Questions tagged [honorifics]

Affixes, particles and conjugations applied to words to mark respect.

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7
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1answer
607 views

おる in honorific contexts

Usually, we're told that おる is a humble verb, and that mostly holds true. But sometimes I see it conjugated to a light honorific form おられる, usually when talking about someone to whom respect must be ...
12
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1answer
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Do all verbs have an honorific and humble form?

I was reading about this phenomenon in a few places and saw, for instance, this table of transformations and substitutions for various verbs. Is it only these common verbs which change, or do all ...
7
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4answers
670 views

does anyone know of any o-words or go-words which are absolutely neutral?

Does anyone know of any o-words or go-words which are absolutely neutral (have no nuances of being polite / courteous / respectful / womanly / cute etc etc)? The only ones I'm aware of currently is ...
12
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1answer
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What does 氏 mean after a name, how is it different from さん or 様?

If you look in the dictionary for the definition of 氏 you'll find it defined as: family name; lineage; birth. However I have seen it used in such a way that it is doubtful that it means any of those ...
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Honorific prefixes: 「ご」 vs 「お」

Some nouns take the 「ご」 prefix: ご両親 {りょうしん} ご家族 {かぞく} ご無事 {ぶじ} ご安心 {あんしん} ご丁寧 {ていねい} While many others take the 「お」 prefix: お母さん お仕事 {しごと} お月 {つき}さま お家 {うち} お客 {きゃく} In general,...
4
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1answer
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a few words have an honorific 「お」or「ご」 as a necessary prefix, right?

I just came a across the word 「お巡りさん」。While 「お巡り」 is a word, 「巡り」 is not. Likewise, 「ご飯」 is a word, but while 「飯」is a word, the reading changes to the 訓読み (めし)。This means that the 「ご」in「ご飯」is not ...
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Prefix お for names - how is it used?

I recently watched a Japanese drama titled 「おせん」. The title comes from the first name of the main character - the character's name is 半田{はんだ}仙{せん} who is a young お上{かみ} of a traditional restaurant. ...
2
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1answer
423 views

~うございます construction

I already know that it's hardly used anymore, but for sentences such as 嬉しゅうございます, is this humble? That is to say, is it inappropriate to use the form for someone of higher social standing (provided ...
11
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1answer
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How to invoke God/spirits in Japanese

No, this is not about any Buddhist chant or mantra that can be used to call forth Japanese gods or heavenly spirits, but rather about any specialized words or interjections that attract attention of ...
12
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1answer
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Usage of お+[verb stem]+する for humble form and お+[verb stem]+になる for honorific form

Apart from using verb-specific humble and honorific versions (e.g. 参る < 行く < いらっしゃる), the general method of turning a verb into humble is by using お+[verb stem aka 連用形]+する while the general ...
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2answers
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With whom to use different honorific forms? 丁寧語より尊敬語・謙譲語・丁重語

With whom is it considered proper to use 尊敬語・謙譲語・丁重語 instead of 丁寧語? I mean saying おいでになります・伺います・参ります instead of 行きます. The often given example is for a service-person speaking with a customer, but ...
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2answers
503 views

using 美化語 in 謙譲語 verb forms does not make sense, right?

So, 美化語 is used to create honorifics: お名前 ご注文 etc. But, the standard way to create the 謙譲語 form of verbs is: お+[verb stem] + いたします That does not make logical sense to modify the action that you are ...
4
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1answer
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can 美化語{びかご} create implied subjects?

As mentioned in the Addressing strangers without knowing the name thread, 敬語{けいご} often communicates the implied actors in a sentence. The thread titled using 美化語 in 謙譲語 verb forms does not make sense,...
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2answers
279 views

Can the honorific お be used with a person's name?

I have seen the honorific used in front of nouns and was wondering if it can be used in front of a person's name. Thank you.
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What is the correct usage of 承知しました, 了解です and かしこまりました, the more formal forms of 分かる?

At work, it is wrong to simply say 分かる to say that you understand something. In what situation should I opt to use one of the previously mentioned forms?
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1answer
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Verbs which are more frequently used to built the honorific passive forms

I'd like to ask you a question about this honorific form. I will give an example as detailed as possible to make this question clear. The verb yomu is often used in passive form to show respect: ...
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7answers
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When should one add さん at the end of a name?

I've heard some names pronounced with 〜さん added to them (such as 佐々木さん) and some without it. I believe it is related to respect or the age of the person named. What would be the guidelines or general ...
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Why is the honorific o used for the bathroom?

I've seen the honorific "o"/"go" (is it called bikago?) being used as politness or reverence: o-cha for non-western tea, o-namae when talking about someone else's name, o-genki instead of just genki, ...
9
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1answer
384 views

Looking Up Whether 御 Is Read お or ご

Is there a good way to look up whether a 御 prefix is お or ご for a word? I know there is the Chinese origin versus Japanese origin thing (mentioned here). But is there a way to look up for a certain ...
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4answers
760 views

Is the use of 先生 and similar titles context sensitive?

While it is generally safe to use -さん when taking to someone and the use of -先生 is appropriate for use in a school environment when talking to a teacher, would the use of -先生 carry over outside of the ...
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1answer
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Is -さん used when referring to a celebrity or historical figures?

When referring to a celebrity or historical figure, do you use -さん? I am listening to Yoko Shimomura. Would it be:"下村陽子さんを聞いている。"? Abraham Lincoln is my favorite president. Would it be: "...
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3answers
942 views

Is "して" dropped in this phrase "ご利用{りよう}ください"?

I happened across this in a document: これより前の記事は、サイト内検索をご利用ください。 Why can you say "ご利用ください"? 体言止めい? But, I used to hear ご利用ください used frequently in the subways... "お仕事ください" // (As noted in the ...
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1answer
347 views

What is this archaic female honorific form called, and what relationship does it describe?

I stumbled upon this way of referring to women that was apparently used in pre-war Japan。I can't remember where I found it, or what was said about it's name or purpose, just that it went something ...
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1answer
925 views

What is お in お元気ですか?

Sorry if this is a very basic question, but I'm trying to understand everything in my first lesson (online, Rocket Japanese). I don't understand what the purpose of お is in the phrase お元気ですか, which ...
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1answer
204 views

神 compared to 神様

When the Abrahamic God is referred to in Japanese, 神様 is very common, but on occasion I simply see 神 on its own. This even applies when they are clearly speaking reverentially, using words such as 御心{...
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3answers
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When shouldn't I use 「〜さん」when referring to a third person?

In In actual Japanese society, how often are second-person pronouns used?, the accepted answer says: You can either refer to a person by the name like 山田, which is not (particularly) polite, or ...
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431 views

General applicability of the ~ませ conjugation

I have only found the ~ませ conjugation used in the following honorific verbs: いらっしゃいませ くださいませ なさいませ Can the conjugation be applied to other honorific verbs, like おっしゃいませ or めしあがりませ? Or even common ...
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Using Japanese honorifics with non-kana names

Some Japanese websites have no problem addressing me as Amandaさん, but how common is this in human-produced Japanese? Under what circumstances would someone refer to someone else as Amandaさん, בועזくん, ...
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3answers
423 views

Is it appropriate to use [先生]{せんせい} when addressing a ski instructor?

Is it appropriate to use [先生]{せんせい}, either by itself or as an honorific after their name, when addressing a ski instructor? I'm not sure whether it'd be appropriate because: Using 先生 in this ...
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3answers
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芸能人・スポーツ選手・公人に「さん」などの敬称を付けなくてもよい理由は?

Reasons for omitting titles like 'さん' after names of entertainers, performers and public figures 「記者ハンドブック 新聞用字用語集」によると、 運動、芸能欄などのスポーツ選手、芸能人には敬称をつけない [出典] そうです。新聞以外のメディアや、...
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4answers
434 views

When is a person referred to with 様 in the mass media and what does it signify?

In media like TV and newspapers, it appears certain classes of people can be referred to with the honorific "様": The Imperial family: 皇太子殿下と美智子さま The Crown Prince and Michiko-sama ...
11
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3answers
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Are honorifics used for dead people?

Are honorifics used for dead people? For example, would チンギス・カン have something after the name (presumably not just a mere さん!) when you're not referring to the dish?
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1answer
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Is the honorific postfix -氏{し} usually used towards men?

Is using the honorific postfix -氏{し} usaged biased towards men or is it equally appropriate to be used for women as well? Building from this excellent answer about honorifics: What does 氏 mean after ...
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2answers
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「様」vs「殿」, which is more respectful?

Ammy claims that 殿 is more respectful than 様: 様 -sama: a respectful honorific used for those of a higher social standing 殿 -dono: even more respectful than -sama, less likely to be ...
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2answers
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How rude is it to speak to a Japanese stranger informally instead of using the polite form?

Are there any native Japanese here that could tell me how rude it is to speak informally to Japanese people I have never met instead of using the polite form? I'm assuming it's more rude the older the ...
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2answers
805 views

Can the honorific o be used in front of all nouns?

Can the honorific o be used in front of all nouns? I was thinking of sentence structures and wondering if o could be placed in front of all nouns. Thank you.
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4answers
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Can a sonkeigo verb be used with an inanimate subject? / 尊敬語は無生物主語に対して使えますか?

As a background, consider this question: “is this sentence correct 会議は三時からでいらっしゃいます.?” My initial thought was like this: A sonkeigo (尊敬語) verb is used to show the speaker’s respect toward the ...
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2answers
185 views

When to use -さん after an occupation?

When do you use さん after a occupation? For example, would you say "札幌に行って、プログラマーにあいます" or "札幌に行って、プログラマーさんにあいます" to say "I am going to Sapporo, and meeting some programmers?" Is it used to indicate ...
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"くださいませんか" vs. "いただけませんか"

When I want to make 「それを見せて下さい。」 more formal, I always say 「それを見せて頂けませんか?」. But, I want to double-check this.    I never say 「それを見せて下さいませんか。」. While that seems perfectly fine, I don't think I've ...
5
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1answer
311 views

What criteria decides whether to print 「氏」 or 「さん」 at the end of a person's name in newspapers?

I just realized that newspapers sometimes end a person's name with 「さん」: 後藤さん不明、昨年11月に把握 首相、答弁で明かす:。And then sometimes end a person's name with 「氏」: 自民・山本一太氏、人質事件で与野党結束訴え:。 In this forum, I found this ...
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1answer
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Honorific form of i-adjectives (e.g. はやい → おはよう) [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: ~うございます - keigo い-adjectives I still remember the introductory lecture of the first Japanese course I took in college, my sensei told the class that おはようございます does not mean "...
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1answer
313 views

Which nouns can use 美化語{びかご}?

Whether a noun is [サ変名詞]{さへんめいし}, or not, is an attribute that is specified in the dictionary definition of nouns. "Possible to use 美化語{びかご}" surely should be an attribute of a noun? But, I ...
2
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2answers
501 views

The correct usage of 召し上がる and お召し上がる

A Japanese friend of mine explained to me that many people often incorrectly use the honorific お in the example sentence. The correct sentence is without the お. I have two questions regarding this ...
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2answers
242 views

is this sentence correct 会議は三時からでいらっしゃいます.?

会議は三時からでいらっしゃいます. (I'm studying the honorific and humble forms) Thank you
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1answer
318 views

Question about mixed kana in おススメ

I read this line in a blog today: 料理に使えるおススメ品や、ご飯屋さんを紹介しています。 and I have two questions: 1) I know that the writer can use katakana for emphasis or for some other reason, but why is it mixed ...
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4answers
698 views

Is 最愛の神さん the proper way to write "Dear God?"

Say, you're writing a love letter to God. Is this the right thing to write on the envelope? 最愛の神さん (I'm writing a short story featuring that theme.) EDIT: Maybe this 親愛なる神へ is better grammar?