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Why do people have to add "o" to "namae" like "Onamae wa?"

1 Answer 1

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お and ご are prefixes used to make a word sound more respectful/polite.

お prefixes words with kunyomi readings such as:

  • お客さん
  • お手洗い
  • お茶

ご prefixes words with onyomi readings such as:

  • ご飯
  • ご利用
  • ご注文
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  • But namae is kun reading, isn't it? Mar 30, 2016 at 3:58
  • My bad, I mixed up the names.
    – agnesi
    Mar 30, 2016 at 4:01
  • It should be noted that there are exceptions, like 「お茶{ちゃ}」「お誕生日{たんじょうび}」「ごもっとも」「ごゆっくり」.
    – user1478
    Mar 30, 2016 at 18:41
  • Looking more closely at your answer, I see you've listed お客さん and お茶, but きゃく and ちゃ are on'yomi, not kun'yomi.
    – user1478
    Mar 30, 2016 at 20:03

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