Questions tagged [expressions]

表現. A set phrase used commonly in the Japanese language.

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6
votes
3answers
162 views

Expression for a bad photograph

What are the most common (informal) expressions for a badly taken photo? My first guess was 悪い写真, but searching for that in google finds only scary pictures, so I don't think that it's what I'm ...
6
votes
2answers
160 views

What is the meaning of the expression “コツがいったり”?

I found the expression "コツがいったり" in a tourism advertisement for the 金閣寺 in 京都: シャッター押すのをやめて じっと、まぶたに焼きつけています。 しっかり見る。しっかり感動する。 簡単にみえても、案外、コツがいったりするんです。 From what I can see via web searches, ...
3
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1answer
112 views

Is this a good way to politely refuse to publish an “abstract” option via e-mail? / 丁寧にメールで要旨原稿を掲載することを断る

背景 数ヶ月前、私は地方の学会で学術発表をしました。先日審査の結果を知らされました。結局、通常通りに掲載されることにはならず、要旨としての掲載となるとのことでした。私が掲載を希望するかどうかを尋ねられましたが、私自身は他の研究に集中したいため、要旨原稿の掲載を断るつもりです。 質問 以下の日本語はメールの要旨を書くチャンスを断る表現として、相応しいですか: ○○先生 ...
4
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2answers
229 views

Is the way I'm writing this correct, and is there a better way of writing it?

What I'm trying to say: "If I don't take a break from studying now, I'll probably forget everything I've learned." What I'm saying: 「私は今勉強するのを休まなければ、私が学んだすべてのものを忘れるだろう。」
3
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0answers
212 views

What's the meaning of 「そのさま」? [duplicate]

Recently, I looked up the definition of 「流暢{りゅうちょう}」 in a monolinguistic Japanese dictionary, and the definition is as follows: 言葉が滑らかに出てよどみないこと。また、そのさま。 What is the meaning of そのさま in this ...
4
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1answer
220 views

What do 「やっと」 and 「うせにゃ」 mean?

I am not sure if the 「やっと」 would mean 'at last' or relate to any specific Japanese dialect. Here is sentence including the words in question. だから わしが特{とく}別{べつ}におねがいして やっと おまえたちも入{にゅう}場{じょう}...
5
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1answer
204 views

What is the meaning of the expression “異質の危険”?

I've been reading some documents on documents by various political parties, and have seen the term "異質の危険" used by 日本共産党 a few times now, but cannot work out what it means. Whenever I've seen it, it'...
10
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1answer
295 views

Etymology of 天地無用

WWWJDIC: [天地無用]{てんちむよう} (exp) (yoji) do not turn upside down I see this on some cardboard boxes in the context of shipping and handling. Why is this expression used to indicate "this side up", or ...
4
votes
2answers
483 views

Meaning of 何によらず

I was reading a Japanese sentence of which part read 生真面目な性格で、何によらず人の注目を引くことが苦手だった。 but could not work out the meaning of 何によらず. I thought that perhaps the よらず is the negative of よる but that still ...
5
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1answer
222 views

Indicating a lack of surprise

How do you indicate a lack of surprise at something? For example, in response to someone noting that Cyprus had given 12 points to Greece at the Eurovision Song Contest. I tried using "本当に?" ...
3
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1answer
325 views

The meaning of “ところ” in context

I am having a difficult time understanding the meaning of "ii tokoro" in the context of this sentence. The full sentence(s) in which I am translating is as follows: "おっと、いいところに。 今日 は新しいムービーを撮るみたいなんや。...
1
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1answer
186 views

What is the meaning of 「こわあてかなわんで」?

Before the expression is said by a guy, he previously says the following sentence. I'm not sure if it is related to Kansai dialect. しっかりしてんかいな ほんまに 無{む}計{けい}画{かく}なことされるのいちばんきらいや。 Another question: ...
3
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1answer
180 views

What does 「例によって例のごとくや」 mean?

I have noticed that there is a definition for 「例によって例のごとし」 in a dictionary online but there is slightly difference in the sentence ending, 「くや」 and 「し」. I am not sure if they have the same meaning. ...
4
votes
1answer
318 views

Usage of ひゃっほーい?

I was reading a Japanese blog post and ひゃっほーい was the starter (sort of like the intro). I researched a bit and my current understanding is that ひゃっほーい expresses happiness, like saying "yay" or "wow" ...
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1answer
532 views

Don't understand the situation in a shin chan comic strip

I'm reading Shin Chan and there's a situation I can't quite understand. His mother says they're going to the bank, and Shin Chan starts packing his toy. Then his mother says おもちゃはいいの!!おもちゃは and after ...
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3answers
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Saying “you're welcome” at the workplace

There are a few ways to say "You're welcome". Which is the best for somebody in the workplace (inside and outside the team and of about the same level as myself) どういたしまして いいえ いえいえ others?
3
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1answer
439 views

What does 『なのよさ』 at the end of a sentence mean?

I am currently playing a Visual Novel, and there's a character who ends all of her sentences with that 『なのよさ』(This is 蒔菜{まきな} from the Grisaia VN series). From what I understood that has to do with ...
2
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1answer
81 views

Question conserning using とかしたら

A character from a book (カゲロウデイズ -in a daze-) said this: 「ほら、お揃いのカップでみんなでお茶とかしたら楽しそうじゃない?」 I am confused as to the use of the "とかしたら" after "お茶." She is saying that something seems fun with the ...
6
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4answers
3k views

How to ask whether a dish is pescetarian-friendly?

I'm traveling to a smallish city in Japan a little over a week from now (I'll be there two weeks), and I'm wondering what is the best way to ask a server whether or not a particular dish is ...
3
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1answer
161 views

Meaning of 一丁前にご指摘失礼しました

A young employee points out an error made by the boss in a blog post, the following ensues: boss: なるほど、あとで直しとくわ employee: ありがとうございます。一丁前にご指摘失礼しましたー。 QUESTION: What does 一丁前 refer to in this ...
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2answers
5k views

“Also…” interjection in Japanese; appending an additional request or afterthought

In Japanese, how would one go about appending an additional request or afterthought? For example: 1: お水【みず】をお願【ねが】いします。 "Water please." 2: あっ、(・・・)、氷【こおり】を入【い】れていただけませんか。 "..Ah also, could ...
3
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1answer
292 views

売る exact usage/meaning

I was reading a Japanese text, and came across this piece of dialogue : "なんで他人とケンカするの" "なんでって...売られるからだよ.売れられたケンカは買う.そんだけだ." But I really can't seem to understand what the second person is trying to ...
3
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1answer
371 views

childish manner of speaking

I've heard that this phrase: 王様のベッドで寝ちゃおっと is spoken in a child-like way. The full translation is "let's sleep in the king's bed", and the portion that is child-like would be 寝ちゃおっと (let's sleep). ...
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2answers
2k views

How to ask if others want to do something?

In the Japanese language, if the speaker wants to express the will he himself wants to do, 'たい ' is usually used. For example: I want to buy this book. わたしはこの本を買いたい。 I want to go back home. ...
4
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1answer
1k views

Modal expressions in “He must be Japanese” - に決まっている and ぜひ・きっと・必ず

"He must be Japanese", if translated to idiomatic Japanese according to the standard concept, should be: 彼は日本人に決まっている。 What about the following alternatives? 彼はぜひ日本人です。 彼はきっと日本人です。 ...
3
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1answer
3k views

What are the ways to express someone's condolences?

All is in the title, what are the ways to express someone's condolences when somebody died. I know お気の毒に but is there something else? What can/should you say to friends? To collegues? To bosses? etc.
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2answers
1k views

What does the word 「ありゃしねえ」mean?

It is a situation which a salesperson announces to a group of people to attract them to buy his goods. Here is the full sentence. こんなお買【か】いどくはどこの世【せ】界【かい】へいったって ありゃしねえよ
4
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1answer
127 views

“Even a crab” - Japanese proverbs (?)

Coming across these kind of constructs: カニでもわかる+名詞句 カニでもできる... カニでも使える... etc. What does it mean? How is it used? In general, what main associations would a "crab" create from a Japanese ...
2
votes
1answer
120 views

How is 情けは人の為ならず used?

Is it used in the positive sense "you should do good things for others! good things will happen to you as well" or rather, negative "good things are rooted in selfish motivations", or something else?
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4answers
2k views

How to express “I think I can speak a little Japanese because I have studied a lot” in Japanese?

I'm trying to say "I think I can speak a little Japanese because I have studied a lot". My translation attempt: わたしはちょっと日本語を話せるようになった思うからたくさんべんきょうすることがある Does it sound right?
6
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2answers
471 views

What does 形から入る mean?

What does 形から入る mean? What contexts may it be used in? I can't find the phrase in my dictionary. I ran across this in an anime. Transcription of the relevant parts: [麻]{ま}[音]{おん}の父さん 「本当にこの子は『...
6
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2answers
3k views

最終講義・懇親会の出欠連絡の葉書に、伝統的にどんなコメントを書くべきですか。

去年の3月まで所属していた大学講座から、「最終講義・懇親会」の案内が来ました。 欠席・出席を返答する葉書が入っていました。一番下のところに、「コメント欄」があります。そこに、「特に行けない人は、コメントを書いて欲しい」というようなことが書いてありました。 私が行ける場合は、その欄には何も書かないで送るのが普通ですか。あるいは、伝統的に何か書いた方がいいですか。何か書いたほうがよい場合、...
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1answer
370 views

I was told to do X if Y

I have no idea how to translate this sentence pattern into Japanese. If I try with basic grammar, it sounds very wrong and overly complex. What is the most natural way of expressing this? If there is ...
4
votes
1answer
413 views

“A Hen in the Wind”?

I just watched the 1948 film "A Hen in the Wind," directed and co-written by Yasujiro Ozu. I'm guessing the title is a reference to a Japanese proverb or traditional metaphor. Does anyone recognize it?...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

Meaning of “gkbrです”

I have noticed the usage of gkbrです in sentences not related to the G insect: 田中さんに掘り返されたことでgkbrです。 恐怖でgkbrですが続きテツヤ待機。 Does it mean "I am afraid and want to crawl under the furniture"?
2
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1answer
225 views

What does として mean in 「ペットとしてしいくするのはかんたんです。」?

I'm reading a JLPT N5 graded text (to practice reading with kanjis) and I understand all of it except for the following sentence: ペットとしてしいくするのはかんたんです。 I don't understand the として in that sentence. ...
4
votes
1answer
100 views

Meaning of タッグでやる

According to Wikipedia, a tag team is a two-person team of which only one person plays at a time. Speaking of a long-length work project, 小林 says: 田中とタッグでやる。 Is there any nuance difference with ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the meaning of あいつはあいつで?

I encountered the phrase in this line: あいつはあいつで、きちんとバイトしているらしい。 I think I can intuit the general meaning but I was wondering if anyone had a full explanation.
3
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1answer
487 views

What could the expression “ナンパされた” mean in english?

ナンパ - seducer, ladies' man, playboy された - passive form + past tense of する
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1answer
2k views

How would you say something is like something else?

I know something similar to this has been asked before: Saying something is like/not like something else I'm just wondering if there's a phrase to express 'like-ness' using senses, for example, "this ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the difference between すみません and すみませんでした?

What is the difference between すみません and すみませんでした (or すまない and すまなかった)? If it is what the 「でした」 suggests and すみませんでした is the past form and used to apologize for things done in the past, then what I ...
7
votes
1answer
222 views

Is 忝い(かたじけない) used in contemporary language?

I'm currently watching Rurouni Kenshin, and Kenshin says 忝い(かたじけない) a lot to express his gratitude. I looked it up a little and based on this it seems like it's old Samurai language, but I wonder if ...
8
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1answer
901 views

Meaning of ~と言われればそれまでだが、…

I have found this sentence: 好みの問題と言われればそれまでだが、私はこの店の内装はなんとなく好きになれない。 To my poor understanding it sounds similar to: 好みの問題と言われても、私はこの店の内装はなんとなく好きになれない。 If it is completely different and I ...
5
votes
1answer
411 views

How emotionally loaded is 会いたい【あいたい】?

I'd like to ask how emotionally loaded 会いたい【あいたい】 is. For example, if I were to (neutrally) convey the sense of "I'd like to meet you" by using 会いたい, would it carry an emotional expectation in the ...
1
vote
1answer
316 views

Translation to Japanese: “The test will determine which university I will go to.” [closed]

How do you say "The test will determine which university I will go to." in Japanese? I only can figure out the first part of it, which is 「あのテストは…」 Can anyone here help me complete it?
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vote
2answers
510 views

What does 「かけようかどうしようか」 mean?

The sentence below is taken from a light novel. 声をかけようかどうしようか迷っていたら、ほんの一瞬風が止んだ I don't understand what 「かけようかどうしようか」 means. Is it an expression? This light novel sometimes omits kanji and I'm ...
6
votes
2answers
10k views

What are valid responses to the expressions 「はじめまして」 and 「よろしくおねがいします」 used in introductions?

I came across a learn-Japanese book from the 1980s and wanted to know what you guys think. The book gave a general formula for introduction and here is how it goes: Someone says their name with any ...
2
votes
1answer
415 views

What does 馬鹿も一芸 mean in English? [closed]

I'm wondering how 馬鹿も一芸 should be translated into English. EDICT-based dictionary sites list this phrase with the following translation: 馬鹿も一芸 even a fool has a talent Is this translation ...
5
votes
2answers
395 views

How to use に限って【かぎって】 correctly

I came across the expression に限って but not too sure how to use it. It seems to mean "especially/of all the/only" and has to be used in a negative manner. However, I am confused with the following ...
4
votes
1answer
244 views

How to write the passive form of the potential form?

I am curious about the passive form(受動態) of the potential form(可能形). I thought about using (先生に)褒められられる but it seems awkward, and there are no search results in Google for it. So is (先生に) ...