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12

I think that the お and ご prefixes are included when the resulting word has been lexicalized and is no longer simply a combination of the prefix and the bare word. For example, I see entries for おやすみ, おにぎり and ごはん in 大辞林. I think these words were originally combinations of お and ご with 休み, 握り, and 飯(はん), but the combinations became words in their own right, ...


9

おタバコ is heard all the time when restaurant staff asks you if you need a seat where you can smoke. おタバコはお吸いになりますか Do you smoke? おビール, おソース, おタオル I've heard as well, but less often. I would say that 美化語 on 外来語 is not a phenomenon correlated with teenage girls, on the contrary. It strikes me as something that mainly elder women say when trying to sound ...


8

The reason is fairly simple, but probably not going to going to be as pattern based as you would hope. お[水]{みず} is an example of a segment of Japanese known as [美化語]{びかご}, this is more or less means being more polite by using a nicer sounding word. Some example of this are [食]{た}べる instead of [食]{く}う [美味]{おい}しい instead of [旨]{うま}い お[昼]{ひる} instead of [昼]...


7

ご飯{はん} is the 美化語{びかご} version of 飯{めし}, i.e. a beautified version. Usually 美化語 has the form of お/ご+the unbeautified version, but ご飯 is an exception. Another exception is 腹{はら}→おなか, belly. はん and なか do not exist by themselves (with those meanings). Please remember that not all お/ご+noun are 美化語, some are 尊敬語{そんけいご}, respectful language. E.g. お車{くるま}, car. ...


7

お馬鹿さん isn't "idiot"; it is softer, more like "silly". Also note the -san suffix. If a little boy named Daisuke is looking for his cap, while actually wearing it, you could say, 今日、大ちゃんは ちょっと お馬鹿さんになってきた、ね! 灯台もと暗し This is soft compared to something abrupt like おまえが馬鹿だよ! There is a need in language to have a soft way to say "silly". This is not to say that ...


5

I've heard that rice (when cooked and not being used in a curry) has the honorific ご in ごはん because it is an essential item, i.e. something you can't live without. Perhaps the same is true of water. Ice, on the other hand, is not an essential, and presumably wouldn't have had enough time in the language to get any honorific prefix anyway. Edit: I probably ...


5

Just conjecturing but based on: tendency for longer expressions to sound more polite みず is two morae こおり is three morae こおり is "one mora more polite" than みず. お in おみず makes it three and so it compensates for being short and abrupt. Also it could just be a rather simple reason being that in isolation, おみず has a higher occurrence than みず and こおり has a ...


5

Some people use おコーヒー. Both おトイレ and おコーヒー sound like words used in a certain idiolect to me, and their use is not limited to teenage girls, but I do not know exactly what kind of people use these words.


3

The Ministry of Education's guidance is (or used to be) that honorific prefixes should only be used where their usage was well-established by custom, and that as a rule お should be used before Japanese words and ご(御) before "kango" (Chinese or Chinese-style words). Thus, おさけ and おはし(お箸) but ご主人 and ご本人. Honorific prefixes shouldn't be used before 外来語 (non-...


2

Back in the 80's, baka! as an expletive was a vulgar swear word. A Diet member used it on another politico on TV and I still remember the public outrage. Of course, no one said 'it sucks' on American TV either back then. A better definition of baka would be sh*thead not 'fool'. As for the honorific, remember that Omae (you) is both a fighting word level ...


1

No. It really depends upon the word. There are some words which typically don't use the honorific 'o' , but can use it. Others would sound strange or be plain wrong. Good luck.


1

One difference is that gohan is kango (Chinese word), whereas meshi is wago (Japanese word).


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