I don't know when I have to use totemo and takusan. They both mean "very", don't they?

  • What made you think たくさん means "very"? Can you give an example where たくさん is used as "very"? – Chocolate Apr 18 '17 at 15:06

They both mean "very", don't they?

No, while とても means "very", たくさん does not.

  • たくさん is an adjective, means "a lot of", or "plenty of", and you use it generally for describing noun quantity.

    E.g. たくさんのお金{かね} = a lot of money

  • とても is an adverb modifying adjectives.

    E.g. とてもうれしい = very glad

Both words are used similarly to their English counterparts.

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    In addition, たくさん can be used adverbially like 彼女とたくさん話したい(I want to talk with her a lot). – Yuuichi Tam Apr 18 '17 at 11:43
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    In addition, you can say 私{わたし}は「とても」「たくさん」本{ほん}を持{も}っている。I have tremendously a lot of books. – mackygoo Apr 18 '17 at 12:07
  • @YuuichiTam I can't see how your example is adverbial. You don't say "I want it a lot" – macraf Apr 18 '17 at 12:12
  • @mackygoo I don't understand the intention behind your comment. Do you mind explaining? – macraf Apr 18 '17 at 12:13
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    @mackygoo I just want to say that たくさん is often used adverbially and たくさん本をもっている is more common than たくさんの本を持っている. I think this information is helpful for Japanese learners. Not I want to discuss but add the information. – Yuuichi Tam Apr 19 '17 at 4:42

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