59 votes

What do the shapes △ ◯ ╳ ◻ mean in Japanese? And are there variations in meaning, depending on whether or not the shape is filled?

○ まる OK; correct; yes; supported; available (like ✔; note that the check mark usually means "wrong" in Japanese examinations) masked/censored character (like * in English used to mask ...
naruto's user avatar
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22 votes
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Meaning and usage of やっぱり (矢っ張り)

やっぱり is a colloquial/casual version of やはり. やっぱり/やはり has several meanings/usages. For example... "as expected; as (one) would expect" やはりそれは本当だった。It was true, just as I thought/expected/...
chocolate's user avatar
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20 votes

このとおりよ as an expression

I think the この通り means (or, comes from) something like 「この通り、謝ります(だから許してください)。」 "I'm apologizing like this / as you see (so please forgive me)" or 「この通り、お願いします(だから頼みを聞いてください)。」 "I am begging you like ...
chocolate's user avatar
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19 votes

In Japanese, can we say an object asks a question?

In English, it's common for an inanimate object to serve as the subject of a sentence, almost as if they have its own will. In Japanese, this construction is much less frequently used, making some ...
naruto's user avatar
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Can を used with だ/です? 君沢さんを犯人だと思い込む

AをBだ in isolation makes little sense (although there are minor exceptions). This ~を~だと is a common pattern which appears along with various verbs for assuming, regarding, etc. AをBだと見なす to regard A as ...
naruto's user avatar
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19 votes
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Can I use English in place of katakana?

I think it matters a lot and that it's best to break from the habit if you intend to speak Japanese long-term. I think for place names it's somewhat understandable because the Kana is obviously there ...
sazarando's user avatar
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18 votes
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Difference between もっとも and 一番

Simply, 一番 is colloquial/casual, and 最も is formal/technical. Oh, this is one of the rare cases where 漢語 words are more informal than the 和語 versions. In addition, 最も can only function as a modifier, ...
naruto's user avatar
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18 votes

What's the meaning and usage of ~マシだ

It means "better than something", but there are extra nuances that both choices are bad ones. If you want to say "A is better than B", you can say "BよりAの方が良い" or "BよりAの方がマシだ". Both make sense and ...
Takashi's user avatar
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15 votes
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Difference between チケット, 切符 and 乗車券

チケット: Tickets for theaters, amusement parks, sport games, etc. 切符: Tickets in general used for trains, buses, etc. 乗車券: An official term used by railway companies for a type of 切符. 乗車券 refers to a ...
naruto's user avatar
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when do I have to use naru hodo, and when do I have to use wakarimashita?

Both "naru hodo" and "wakarimashita" mean "I understand," but there is a difference in the usages and nuances between those two words. "Naru hodo" means "...
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How to read 24-hour clock format

You can read the time of day in 24-hour format using the pronunciation for the numbers 13–24 as for the numbers 1–10 followed by 時【じ】, e.g. 15:40 = 15時40分 = じゅうごじ よんじゅっぷん 19:20 = 19時20分 = じゅうくじ ...
Earthliŋ's user avatar
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15 votes
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What is the difference between ayumu, sanpo and aruku?

Difference between ayumu, sanpo and aruku aruku (歩{ある}く) is a general term for to walk. ayumu (歩{あゆ}む) is a little old-fashioned expression for to walk, especially to walk step by step, and it ...
user20624's user avatar
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15 votes
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What's the difference between 「お昼前」 and 「午前」?

午前 (=a.m.) refers to 12 hours from midnight to noon. Likewise, 午後 (=p.m.) refers to 12 hours from noon to midnight. お昼前 refers to a short period before noon. When お昼前 starts is not strictly defined, ...
naruto's user avatar
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Differences between words for "idiot"

馬鹿 vs 阿呆 is an interesting theme on linguistic geography. In fact it's once been thoroughly investigated by a TV program, followed by academia. Here is the full map of local vocabulary for "fool/idiot"...
broccoli forest's user avatar
14 votes

How to use ~先生 properly with co-workers?

This question is largely about culture but a place where culture and language interact. I work at a university in Japan and both on and off campus, we call each other 苗字 (family name)-先生. There's one ...
virmaior's user avatar
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14 votes

What do ー, 「, and 」 mean?

The latter are quotation marks, equivalent to " " in English. For example, the sentence: Mr Tanaka said "Good morning". could be written as something like: たなかさんは「おはよう」といいました。 The former may ...
ConMan's user avatar
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14 votes
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Function of と when used with 続く

This と before 続く is a "friend" of quotative-と. If I have to choose one, it corresponds to this definition of デジタル大辞泉. (文や句をそのまま受けて)動作・作用・状態の内容を表す。引用の「と」。 It says と can broadly mark "the ...
naruto's user avatar
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13 votes
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What is the meaning of しも?

I'm afraid to say that いつしも is very rare, and you can use it naturally only in literary sentences. ~しも was a grammatical element in archaic Japanese (it was a kind of intensifier similar to nothing ...
naruto's user avatar
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Difference between yamero and yamete

Of the two やめろ (yamero) is the bossier one. やめて (yamete) comes across a bit softer; it's basically やめてください (yamete kudasai) minus the ください (kudasai). やめろ (yamero) is actually the imperative form of ...
A.Ellett's user avatar
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13 votes
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Difference between 辺り and 周り

辺り refers to geographically nearby places (usually within a few meters to a few hundred meters). Aの辺り includes both A and nearby places. 周り means "surrounding region/part/place" or "peripheral region"...
naruto's user avatar
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13 votes
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How to properly use とまる/とめる/やむ/やめる/とどまる/とどめる/よす/さす

Broadly speaking, the words can be broken up as follows: 止まる{とまる} and 止める{とめる} 止む{やむ} and 止める{やめる} 止まる{とどまる} and 止める{とどめる} Exceptions: 止す{よす} and 止す{さす} The first three groups are made up of pairs ...
MegaZeroX's user avatar
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12 votes

The correct usage of ~と決める, ~に決める, and ~を決める

1. Basically you follow the next template: (the thing/subject the decision is assigned to, i.e. the direct object) + を (what was decided to be) + に/と + 決めた Based on this, we can also see this ...
Ruri's user avatar
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12 votes
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How to say "I want to rub my face on your cat's fluffy fur" in Japanese

Use the auxiliary ~たい for "I want to ~~". For example: 擦{こす}りたい -- I want to rub 食{た}べたい -- I want to eat 言{い}いたい -- I want to say So I think your sentence could literally ...
chocolate's user avatar
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12 votes
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Why is ば in this sentence?

ば is the accusative particle used in wide area of (northern, as I remember) Kyushu as much as を in Standard Japanese. Etymologically it's from を + は contracted but no longer has share the は sense in ...
broccoli forest's user avatar
12 votes

勝手に, how to use it?

The basic meaning of 勝手に is "of one's own accord", ie. doing something on one's own judgement without consulting anyone else. When used of a person, it usually (but not necessarily always) has ...
Ben Roffey's user avatar
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