Hirigana: もう一{ひと}つ

Translation: Another; One More

Scenario: I'm drinking with a close friend and we've both finished our beers. I get up to go to the fridge, point to his empty bottle and say "もう一{ひと}つ" with a rising inflection to denote a question (Do you want another beer?).

Question: Would this be grammatically correct (even in a colloquial sense)?

  • I think 2 people already answered theirs, but to me personally, considering you are not a Japanese, they would likely understand you. ( Though as answerers say, in this case, "One more bottle!" is fine thoguh. ) – user7644 Jun 17 '16 at 19:34

You can definitely make yourself understood by saying 「もう1つ?」 with rising intonation, but it's better to use the appropriate counter for bottles ("本"). And we usually add some verb even in the most casual settings.

To your friend, colloquially:

  • もう[1本]{いっぽん}[行]{い}く? (行く ≒ "go on" here)
  • もう1本いる?
  • もう1本[飲]{の}む?

If you have to say this politely:

  • もう1本お[飲]{の}みになりますか?
  • もう1本いかがですか?

In that situation, we would use, "もう[一本]{いっぽん}".

[助数詞]{じょすうし} can be quite confusing even to native Japanese speakers sometimes. Once the beer is poured into a glass, it becomes 「[一杯]{いっぱい}」. I would say 「[一つ]{ひとつ}」 is usually used for solid objects, but it's not applicable to all solid objects, though.

Here are links which might be helpful for you to get an idea of which [助数詞]{じょすうし} should be used in a certain situation: http://kyoan.u-biq.org/ho34-2.html and http://nihonshock.com/2012/04/how-to-use-japanese-counters/

Hope this helps :)

EDIT: The use of 「もう[一つ]{ひとつ}」 in your example situation is not grammatically wrong if the [一つ]{ひとつ} is replaced by [一本]{いっぽん}. Saying 「もう[一本]{いっぽん}いる?」 in the same situation sounds just as natural to Japanese native speakers. But these are very casual/informal, which are completely fine to use to ask your close friend. One way to ask the same question formally (one among many other possible options) would be: 「もう一本いりますか?」

  • 1
    質問は「『もう一つ?』というフレーズが質問の形で使えるかどうか」ですので、「もう一本?」「もう一杯?」等のフレーズが「もう一本いかがですか?」などの意味で使えるかどうか、というところに言及していただけるとありがたいかと存じます。 – Chocolate Jun 16 '16 at 6:01
  • @chocolate 文法的にこの使い方が正しいかどうかを尋ねられているのかとおもったのですが・・・。文法的には、このシチュエーションで、「もう一本?」というのはおかしくないと私は思いました。丁寧にもう一本いるかを尋ねるときのことも書いたほうが良いということですね? – Miki Jun 16 '16 at 6:08
  • あ、なるほど。。多分、「このシチュエーションで使えますよ」って教えて差し上げればよろしいかと。 – Chocolate Jun 16 '16 at 6:19

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