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比喩. An analogy that describes a subject by asserting that it is, on some point of comparison, the same as another otherwise unrelated object

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Is there a way to express metaphor in japanese?

I'm familiar with にている and みたい however I'm looking for a way to say something is something without literal implications. For example Michael Phelps is a fish. Like he's not literally a fish so i ...
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54 views

Meaning of 場所あけて in the following sentence

In a manga called Samurai Drive, Makio and Ren are best friends. They always fight together and Ren often protects Makio. Now Ren has just died during a battle, so Makio says: なあ恋【れん】 ...
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85 views

Meaning of 小動物系

Context: a man reads some online posts after accusing another man of being a pedofile. What is the meaning of 小動物系? Considering the context and the fact that images of young girls came out when I ...
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211 views

Metaphorical meaning of 骨

Context: in the last round of a match, a boxer realizes his opponent is just repeating the same combination over and over. I think 骨 in the following sentence has a metaphorical meaning, but I don't ...
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129 views

「猫の額」, the purpose of 日本語の分かる猫

As the writer described the meaning of 猫の額ほど and how to use it, the following sentence came after it. 猫にも額の広い猫と狭い猫がいると思うので、日本語の分かる猫に聞かれたら、「失礼じゃないですか?!」と怒られてしまいそうです。 My friend told me that this ...
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1answer
93 views

What do you treat as an animate and inanimate object when counting?

In Japanese animate and inanimate objects are treated differently. For people: the verb exist いる is used the generic counter (一{ひと}つ, 二{ふた}つ, 三{みっ}つ, ...) cannot be used the specific counter (一{ひと}人{...
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91 views

Meaning of 拳の山の骨

In a manga, a spectator is describing the way a boxer throws his punches: 拳の山の骨で斬【き】りにきよる… 物騒なヤツや What is the meaning of 拳の山の骨? Does it refer to the knuckles? Here you can see the page it is taken ...
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1answer
88 views

Meaning of 引き手 in the following sentence

In a manga about boxing, a character is explaining what the famous Muhammad Ali's phantom/anchor punch is. The phantom punch is basically a fast punch landed over the opponent's punch, but I can't ...
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69 views

Is there a metaphorical meaning to this line? (心の望むままに情欲を唄おう)

The line in question: 心の望むままに情欲を唄おう。 Context: The speaker is monologuing about how terrible society is, especially how corrupt those in power are, he starts to sound nihilistic and basically says ...
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1answer
138 views

What does 迷路の奥のダイヤ mean?

Found it in the lyrics of BUMP OF CHICKEN - Answer 想像つかない昨日を越えて その延長の明日を抱えて 小さな肩 震える今 それでも笑った 迷路の奥のダイヤのような 届かなかった風船のような 気づけなかった流星のような 涙をもらった I googled a lot without a clue finally. Is it ...
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167 views

Meaning of スイッチ in the following sentence

Context: in a boxing match, boxer A is fighting against the particularly tough boxer B. Even after having taken a lot of punches, boxer B is still standing. During a break, the trainer of boxer A says:...
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1answer
153 views

meaning of リスクはバネ

Literally it means "the risk is a spring", but that doesn't really make sense. the original context: もしも旅団ではない者にこの能力を使ってしまった場合!!即座にオレ自身が命を失うようプログラムされている!! これは制約と誓約!!覚悟の証!!リスクはバネ!!...
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195 views

”不細工な皮で包み…" is this a metaphor?

So I'm reading part of a book, and one of the characters says this; 「不細工な皮で包みやがって」 When I tried to translate it and understand what it means, it didn't make too much sense to me "Hiding behind ...
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126 views

Meaning of 尖った道

What is the meaning of this expression? I know 尖った is an adjective that means "pointed, sharp", but I don't understand what a "pointed road" could be. I tried to google it but I only got 8 results, ...
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Is there a poetic or metaphorical meaning to ゆびさき が かたくなる?

I'm curious about the final line of the musician Kishi Bashi's song "Atticus, in the Desert": あたま ふらふら ゆびさき が かたくなる I understand the direct translation of this ("head dizzy fingertips get hard") ...
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243 views

Metaphorical equivalent of Timbuktu or Outer Mongolia

Does Japanese have any metaphorical equivalent to Timbuktu or Outer Mongolia (or, in the case of Australia, perhaps Woop Woop), meaning a remote or inaccessible place? Wiktionary recognises the ...
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226 views

Metaphor of collecting dirt [closed]

In episode 24 of the Japanese anime Shin Atashin'chi, around 13:45, a boy on the verge of tears collects a heap of dirt or sand with his hand while holding a sack in the other. This happens in ...
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Meaning of じわれができる

その瞬間、まる子は、地割れができて、AとBとCの三人と、まる子とDとEに分けられてしまったような気がした。 Just then Maruko had a feeling that the group seemd to be divided into the three people A,B,C, and herself and D and E. The only meaning I can ...
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126 views

Are Japanese translations for “Pearl Harbor” ever used metaphorically?

In English, "Pearl Harbor" is sometimes used metaphorically to indicate an unannounced attack, or an event that strongly changes the outlook of a community. Can these metaphorical meanings be used in ...
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Was クリスマスケーキ used metaphorically about women?

There's a belief that "Christmas cake" (presumably クリスマスケーキ) was used metaphorically about Japanese women over 25 - no-one wants Christmas cake after Christmas is over, and similarly men don't want to ...
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1answer
121 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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How does the derogatory term “小便芸者” work?

In Liza Dalby's book "Geisha", while talking about onsen geisha, she mentions various pejorative terms from the general public. She mentions "korobi" (roll-over, presumably 転び) geisha, and "Daruma" (a ...
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515 views

How are programming projects discussed in Japanese?

In English, programming projects (and large systematic projects in general) typically take their descriptive cues from well-known manufacturing/construction industry jargon, i.e. "blueprint", "...
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239 views

Translation of metaphorical meaning of “hieroglyphic”

To literally translate "hieroglyphic", when referring to a largely logographic writing system used by Ancient Egyptians, I think ヒエログリフ or something similar would be used. However, there's another, ...
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716 views

What is the meaning of お気の毒に and how is it used?

Although the there are several definitions in the dictionary: my condolences that's too bad my sympathies What does お気の毒に literally mean? I'm guessing that it might have something to do with "...
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1answer
154 views

Why do people say 未知数 when it is not a number?

Sometimes, people tend to use metaphors from arithmetics to refer to something in ordinary life. For example, to mention some claims or preferences common among people, the expression 最大公約数 'greatest ...
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What is the metaphorical meaning of 手{て}?

I often see 手{て}, hand, used in a metaphorical sense to mean something along the lines of effort or presence... but I'm not totally sure. For example, consider this sentence: 手を[抜]{ぬ}いて仕事{しごと}...
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「安い」って英語からきた表現?

皆さんこんにちは、 日本語で質問を聞かせていただきますので、ご協力ください。 回答やコメントなどは、日本語か英語、どちらの言語でも喜んで読みます。 では。 此間友達と喋っていて好みの話をしていた時一人が「ホラー映画やB級映画が大好き」と言うやいなや「あなた安いな〜」ともう一人が反応しました。 その「安い」は、英語に「cheap」と直訳すれば同じ意味が通じるそうなので、...
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What is a 割り込みタスク?

One of my coworkers todays said something like: "Today I have too many 割り込みタスク so I cannot pay too much attention to this project" Literally translating it into "interrupting tasks" sounds ...
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Why is it お[腹]{なか}が[空]{す}いた but [腹]{はら}[減]{へ}った?

Is there any particular reason why the noun おなか goes with verb すく while the noun はら goes with the verb へる? Would it be weird if I use おなかへった or はらすいた? While on the same topic, does the 'starving' ...