These three words give me a hard time: めちゃ, めちゃめちゃ, めちゃくちゃ. Do they have distinct meanings? Do they differ in nuance? What do they actually mean.

Weblio refers all three words back to a single meaning of めちゃくちゃ, but Jisho has multiple meanings for each word.

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    There are also むちゃ, むちゃくちゃ. Roughly むちゃくちゃ=めちゃめちゃ=めちゃくちゃ; それは無茶 is ok (unlike それはめちゃ). くちゃくちゃ is a bit different crumpled.
    – sundowner
    Nov 15, 2022 at 12:19

1 Answer 1


めちゃ and めっちゃ work as an adverb (めちゃ走った, めっちゃ面白い) but not as an adjective (めっちゃな話, それはめちゃだ). めちゃくちゃ and めちゃめちゃ work as both an adverb and a na-adjective, but I feel めちゃめちゃ is more common as an adverb.

めちゃくちゃ is already relatively informal, but めちゃめちゃ and め(っ)ちゃ are clearly more colloquial or slangy than めちゃくちゃ. If you used め(っ)ちゃ in a job interview, your education level would be questioned. Basically you can think of めちゃくちゃ as the standard version and the other two as slangy variants.

Meaning-wise, I think there is not a big difference. They all mean something along the lines of crazy, absurd, mad, chaotic, but can also work as an intensifier (like crazy, super, insanely, etc).

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