Questions tagged [time]

時間表現. Grammar or words that express temporal information. Whereas tense is always relative to the moment of utterance, time is more absolutely located on an imaginary timeline.

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23
votes
2answers
11k views

What's the difference between 今日{きょう} and 本日{ほんじつ}?

I also see both in different examples. As in : 今日は暑い。 本日はおめでとうございます。 Both are translated as "Today", but when and how should I use either one? Can we say : 本日はあつい。 And 今日はおめでとうございます。?
21
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1answer
12k views

Can you say "half hour" or must you say "30 minutes"?

I know that to say an hour and a half you can say 一時間半, but is it possible to express simply half an hour even though the counter comes before 半? Or would you just have to say 三十分? If both ways are ...
21
votes
4answers
7k views

When did you last...?

I am searching for a way to ask a question like "When did you last see her?" or "When did you last do the laundry?, or also "When did we last meet?" Basically, how do you construct a question with ...
17
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1answer
1k views

後で vs. 前に. Why not the same particle?

Why don't 後で and 前に both use the same particle? (I suppose I would think に would be more appropriate.) They both seem to be the same kind of statement, just with different times (before/after), so I ...
16
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1answer
1k views

Is 以降 inclusive?

If I say: 16日[以降]{いこう}参加できません。 It means I cannot participate after the 16th. However, what about on the 16th? Is it also implied that I cannot participate on the 16th either? Or, that I can ...
15
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2answers
11k views

Difference between 間 and 間に

I have some problems with understanding what is the difference between these two. According to 初級日本語, 間 refers to certain time frame whereas 間に refers to certain time frame within that time frame. Is ...
14
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8answers
21k views

How do I say "before" or "used to" in Japanese?

朝、作文を書いた時、疑問に思いました。 How can I say something like: I didn't use to like this band. Before, I didn't like this band.
13
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3answers
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No word for "time" until 1871?

In a German newspaper article an interviewed professor says: For a long time the Japanese didn't have any interest in clocks: Until 1871, there hadn't even been a word for time and therefore no ...
13
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2answers
1k views

How to express vague amounts of time?

I'm having trouble figuring out how to express vague amounts of time in Japanese, such as some number of months or some number of hours. I want to use this in a context where the specific number is ...
13
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1answer
2k views

Why is it that some temporal nouns cannot be marked with に? And why do they become more acceptable with には?

Consider the following: に here is used in its function of denoting the time where an event occurs (に1): ◯ 一時に1 ◯ 一時半に1 ◯ 月曜日に1 ◯ 正月に1 * 昨日に1 ?/◯ 昨日には * 今日に1 ?/◯ 今日には * 明日に1 ?/◯ 明日には * 去年に1 ?/◯ 去年には *...
13
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1answer
210 views

How do you express time duration when mixing time units?

When you want to express a passage of time mixing time units like days, hours, and minutes is it best to use for example 間 once at the end to show duration, or should words showing duration be used ...
12
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2answers
3k views

Casual way to say: ''See you tomorrow at (some time)''

Lets say 11am How would you say: ''See you tomorrow at 11.'' ? All I have is : ashita wa juuichi ji ni ... what now ? ... I found this expression online : 11 のあなたは見てください
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4answers
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How can I say "Right now", or "At that exact moment"?

Saying "now" is easy, with 今, but in my experience that doesn't express so much "right now, this instant" as it does "currently". I am looking for structure that translates these examples well: I ...
11
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2answers
2k views

Use of になります in the context of time

While attempting to translate the sentence "It will soon be two years since I started learning Japanese", I started wondering how になります works in the context of time. Ignoring any other translation ...
10
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1answer
729 views

Use of suffix 後 in place of a verb

姉は大学を卒業後、家族から独立している。 (source) My sister has been independent of the family since she graduated from university. (the comma is my own, to break up that horrible string of kanji) This sentence seems a ...
10
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1answer
3k views

How to read 24-hour clock format

There are a lot of topics on forums in what case Japanese people use 24-hour clock format. But I have never seen how it should be pronounced. It's not hard to say something like 8:05. This is common ...
10
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2answers
527 views

Nuance between いっとき and いちじ as a pronunciation of 一時

I am writing a flashcards deck to memorize Minato-ku's list of 防災-related words. Excerpt: 一時集合場所 いっときしゅうごうばしょ Temporary meeting places 一時滞在施設 いちじたいざいしせつ   Temporary stay facilities As you see, ...
9
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3answers
3k views

最中に and うちに differences

So this sentence appeared in my grammar book: パーティーの__地震が起こり、会場は大騒ぎになった。 It says the correct thing to write in the blank space is 最中に. Which would roughly translate the sentence to "Just as the ...
9
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2answers
5k views

How to say "quarter to" or "quarter past" some hour?

For example, how do you say: It's quarter to 3. and It's quarter past 3.
9
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2answers
294 views

Why can we not use に to mark absolute time with i-adjectives?

EDIT: Still looking for a complete answer. Please read the edit below. This is something I've been wondering for some time now. And this is also not related to relative temporal nouns, I understand ...
9
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1answer
571 views

Amount of time and 間

When expressing "It takes about 1 hour and 15 minutes", would it be best to say 1時間15分掛かる。 or 1時15分掛かる。 or maybe 1時15分間掛かる。 ?
9
votes
1answer
631 views

ここんとこ (ここん所) and other "every now and then" adverbs

I have been in the market for some good synonyms for ときどき, and I encountered one today that I wanted to share, and also ask for some opinions, since I can not find a correct definition online. The ...
8
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2answers
4k views

Saying you'll do/have done something for a certain amount of time?

I wasn't sure how to properly word the question, but I'm asking how to make sentences such as: "I have lived in America for 10 years." "I will go to Japan for a month." "I have had this job for a ...
8
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1answer
1k views

Exceptions in pronouncing the counter for minutes (分)

I'm learning the counter for minutes, which is 分. I know, there are several exceptions in when it comes to pronunciation. 1 min = いっぷん 2 min = にふん 3 min = さんぷん 4 min = よんぷん 5 min = ごふん 6 min = ろっぷん 7 ...
8
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1answer
319 views

Can ぐらい be used to replace ごろ?

A question from my N5 mock test book reads: A 「何{なん}時{じ}に うちへ 帰{かえ}りますか。」 B 「7時{じ} (    ) 帰{かえ}ります。」 1 ごろ  2 じゅう  3 まで  4 ぐらい The answer was 1, but I've been taught that both ごろ and ぐらい are ...
8
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2answers
2k views

What is the difference between と, たら and 時【とき】?

First, I came across this sentence using と in a way I've never encountered before. ピノキオはうそを吐くと、鼻が長くなります。 My translation: When/As Pinocchio tells lies his nose becomes longer. After a little ...
8
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2answers
340 views

(When) can you use dictionary form with 間? / 辞書形と「間」は(どんな時に)一緒に使えますか?

I've just learned 間・間に, as in: 私はビーンにいる間、写真をたくさん取りたいですよ。 ジョンは出かけている間、ビールを飲みました。 All the examples on my grammar sheet use present-continuous form (~ている) or いる. (These are my own examples, though.) So ...
7
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1answer
610 views

When would you use 30分{ぷん} versus 半{はん} for telling time?

I know telling time in English, you can say "It is 3:30" or "It is half past 3" and they can be used interchangeably. When telling the time in Japanese, is this still the case? Can ...
7
votes
1answer
385 views

Counting Duration of Months

When counting duration in months, is it ~ヶ月間or just ~ヶ月? Example: 私はもう六ヶ月ぐらい日本語を勉強しています。 ジルと暮らした四ヶ月間 ( btw I don't know what the second example means I just took it from my textbook so I would ...
7
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2answers
489 views

What's the difference between じき and すぐ?

すぐ, and especially 今すぐ, is my habitual way to express "soon", or "right after this". I know that じき means more or less the same thing, and when I hear it or see it written, I get the general meaning ...
7
votes
1answer
216 views

Future dates in the Japanese calendar

I was looking at the heisei wiki page and I wondered how you would refer to future dates in the japanese calendar? For example would 'The 2020 olympics' be '[平成]{へいせい}32[年]{ねん}のオリンピック'? Is there some ...
6
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1answer
44k views

How to say after (verb) (ex. after eating, after running) in Japanese?

How do you say after (insert verb here) in Japanese? like after studying, after drinking? would after studying be benkyotte kara? (べんきょうってから)
6
votes
1answer
163 views

What kind of periods can I put before にわたって?

I came across this question when doing some JLPT N2 practice. ( )にわたってこの町には観光客が大勢きた。 a 五月 b 五月の連休 c 一週間 I think that all three options are correct syntactically. All three are ...
6
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2answers
4k views

How to translate "once" and "every" in Japanese? 一度 or いつも

[一度]{いちど(ひとたび)} means once, but [一遍]{いっぺん} also mean once in sentences like once I did something or once I am a something. 常に means always in sentences like I always am a something or I always do ...
6
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2answers
423 views

Noun+Adjective - What are the rules/usages?

I usually self-study, however I see a tutor once a week who is a native from Tokyo. In my previous lesson with her, she used the following: もう夜遅いから家に帰ったほうがいいでしょう。 Where 夜遅い translates to "late at ...
6
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1answer
5k views

Which time expressions take the に particle?

The textbook Japanese for busy people 1 tells me, in lesson 6, that "relative time expressions like あした, らいしゅう, こんげつ and きょねん generally do not take any particles." They exemplify this with sentences ...
6
votes
1answer
140 views

How to determine if 先 refers to future or past events?

I had previously asked something similar in the past, and was convinced for a while that the the question was caused by a misquote. While that could still be part of it, I think I'm now able to ...
6
votes
1answer
406 views

Can I say 行ってきます if I don't plan to come back?

When can I safely say 「行ってきます」when leaving home or another place? How loosely can this phrase be used? Can you use it even if you don't plan to come back until a day/week/month later? If it is going ...
5
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3answers
2k views

How to say "rough year" or "rough time"?

I want to say "it was a rough year", but I'm not sure how to put it. I thought of "難しい年頃" which I understand means "difficult age", normally used to describe the rebel age of kids. How do people ...
5
votes
1answer
182 views

Which form should be used: ろくしゅうかん or ろくしゅう?

The full sentence, which I had to learn was: わたしは ろくしゅうかんまえに にほんに きました But I don't understand the meaning of the "-kan" that follows ろくしゅう Can anyone please enlighten me when and why I have to ...
5
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2answers
3k views

How would you say 'the past ____'? (i.e. the past 'hour', the past 'day)

I've been wondering how to say 'I spent the past [time frame] [insert action]'. For example, "I spent the past hour studying Japanese". Would it be translated to something like... ...
5
votes
1answer
176 views

Using particles with a time as a topic

If I wanted to say "I ate something this morning" or "Did you eat something this morning", would I use a particle with "this morning"? Example: けさ、なにかたべましたか? vs けさはなにかたべましたか?
5
votes
1answer
230 views

For time adverbs, are particles instead of commas used in official (legal) writing?

Even though yesterday is not an adverb, we say: I played golf yesterday. only because the preposition, on, is dropped before yesterday. In that on yesterday becomes a prepositional phrase that ...
5
votes
2answers
136 views

今(temporal counter) vs. 本(temporal counter)

Aside from levels of formality, is there a difference in the meaning/nuance of 今日・今週・今月・今年 as opposed to 本日・本週・本月・本年 ?
5
votes
1answer
405 views

What is the recommended timing for あけおめ ことよろ?

Contrarily to the abbreviated informal (if not rude) version I used in the title, the usual greeting for the New Year is quite long: 明けましておめでとうございます。今年もよろしくお願いします。 Those are two sentences, and it ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Difference between ほとんど~ない, めったに~ない and まれ

is there a difference in nuance or formality between ほとんど~ない, めったに~ない and まれ?
5
votes
1answer
1k views

The use of present and past tenses in ~時 sentences

In Genki II textbook (second edition page 114 and 115) you are tasked with creating sentences using ~時. The problem is their answers seem to contradict what is written in "A dictionary of basic ...
5
votes
2answers
245 views

When does 明日辺り start and finish?

Is 明日辺り exactly the same as 明日? If not, let's say I just got told "Please do <something> 明日辺り", then: From what time today does it start to become acceptable to do it? Approximately when will ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

How to express duration of an activity?

For example I want to say "I ran 5km in 23mins 59 secs" or "It took me 23mins 59 secs to run 5k" or "It took me an hour to tidy my room" etc etc etc.
5
votes
1answer
141 views

Different ways to read out the year

In English, there are a few ways we could read out a year like 2012 - e.g. "two thousand and twelve", "twenty twelve". Does the same thing exist in Japanese, or is there only one ...