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Old 2008-02-21, 17:47   Link #1401
tripperazn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richvh View Post
Well, "I can taste iron from the blood in my mouth" is hardly natural phrasing, either. "The taste of iron" may be a bit too 直訳, but "A metallic taste" is something I have seen in English literature. If even that is too obscure/poetic for you, then "The taste of blood" is better than your turn of phrase.

Oh, and the previous sentence (ぶつりと、繊維が切れる感覚。) has nothing at all to do with physics - it's about biting through the lip.
Ah, so that's what 繊維 was referring to. Then it makes a lot more sense. With the mistranslation, there needed to be clarification, but yeah, metallic taste would definitely work now. I updated the wiki with credits to you.
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Old 2008-02-21, 17:48   Link #1402
Asamidori
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Originally Posted by mandarb916 View Post
http://dictionary.goo.ne.jp
和英 radio button is for Japanese to English, and requires Japanese input
英和 radio button is for English to Japanese, and requires English input.
goo dictionary doesn't provide word pronounciation, as far as I know. (Unless I'm blind and have been missing that feature for the past year...)
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Old 2008-02-21, 19:31   Link #1403
mandarb916
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Originally Posted by Asamidori View Post
goo dictionary doesn't provide word pronounciation, as far as I know. (Unless I'm blind and have been missing that feature for the past year...)
oh whoa...it only does pronunciation for certain words...i just occaisionally saw a "play" bar so figured it did it for all the words...my bad
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Old 2008-02-21, 21:12   Link #1404
raikage
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Originally Posted by zka View Post
Heya... Started learning japanese and of course I wonder if there is a nice english to japanese dictionary where you can hear the word that is being shown. For example if I write "sensei" or maybe even in hiragana "せんせい" then I want to be able to hear the word too...

Anyone who has bookmarked such a site ?.. All the ones I can find are just the regular ones
Not sure of the practicality of such a site.

Once you learn how hiragana is pronounced, it's all the same.

It's not like English, where "e" could be pronounced as "ee" or "eh"; where "b" could be pronounced as "bee" or "buh".

"せ" is always seh. It's never "see."

There are intonational differences, like ame (rain) vs ame (candy) but offhand, I don't think people would need such a site.
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Old 2008-02-22, 06:42   Link #1405
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>nikorai

You mixed up the matter of justice with the one of economics. You could (or should) tolerate miseraeble Jean Valjean taking away something which you temporally do not need, but it does not mean that he has the right to steal. And, as for the legitimacy of translation, see my previous comment.

Anyway, OK, I agree that further discussion will be in vain. We could stop now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by raikage View Post
Once you learn how hiragana is pronounced, it's all the same.

It's not like English, where "e" could be pronounced as "ee" or "eh"; where "b" could be pronounced as "bee" or "buh".

"せ" is always seh. It's never "see."
(The information below is for the advanced; beginners may be confused)

It's not always true. For example, "ん" is pronounced at least in three distinct ways: [n] [m] [ng], according to the following consonant. See, 簡単 [ka-n-ta-n], 半端 [ha-m-pa], 版画 [ha-ng-ga]. "す" at the end of a sentence is often pronouced [s], rather than [su]. Namely, します [si-ma-s]. And of course you know the "は" problems.

Professional annoucers and voice actors (seiyu) are especially trained to speak beautiful Japanese. They must distinguish "が" in 私が from "が" in "がんばる".

Therefore I recommend not to rely solely on the spelling, if you want to be fluent, though it hardly causes serious problems in daily conversation.
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Old 2008-02-22, 07:12   Link #1406
Tri-ring
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LiberLibri View Post
>nikorai


It's not always true. For example, "ん" is pronounced at least in three distinct ways: [n] [m] [ng], according to the following consonant. See, 簡単 [ka-n-ta-n], 半端 [ha-m-pa], 版画 [ha-ng-ga]. "す" at the end of a sentence is often pronouced [s], rather than [su]. Namely, します [si-ma-s]. And of course you know the "は" problems.
Actually, no they are all pronounced n as in ka-n-ta-n, ha-n-pa(ha-nn-pa) and ha-n-ga (or ha-nn-ga) shortening the n sound but ka-n-ta-n can also be pronounce in the same way where you shorten the middle n sound to nn. There are no distinguishable difference in prounouceation just intonations are different.

Japanese pronounciation is probably the simplest with only 5 vowels a i u e o which is the same as Roman. There was time when we distinguished イ and ヰ エ and ヱ but those days are long gone.
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Old 2008-02-22, 07:34   Link #1407
Slice of Life
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Originally Posted by Tri-ring View Post
Actually, no they are all pronounced n as in ka-n-ta-n, ha-n-pa(ha-nn-pa) and ha-n-ga (or ha-nn-ga) shortening the n sound but ka-n-ta-n can also be pronounce in the same way where you shorten the middle n sound to nn.
Careful. The syllabic n is pronounced as m before b, p, m. That's why the traditional Hepburn romanization even wrote it that way: e.g. sempai.

This has something to do with the 'laziness' of the mouth, simply speaking, and thus happens in a lot of languages, e.g. in German, and maybe also in English. Nevertheless, most native German speakers aren't aware of that fact because they're doing it subconsciously. They also aren't easily convinced because as soon as they concentrate on what they are saying they're automatically pronouncing things like they think it is right. It's like a watched kettle. I bet it's the same in Japan.
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Old 2008-02-22, 08:03   Link #1408
nikorai
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Perhaps it is close to 'n' but my textbook specifies that 'n' is pronounced as 'm' before b and p
and as 'ng (like in the words as 'sing' 'king' etc) before 'k' and 'g'. Also japanese n is different from english because it is considered a separate syllable.

Quote:
And of course you know the "は" problems.
Yes and when typing romaji japanese people put ha both when its ha and wa.
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Old 2008-02-22, 09:52   Link #1409
Tri-ring
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Quote:
Careful. The syllabic n is pronounced as m before b, p, m. That's why the traditional Hepburn romanization even wrote it that way: e.g. sempai.
Some how I think this is over exaggerated since it is not a clear m(ム) sound but an intermediate between a "m" and a "n".
ん is never a clear "n" but crossover between "ヌ", "ム" and "ウン" since Japanese pronounciation doesn't have a consonant only vocalization.
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Old 2008-02-22, 12:16   Link #1410
LiberLibri
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>Tri-ring

You misunderstand a few facts.

1. The latest version of Japanese orthograpy has no more than one century. It was promulgated soon after the WW2. The Allied Force considered the previous version (by Teika FUJIWARA, 1162-1241) was so difficult for not-highly-educated people that it had prevented the development of popular democracy in Japan. The working schedule was too tight to make a coherent and easy system of writing, thus some difficulties like "は" problems were left.

2. There is a language which has only three vowels. See: Kalaallisut language
Japanese people too easily assume their language is somehow special, e.g., as the simplest / the hardest in the world.

3. Japanese language certainly has sounds which consist of "consonant without vowel", although most native speakers are unaware of the existence, as Slice of Life aptly explained. You seem to confuse real sounds with morae (mental unit of a sound as distinguished from the physical sound).
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Old 2008-02-22, 13:02   Link #1411
Asamidori
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Originally Posted by nikorai View Post
Yes and when typing romaji japanese people put ha both when its ha and wa.
Only when the original is は. If the original is わ, they would still write it as 'wa'.

...Cause I constantly make the same mistake when doing lyric transliteration too, writing the 'wa' sound as 'ha' because of the original word.
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Old 2008-02-22, 16:32   Link #1412
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Originally Posted by Slice of Life View Post
This has something to do with the 'laziness' of the mouth, simply speaking, and thus happens in a lot of languages, e.g. in German, and maybe also in English. Nevertheless, most native German speakers aren't aware of that fact because they're doing it subconsciously. They also aren't easily convinced because as soon as they concentrate on what they are saying they're automatically pronouncing things like they think it is right.
Hum... I don't think it's mostly about thinking how the pronounciation is right. Most people do this because they're used to it, because it's easier (as you said) and because of the German dialects. It's very hard to hide them... foreigners don't recognize, but in most cases I can tell where people come from just after hearing how they speak. If their hometown isn't Hannover .

After about 15 hours of Japanese within the last 5 days, I don't have a problem with the pronounciation of the particles. IMHO you can cet the feeling for that pretty fast... also for the pronounciation of the Japanese "u", I tend to swallow it in most words, remaining just a exhalation of breath. futatsu -> f*hhh*tats*hhh*. Is it really true that the ability to hear the "U" is some sort of "degenerated" within the ears of the 日本人 ?
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Old 2008-02-22, 23:35   Link #1413
esfir
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Originally Posted by tripperazn View Post
My suggestion: watch more raw anime. Especially ones that take place with high school kids. You'll hear so much of this slang, it sounds natural after a while. Tae Kim's guide does a pretty good job of covering general Japanese slang for such a short section.

My problem is the exact opposite of yours, grammatically complex sentences give me a headache, especially descriptions!! I can easily pick out what いっすよ。 means though.

It's a problem for me since I'm afraid of talking to native speakers now. I just KNOW this anime slang is going to pour out of my mouth without me even noticing and I'll come off as extremely rude.
i've been focusing on doing just that as of recent, as not only is my knowledge of slang abysmal, but i have terrible listening skills. i'd say my knowledge of japanese is about 90% reading&writing, and 10% speaking&listening, as i am much, much more of a reader of manga than i am a viewer of anime.


one trick that i learned regarding japanese grammar that helped me out a lot--and that i still fall back on from time to time--is to read sentences backwards. for example:
「もちろん,世界中の人が血液型で4種類の運勢に分かれているなどということを信じているわけではないが。 」
but it is not that / i believe in things like / separating into 4 different categories / by blood type / the people of this world / of course

"of course, it's not that i believe that the people throughout the world should be separated based upon their blood type." (my translation is not verbatim, obviously)

it's a little sloppy, and it may seem like a bad habit to develop, but i actually find it helped me early on.


i'm actually rather afraid, myself, of what it will be like if i ever try to communicate to someone in japanese, because i think of everything in dictionary terms, rather than in polite terms (i mean, for example, 「いる」 rather than 「います」). i don't know if i will be able to switch back and forth so easily between formal and informal speech.
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Old 2008-02-22, 23:54   Link #1414
tripperazn
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Originally Posted by esfir View Post
i've been focusing on doing just that as of recent, as not only is my knowledge of slang abysmal, but i have terrible listening skills. i'd say my knowledge of japanese is about 90% reading&writing, and 10% speaking&listening, as i am much, much more of a reader of manga than i am a viewer of anime.


one trick that i learned regarding japanese grammar that helped me out a lot--and that i still fall back on from time to time--is to read sentences backwards. for example:
「もちろん,世界中の人が血液型で4種類の運勢に分かれているなどということを信じているわけではないが。 」
but it is not that / i believe in things like / separating into 4 different categories / by blood type / the people of this world / of course

"of course, it's not that i believe that the people throughout the world should be separated based upon their blood type." (my translation is not verbatim, obviously)

it's a little sloppy, and it may seem like a bad habit to develop, but i actually find it helped me early on.


i'm actually rather afraid, myself, of what it will be like if i ever try to communicate to someone in japanese, because i think of everything in dictionary terms, rather than in polite terms (i mean, for example, 「いる」 rather than 「います」). i don't know if i will be able to switch back and forth so easily between formal and informal speech.
Yeah, I really hate to read in Japanese since I'm so slow, so because of my translation project, I don't read manga anymore. I wasn't used to it either, but you have to watch raws to force yourself to pay attention to the Japanese. A lot of speech patterns will be obvious to you as you hear them. Unfortunately, a lot of fansub groups don't translate them. In Gundam 00, Lockon Stratos uses the form "~てやがれ" a lot to make his speech very rough and intimidating, but you wouldn't get that from the subs. Read Tae Kim's, it's pretty much what I learned the hard way that you could learn in 10 min.

Reading backwards is a really good strategy for literal translation. I tend to read and understand the sentence then make up a translation based on what I think best fits the Japanese meaning, not the original text. I think it improves readability, which to me matters more than faithfulness to the original. A lot of people don't agree with this method though, especially fansubbers. There was this huge argument over at the fansubbing board here about this just yesterday.

Just today, there was this new Japanese scientist at my lab who looked like he needed help from me. I asked "Do you need help?", and he said "What?". I just sat there thinking, should I clarify with ”何か用?”. But that was impolite, I didn't know him. By the time I thought of ”何か用事がありますか?” I still wasn't sure that was polite enough and like 2 min had passed. Awkward moment there.
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Old 2008-02-23, 06:56   Link #1415
LiberLibri
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Isegrim View Post
After about 15 hours of Japanese within the last 5 days, I don't have a problem with the pronounciation of the particles. IMHO you can cet the feeling for that pretty fast... also for the pronounciation of the Japanese "u", I tend to swallow it in most words, remaining just a exhalation of breath. futatsu -> f*hhh*tats*hhh*. Is it really true that the ability to hear the "U" is some sort of "degenerated" within the ears of the 日本人 ?
Ah, like that. Like "H" in French, there exists U sound in the speaker's brain, though it does not come out into the listener's ear. Modern Japanese tend to skip the sound except it appears in the head of a word (such as 牛 [u-si]). I think the flood English words has mainly caused this phenomenon though I have no sufficient proof; they learn コミック should be [ko-mi-k], not [ko-mi-ku], therefore ク is associated with [k], I suppose.

Anyway, sticking to the phonological accuracy may be harmful for beginners. ク is [ku], that's OK.

Quote:
Originally Posted by esfir View Post
i'm actually rather afraid, myself, of what it will be like if i ever try to communicate to someone in japanese, because i think of everything in dictionary terms, rather than in polite terms (i mean, for example, 「いる」 rather than 「います」). i don't know if i will be able to switch back and forth so easily between formal and informal speech.
From pragmatic point of view, I believe you don't need to be so anxious. Natives are usually generous on grammatical errors by non-natives (as English natives kindly accept my poor English). My German teacher, who never uses polite terms even in the conversation with her boss, is loved by everyone.

Backward translation - that is what I was used to when I learned English (though in reverse)! But it hinders speedy reading, so I exercised to read onwards.

>何か用事がありますか?

Say "何かご用でしょうか?" in the next opprtunity
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Old 2008-02-23, 07:09   Link #1416
tripperazn
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Originally Posted by LiberLibri View Post
>何か用事がありますか?

Say "何かご用でしょうか?" in the next opprtunity
Well, if you say that it doesn't really matter, then I'm just going to talk informally, since I can't keep up the formal form for long anyway. Because I don't use masu-kei, I get nervous when I try and make dumb mistakes. At the time, I didn't even realize that 用 and 用事 meant completely different things.

Thanks, if I need to say it later, I'll use you suggestion.
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Old 2008-02-28, 06:22   Link #1417
Yaoi_Daisuki
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hey guys, any idea why baka in written in katagana instead of hiragana? ?.?
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Old 2008-02-28, 06:56   Link #1418
FatPianoBoy
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Stylistic spelling. The kanji for 'baka' is 馬鹿.
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Old 2008-02-28, 07:00   Link #1419
tripperazn
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Originally Posted by FatPianoBoy View Post
Stylistic spelling. The kanji for 'baka' is 馬鹿.
I've actually been meaning to ask, just what does "stylistic spelling" using katakana mean/denote? I know it's something like emphasis, but that's kinda vague.
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Old 2008-02-28, 07:05   Link #1420
FatPianoBoy
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Vague, but that's pretty much it. I've heard it likened to italics in English.
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