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This has been bothering me for months now. As far as I know,「くらい」and「ぐらい」are used to express approximate values. I want to ask how long something happened exactly. I know that I can use「ちょうど」and「正に」、but every example that I have using that has also used one of the phrases of approximation.

i.e.: 「どのくらい休みましたか?」 「どれくらいそこにいた?」 「正にどのくらい寝た?」 Examples such as these also use「くらい」which, as far as I am aware, is approximate. It's contradictory to「正確に」。 Thanks in advance.

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    Could you include some example sentences? I'm not sure what you mean. Jun 28 at 11:57
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    正にどのくらい寝た? makes no sense.
    – aguijonazo
    Jun 29 at 1:09
  • @aguijonazo That was to elucidate the issue; yes. Jun 30 at 21:34
  • @DeityofAutomation: No, the sentence doesn’t mean what you want it to mean to elucidate the issue. It makes no sense as it is. If you saw 正にどのくらい somewhere, 正に must have modified something other than どのくらい in the sentence. For example, 正にどのくらい寝たかが大事だ can be rephrased to 正にそのことが大事だ.
    – aguijonazo
    Jul 1 at 0:10
  • @aguijonazo I wasn't saying that it does. It was simply an example of including both for demonstrative purposes. I am fully aware that it makes no sense, and that is precisely the issue. Jul 1 at 4:30
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You can always rephrase the question to not use ぐらい/くらい, and ask for a specific unit of time. Examples:

  1. 何分休みましたか? - How many minutes did you rest?
  2. 何時間寝ましたか? - How many hours did you sleep?
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How about using だけ, as in:

(正確に、)どれだけ寝ましたか?
(正確に、)どれだけ(の時間)休みましたか?
(正確に、)どれだけ(の)時間がかかりましたか?

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