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I was conversing with my Japanese colleague:

Me: Do you know how much a melon costs in my home country?
Colleague: I do not know.
Me: Take a guess.

I asked him how to say take a guess. He first told me to use 推測{すいそく}してみる, but later retracted and told me to use あててみる. Which one is more natural in day to day conversation?

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I think 当ててみて is more natural than 推測してみて in daily conversations. Maybe you could also say 'どのくらいだと思う?(か、言ってみて。)' or 'いくらくらいだと思う?(か、言ってみて。)'.

  • I often come across the situation where people ask "how old are you", and for fun I always say "take a guess". I use 推測して, for this. Is あててみて more appropriate in that circumstance as well? What are the nuances of 推測 that make it less desirable in conversation? Just too technical sounding? – Questioner Feb 24 '12 at 3:34
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    @DaveMG-san, I'd say (さあ?+)当ててみてください(polite)/当ててみて(casual)/当ててごらん(to a child/your student/maybe someone younger than yourself), or (さあ?+)いくつだと思いますか?(polite)/いくつだと思う?(casual/to a child or your student)/さあ(orさて)、いくつでしょう?(half jokingly). We usually don't say 推測してみて in this situation, probably because the word 推測 sounds a bit too literary for a daily conversation. – user1016 Feb 24 '12 at 5:51

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