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Discussion in '日本語 (Japanese)' started by Errol246, Mar 16, 2013.

  1. Errol246 New Member


    What does this sentence mean exactly?

    I just started writing with a Japanese girl over e-mail, and she wants to know about my nation's culture. Before responding, I want to make sure whether it's ok to use informal language with her or not. My guess as to what this means is that I do not have to use honorific language. Is this the case?

    The girl is 18, and I am 19.

    Thank you!
  2. lrosa Senior Member

    English - Ireland
    Yes, this sentence means that you don't have to use "Keigo" or honorific language. As to what exactly the Japanese girl means when she says this, I am unsure as I have often heard Japanese people use the word 敬語 when they are actually referring to 丁寧語 (Teineigo), i.e. using です instead of だ or 食べます instead of 食べる, etc. My understanding is that 丁寧語 is only one part of what is encompassed by the term 敬語, which is a general system of honorific words and grammatical forms that express differences in social status. Perhaps this page can shed some light on the topic: http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Japanese/Grammar/Honorifics

    Since you are both roughly the same age, I suggest copying the style in which she writes to you.

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