I've encountered this word several times already but never really knew what it meant. Then I just saw this on twitter:


What is a ダンディー? What kind of clothes does a ダンディー wear?

Can someone explain to me how you would be able to recognize a ダンディ in a crowd of people?

  • 1
    Who downvoted this question. State your reasons. If you were going to downvote it you should have done it earlier. Jul 25, 2011 at 7:13
  • 7
    This has been pointed many times already, but JLU is not your personal Tweet-translation service. If you are going to query the JLU community for help with your Japanese, the least you can do is have the courtesy to format your questions in a way that is of general interest to other people. Regarding the particulars of your question: 1) ダンディー is 'dandy' and the rest is down to English Language and Usage 2) Your subquestion: "Who is タモリさん?" has nothing to do on JLU (I just edited it out to avoid further answers on that part).
    – Dave
    Jul 25, 2011 at 9:34
  • @languagehacker I have deleted your answer to this question. Its tone was unsalvagably rude and could only serve to further inflame those who are already upset over this post for other reasons. Please try and be more civil, and try to reflect on why your recent questions are getting the kind of feedback they are, and what you can do to ask questions that will be better-received by the community. Thanks!
    – Amanda S
    Jul 25, 2011 at 14:37
  • That's wack! That's hella not right. For anyone that finds this, my answer basically said that the right translation for ダンディ is metrosexual. Think about it. english.stackexchange.com/questions/35515/… And if you can read Japanese, look at this description. detail.chiebukuro.yahoo.co.jp/qa/question_detail/q1367347408 Jul 25, 2011 at 19:06
  • 1
    Shouldn't the close reason be "general reference"? It's not unimaginable for someone in the future to wonder about the meaning of ダンディ in Japanese, and actually there are already some questions about the word on chiebukuro, etc.
    – ento
    Jul 26, 2011 at 7:05

2 Answers 2


As you have it in the quote, it is ダンディー. You have a typo. But since you are doing the same mistake three times, it looks like you are a little careless. It is a borrowed from the English 'dandy'. Dandy wear is gentleman clothing, typically in black. タモリさん is one of the big three male talents/commedians in Japan. He looks like this. His real name is 森田 (morita), and as I answered in one of your previous questions, he played around with his name: mori + ta => tamori.

P.S. Do you ever read anything other than twitter?

  • The word dandy is old and no one uses it. Do you or anyone else have any idea what the modern English equivalent is? What could Mao's connection be to タモリさん? Jul 25, 2011 at 3:54
  • @language_hacker To my understanding, dandy is close to a "gentleman". I don't know what Mao is.
    – user458
    Jul 25, 2011 at 3:57
  • 3
    At this point, we are squarely having a discussion about English words. I don't see any evidence that the Japanese katakana version is any different from the original meaning of 'dandy', which is still a perfectly normal word to use in English... @Language: I would recommend you peruse Wikipedia or a dictionary, regarding the use of the word 'dandy' and that should answer your question.
    – Dave
    Jul 25, 2011 at 6:36
  • 1
    Oh yeah, and Mark, old people don't use dandy in reference to clothes. They might say something like "that's just dandy!" but they wouldn't say they are going to dress like a dandy lol. Jul 25, 2011 at 7:36
  • 2
    @language: frankly, your antagonistic tone and attitude do not incline me to spend any more time addressing your issues. I will reiterate by saying that 1) 'dandy' is a perfectly fine, if literary, word in English, that is not even close to obsolete status 2) you obviously still have no clue what its meaning and usage in English are, as illustrated by your misguided counter-examples (by now, you have no excuses for not picking a dictionary/searching wikipedia and educating yourself on the word). This makes both your question and subsequent bickering mostly irrelevant.
    – Dave
    Jul 25, 2011 at 9:29

It's in Katakana, so it's a borrowed word. It's from the English language.

Have you watched some old cowboy movie where one of the badguys looks at a woman and says: "She's a dandy," and then he spits through his tobacco-stained teeth into a spittoon? Stands up and harasses her?

Think about the kind of woman the cowboy is describing in contrast to himself. She's classy, she's dressed well, she smells good, she's clean, etc.

It's a depricated (more in the US than in Britain) use of the English language, perhaps for this reason and perhaps not, I think. Anyway, it means 'classy'. In Japan, it happens to extend only to men. Japanese words are often misconstrued and departed from their borrowed context. Since the language is old, it would take some investigation to discover if dandy was originally meant to be used for men or women, and why it's only used for men now. It definitely means "classy", though.

I know what it looks like because I like fashion. It's kind of subjective, but you would definitely know it if you saw it from the right vantage point. If you stand on a high rise (at least two stories above a crowd), and you look down at the crowd, notice how men who wear black pants and white shirts stand out a little bit. They are dandy men. Many men wear brown suits, grey suits, blue suits, purple shirts, etc. They want to look different. For a dandy, black-and-white is just fine. Same thing every day? No problem. - A Dandy Man.

That's dandy thinking for you.

  • Do the men in these pictures look like dandies? google.com/… Jul 25, 2011 at 21:12
  • A few of them. Think Dick Tracy. Part ホスト, but not so young. Think Elvis impersonator. Slick looking, but a little plain--everything except the hair, that is. Plain, but don't touch the hair! ;) Kind of a hybrid 50's slicker/plain clothes gentleman look. If you ask any Japanese woman what a ダンディー person is, they're going to say one of two things: a) "They only wear black and white," or b) "They're older than 50." It's because it's like a plain-clothes gentleman. The kind of guy who you couldn't imagine wearing a logo shirt, but maybe in the distant past he wore jeans and a white t. Jul 26, 2011 at 3:04
  • He's kind of like an old man (at LEAST 40) who is just a little too respectable, so it's okay for him to have a beard. This looks a LOT like a dandy: linguakonzept.de/Praxis/Wild%20West%20Heroes/heroes/…! :) Jul 26, 2011 at 3:06
  • You should also probably know that a woman would never call anyone but her boyfriend a dandy guy. You know, he's kind of a cool, sweet, strong, hero type. Jul 26, 2011 at 13:26

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .