5

So like the title asks, I'm wondering if it's legitimate to say 「意味する」 to mean "to mean". I know 意味 is meaning, and I was wondering what the verb version of 'to mean' would be. An example sentence would be "I didn't mean that." How would I translate that into Japanese? Or is there a different verb I would use?

8

意味する is a stiff transitive verb which means "(for a word/phrase/fact) to mean". Note that the subject cannot be a person or person pronoun like 私. The subject of 意味する is usually a (difficult) word/phrase, sometimes a certain fact or a phenomenon.

  • 曾祖父とは祖父母の父を意味する。
    A grand-grandfather means the father of a grandparent.
  • 祖父母の父を意味する言葉は何ですか?
    What is the word that means the father of a grandparent?
  • 彼が来たということは作戦が成功したということを意味していた。
    The fact that he came meant the mission was successful.

"I didn't mean it" usually translates to そういう意味ではありません, そういうつもりではありません, そうじゃない, etc. If you want to say "(Sorry,) I didn't mean it" after you did something wrong, consider 悪気はなかったんです or そういうつもりではなかったんです. "She means ~" is 彼女が言いたいのは~です, etc.

  • Ahh okay, that's really helpful! 私に教えてくれてありがとうございます!〜 – luna-moon Mar 19 at 18:08

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.