nothing to that sentence for me. I don't know whether there are examples of sentences where the ruby text is important, but I sort of can't imagine so. Still, I'm not an expert on anything here, so I'll just leave this as a comment.
Sep
24
comment Why is 礼 honorific in 「お礼を申し上げます/give my thanks [to someone]」?
They are indeed "my" thanks, but お serves more functions than just distinguishing between grammatical person. It's often just a word beautifier. Here's a good place to start: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keigo#Honorific_prefixes
Sep
22
comment Why does the g tends to sound more like a m or n?
I realise this is a rather abrupt answer, and dainichi and Flaw have given better and far more complete answers than me, but: the g sounds more like an n because it's not a g. It is written as g (by Westerners!), but that's simply a polite and convenient lie - just like the 'f' in ふ, the 'h' in ひ, the 'sh' in し, the 'ch' in ち, the 'u' in the whole う-row of the kana table, and so on. These are all approximations, and Japanese people do not think of these sounds in the same way as you do. Sometimes, even when they overlap, they don't overlap completely. I think this is very important to know.
Sep
20
comment Explain the meaning of という or と + いう?
(The etymology, of course, is と (quoting particle) + 言う (saying) + こと (thing, matter).)
Sep
20
comment Explain the meaning of という or と + いう?
ということ is what you should be looking at. It turns "すぐに" (with quotation marks) into a noun. So it means something like "it needs improvements, but that's not a 'すぐに'-saying-thing". In more natural English, "it needs improvements, but that's not to say (that it needs them) very soon".
Sep
19
comment How to use に with “masu-stem (連用形 stem) + に + Verb” structure
Oh, sorry, I don't mean to say that I think your sentences are wrong. Of course they're not. Rather, I think that the に in your first three sentences (which is easy to explain as a suffix turning adjectives into adverbs) is fundamentally different to the に in your fourth sentence (which is the interesting and mysterious case).