27

What Lyle said is true―you'll want to practice a lot. It's much easier to recognize words and phrases you're used to hearing, not just used to reading. That means ear training, and there's no way around it! Still, we can look at some facts about Japanese pronunciation. I'm a non-native speaker, and one of the trickiest things for a non-native speaker to ...


21

You may be familiar with the concept of sentence-level pitch changes in English; for example when you are asking a question, you end the sentence with a rising pitch to indicate that it is indeed a question. Japanese also has sentence-level pitch changes, but more relevantly to this question, it has word-level pitch changes. Downstep Notation In the ...


17

It might have been おっす instead. According to gogen, it's おはようございます that has undergone shortening to form おっす.


16

This doesn't only happen with じゃない > じゃねえ, but generally /ai/ > /ee/, like きたない > きたねえ やばい > やべえ (食{た}べたい = ) 食{く}いたい > 食いてえ As in the other answer, this is extremely informal and in the wrong context can easily be considered plain rude. Xと違う = to differ from X 完成前 = before completion Edit. For completeness, there's also /ae/ > /ee/ e.g. お前 > おめえ /...


14

In my experience, the nature of the relationship and the nature of the communication are both important for knowing when/how to use the plain form and to knowing what the use of plain form signals. In written workplace communication, I never see plain form (I work at a university). In written personal communications (things like Facebook or IM), I rarely ...


13

No, it's not really used in everyday speech. "Everyday writing" is a little ambiguous because it's mostly the form of the writing that determines the tone. To address your edit, it would be weird to use まい in a message to your friend, but I wouldn't be surprised to see it in work correspondence if only because that tends to be more formal in general. The ...


13

It's fairly common for both ai and ae to be slurred to ee in colloquial speech. For example: じゃない → じゃねぇ   janai → janee のみたい → のみてぇ   nomitai → nomitee おまえ  → おめぇ    omae → omee てまえ  → てめぇ    temae → temee Your example has an additional contraction. When a vowel is dropped between r and n, you end up with rn. This isn't pronounceable, so it ...


12

Actually, you've already got the right answer! The verb in question is する, and one of its negative stems (未然形) is せ〜, as in せず, せぬ, and as you've just discovered, せん. The other negative stem of する is the well-known し〜. Note that these are not interchangeable: **せない is ungrammatical, as is **しず. The only verbs that have this extra negative stem are する and ...


10

You are parsing the sentence incorrectly. It should be 長年やってるけど かかった ためし (は) ない なぁ It then roughly means, I have been doing this for quite some years, but it's not like I have ever caught anything. ためし (written 試し) can mean "trial/test", but here it is used in the sense of "experience" (written 例 or 様; see Tsuyoshi Ito's comment below and the entry ...


10

Because Chinese doesn't have voiced consonants. In Chinese, voiced /b/d/g/ are just variants of their voiceless counterparts. So you can't hear the difference between voiced sounds and voiceless sounds. It's hard to explain and learn by text. Instead, I recommend you practice it by listening and imitating. The site 首都大学東京 mic-J 日本語教育 AV リソース may be helpful....


10

It's uttered as a colloquial, casual and exclamatory phrase. It's typically used in response to a situation/stimulation that strikes you suddenly. っ is often added after the stem. 高っ! (Wow,) it's expensive! やば(っ)! (Wow,) this is bad! 痛っ! Ouch! きもちわる(っ)! Gross! In formal settings, you should generally avoid this, but no one would blame you for ...


9

The phrase 「鬼【おに】は外【そと】、福【ふく】は内【うち】」 is said during the 豆まき mamemaki performed as part of 節分 Setsubun. It is often recited rhythmically [●]{オ}[●]{ニ}[●]{ワ}[●]{ー}[●]{ソ}[●]{ト}○○[●]{フ}[●]{ク}[●]{ワ}[●]{ー}[●]{ウ}[●]{チ}○○ Just writing 「鬼は外、福は内」 just looks/reads very ordinary, so here the small ぁ is added to convey the (rhythmical) sound of the children singing/...


8

Other samples from this character in your manga would be helpful to confirm this, but my guess is that せん is equivalent to しない (and possibly derived from せぬ, see Zhen Lin's comment below). Then, 苦労せん means something like "don't worry" or "don't fret". This is really part of the group of dialects from 'Western Japan'. In particular, [九州弁]{きゅうしゅうべん} uses せんで ...


8

Another possibility is that the /g/ is being lenited into a voiced velar fricative /ɣ/, as is common between vowels in Japanese. (See "Handbook of the International Phonetic Association: Japanese" by Hideo Okada, or Wikipedia.) Further, since the second /g/ has rounded vowels (/o/) on both sides, it is likely to be somewhat rounded (/ɣʷ/ = /w̝/). The ...


8

I think you should follow your teacher's advice and avoid second person pronouns. I speak Japanese daily, but never use them. But since they do exist, I don't think "just don't use them" suffices, so I'll try to give a list of situations when I hear them. But even in these cases, they're used much less than in English. Usually sentences are created in a ...


8

けど is the short form of けれども, which could be written け(れ)ど(も), because all of けれども, けれど, けども, けど are used. けども is what, in my experience, is often used in a half formal, half informal setting. It is more refined than けど, but not quite as stiff as けれども.


8

We call our pets by their (nick)names most of the time. [ The pet's name (+ chan to show extra affection)]、 こっちおいで。([...], kocchi oide.) You can replace the name with generic terms like 猫ちゃん(neko-chan; kitty) and ワンちゃん(wan-chan; doggy) if you don't know what they are called. 行くよ(iku yo) means "let's go", by the way.


8

I think it might be "バカにはやいじゃないか", where "はええ" is a twisted pronunciation of "はやい". And the sentence means "(You came back) very early, didn't you"


7

It is the そう of そうです yes. That is it. No deep meaning, nothing.


7

The original question basically comes down to finding an "honorific" way (yes, that dreaded 敬語 thing) of saying だっけ? or でしたっけ? I would say a good and polite alternative would be to replace those expressions with でしょうか? To say テストは次の月曜日{げつようび}だっけ? you say テストは次の月曜日でしょうか? Of course depending on what comes before だっけ and also to whom you are talking, ...


7

The usual placeholder in Japanese is 「なになに」, although type-specific placeholders such as 「だれだれ」 and 「なんとかなんとか」 may be used.


7

Use 「3つのグラフ」 or 「3枚【まい】のグラフ」. Whichever is OK, but maybe the latter will sound just a little bit more formal.


7

じゃねぇか is just a colloquial form of the tag question じゃないか.


7

It's not a word on its own, but a combination of 来い (imperative "come") and や (see #3 in this dictionary entry). As l'électeur pointed out in the comments, it can be understood as a "tough guy's imperative."


7

けれども is a contradictory conjugation expressing something along the lines of "but" or "however." The ど/ども part in this expression is the part that expresses the contradiction. By a means of shortening one's speech (through laziness, etc.) the different forms came into usage. The shortening is analogous to contractions in English (cannot -> can't). As such, ...


7

snailboat has already provided an excellent response, but I'd like to share an online resource that's pretty useful when trying to figure out the pitch accents of any given text. Just stick your Japanese text into Prosody Tutor Suzuki-kun, tweak the settings as you see fit, hit "analyze", and you'll see a rather accurate pitch analysis of the input text. ...


7

Shifting from polite speech to casual speech is usually a gradual and implicit process when a mature adult makes friends with someone. Depending on the situation, it may take months or even years to switch. Actually I often find myself using some polite sentences when I chat with people who have been my close friends more than 10 years. Here are some random ...


7

感じ(だ) is more colloquial than 感じがする, but I would say they're also slightly different. 感じだ doesn't necessarily have something to do with feelings, e.g. そんな感じ(だ) (It's) something like that Likewise 恋した時ってどんな感じなんですか could be asking about other circumstances than feelings, although feelings would be an obvious topic when talking about love: "What's it like ...


7

やっぱり has several meanings, such as: やっぱり、思った通りだ。 -- It is so, just as I thought/expected/suspected. -> That's exactly what I thought. / I knew it. やっぱり、こっちにします。 -- On second thought, / I changed my mind, I'll pick this one. それでも / なんだかんだ言っても、やっぱり嬉しいです。 -- But I'm happy, nonetheless / all the same / after all. Here in your sentence, I ...


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