Questions tagged [idioms]

慣用句・ことわざ. Phrases with fixed words used as a single unit, typically with a meaning beyond what is obvious from its constituent parts.

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1answer
121 views

How may I express concern without asking if the person is 'OK' but wanting them to be 'OK'?

How may I express concern without asking if the person is 'OK' but wanting them to be 'OK'? It's not obvious how to do so in English. In English you might say something like "get well soon", but that'...
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166 views

Understanding 絵に描いたように

そんな絵に描いたように満ち足りたダーズリー家にも、たった一つ秘密があった。 In the Dursley family, who were the very picture of contentment, there was just one secret. My translation of そんな絵に描いたように満ち足りた is purely a guess based on Jisho'...
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119 views

meaning of 身を切る

This is a passage from Re:ゼロから始める異世界生活 2 light novel. Subaru has finished telling Ram the Japanese story The Ogre who cried. story summary by Crunchyroll (link contains spoilers for the anime ...
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2answers
542 views

Is there an idiom for something that will never happen? [duplicate]

Inspired by this question on English SE, and the List of idioms of improbability in Wikipedia which does not have an entry for Japanese, I was wondering... Is there an idiom in Japanese for something ...
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121 views

Searching for idiom frequency list

I am looking for a list of the most common idioms in Japanese, and ideally I want the list to be frequency-based. In other words, it should be based on a large corpus.
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188 views

How to express “They only think about themselves”

I am trying to come up with this sentence, but I feel like some parts of it are too literal and idiomatic, and some words I used here are new to me, so maybe I made some poor decisions when picking ...
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280 views

Difference between 七転び八起き and 七転八起

I really need someones help and PRONTO!! So I have finally decided my next Japanese Kanji tattoo! :) BUT I got one problem when I was doing some research on "Fall down seven times, stand up eight." I ...
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1answer
199 views

Jibun dake baka o miru meaning?

I saw it on a prep book and there says the meaning is to waste time and money, but I don't understand how.
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1answer
224 views

“Neee” instead of one's name or before his name — what does this mean?

When someone - my friend - says "neeee" to me, what does it mean? It's not when I say something and they respond "neeee" or "sou da yo neee". It's when "neee" is used either by itself, or instead of ...
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714 views

How to ask someone in a phone call to pass the phone to someone else?

Example in English: You are on the phone with John, and you know that Mary is in a room with him, you may say "Can you put on Mary, please?". Is there an idiom for this request in Japanese?
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107 views

Can the phrase 不条理劇 “a theatre of absurd” be used figuratively in Japanese?

Would it be valid in casual Japanese conversation to use the term 不条理劇{ふじょうりげき} or 不条理演劇{ふじょうりえんげき} to describe a situation in which for example two parties A and B are talking to each other using ...
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347 views

心は出血している - what exactly the Japanese idiom for it?

is there the same expression in Japanese for good russian idiom 'Сердце кровью обливается'? 「心は出血している」? 'My heart is bleeding' is not very accurate, not really verbatim. This idiom in Russian ...
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1answer
784 views

At what level should we be able to understand Yojijukugo?

In my experience, Chinese language learners are introduced to these 4-character phrases at an early stage (around Chinese 3 in my high school); what I want to know is there a certain aptitude level ...
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196 views

Is there a Japanese word for the game “horseshoes?”

I'm guessing this will come across as two questions, but their interrelation is important... Is there a specific word for the game where you toss a horseshoe at a peg (in English just called ...
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874 views

Meaning of: いらっしゃいます。

I know what はじめまして means. It means, pleased / nice to meet you. When reading Manga at school to learn these expressions, I see the phrase quite often. But there was one Manga where I saw the phrase, ...
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1answer
113 views

What does ああまでされて mean in this sentence?

Thanks in advance for your help. I'm reading a manga (full of slang, which makes it so hard!) and I ran across this sentence: (panel 1) 俺だったら素直に喜べたか!? ああまでされて (panel 2) 追い詰められて!? To get you the ...
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1answer
125 views

Translation Help? 「産声を上げた」

I'm trying to translate a song as practice and I absolutely cannot figure out what this one line means: 「蝕んだ身体に愛を入れて欲しいと 慣れない産声を上げた」 (It's a bit graphic, and I apologize!) Anyway, I get the ...
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116 views

鋭い牙が meaning in human nature

落ち着いて見えても、鋭い牙が内包されていることに変わりはない。 It was a sentence in a light novel (ようこそ実力至上主義の教室へ) that I've been reading, and I have an impression that it should be some kind of idiomatic words. 鋭い (from Jisho....
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418 views

Not seeing is a flower?

Can anyone explain what does this idiom means ? I read the English translation and googled it but I still don’t know what it really means and what does flower refer to . 見ぬが花 “Not seeing is a ...
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1answer
123 views

Meaning of ツッコミどころ多すぎ?

I've come across the phrase: ツッコミどころ多すぎ In a book where the character was for a second time expressing annoyance at his colleague's reckless actions. But I'm unsure of it's meaning since it ...
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259 views

What's 'to take one's proper station' in japanese?

It was quoted in The Chrysanthemum and the Sword and appears to be a japanese idiom.
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1answer
142 views

Is 二人の顔はそっくりだ a possible way to say “Both of their faces look the same”?

This is my attempt at translating the sentence "Both of their faces look the same": 二人の顔はそっくりだ Does it make sense or is it completely wrong?
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87 views

Meaning of きく耳をもたない

The children are painting. Sekiguchi has just criticised Yamada's picture and run away with it: 関口はあざけるように山田の絵をひらひらさせてきく耳をもたない Sekiguchi made Yamada's picture flap like he was making fun of him ...
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134 views

Is 長生きはするもんな a set phrase?

Is 長生きはするもんだな a set phrase meaning "you live and learn"?
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705 views

Meaning of “頭に付く”?

I'm reading through a book about learning Mandarin written in Japanese. There's a section describing the basics of initials (声母【せいぼ】) and finals (韻母【いんぼ】) in Chinese syllables with the following ...
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322 views

Can [面倒]{めんどう} be used as “boring”?

I've just heard many times [面倒]{めんどう} in anime, in translation is not troublesome but boring. Is it usual? Which is more appropriate? Example: 面倒な仕事です。
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153 views

Opposite of 歯止め?

According to WWWJDIC, 歯止め is used as follows: 歯止めをかける; 歯止めを掛ける (exp,v1) to curb; to halt; to apply brakes; to put an end to The English translations have a pretty good correspondence with the ...
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1answer
134 views

蜘蛛の子を散らす-help with this idiom

While I was reading a text, I came across this idiom 「蜘蛛の子を散らす」but this is how it shows up in online dictionaries. I understood what it means and in what context can be used but it would seem that ...
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120 views

Why is “to attempt” written as 心 + 見る? [duplicate]

Why is こころ + みる the word used to say "to try/attempt"? What is it supposed to be saying as an idiom?
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380 views

Translation of a passage discussing zodiac systems

My friend and I are reading 宝石泥棒 by Masaki Yamada. In the beginning of chapter five, there are a few paragraphs that discuss constellations and zodiac systems, but we can't figure out how to translate ...
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160 views

What is the closest equivalent expression to “don't get your panties in a bunch”?

"To get one's panties in a bunch", from Wikitionary: To become overwrought or unnecessarily upset over a trivial matter. [Usually used towards women.] What is the closest Japanese equivalent ...
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147 views

~とく・ておく to emphasize a negative thing?

I know ておく・とく as meaning "in preparation for something". But today I came across the following two sentences: あれだけみっともない辞め方をしといて、まだ政府にモノが言えるのは、民主党はいまだ鳩山の懐をあてにして金を貰っているのでしょうか。 (from Oshiete Goo) ...
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360 views

Meaning of more Kishi Bashi lyrics: けや けや それや どうせね

Kishi Bashi: "Bright Whites" Transliterating from the ローマ字 lyrics, (so I don't know which kanji is meant): けや けや それや どうせね けや けや それや どうせ だめだ やめられない やめられない どうせ だめだけど やめられない ね and then a ...
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A good translation for 寒がるふり / 冷めたふり / etc?

Every once in a while, I come across some variant of a phrase that would literally translate to "pretending to be cold." As far as I can tell, it refers to a sort of desperate attention-seeking ...
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179 views

How would I say “This place is Heaven on Earth”?

How would I say "This place is Heaven on Earth"? Would このところは地球上の天国です。 be correct?

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