"あの、すみません。"

Translation:Um, excuse me.

June 9, 2017

70 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Kece8

Why is it 'ah' here and not 'um'? Shouldn't 'um' be an acceptable translation?

June 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/BridgetKra2

Yes, あの here is basically just a filler word, or an interrupter. Ah and um are both acceptable

June 13, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/EliseuSant533325

Um é Português, talvez eles confundiram

December 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PedroHRoGs

Acho que eh 'Um' no sentido de 'hmm'...

January 30, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Vincius703683

do nada os cara invade a sessão dos gringo kkk

May 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/fenglucia

あの is in anime all the time. Couldn't be more familiar with it.

July 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Shaun510462

えと Is also familiar in anime.

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AVAX3M

ええと。。。

September 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/LuisRolando3

I've heard えっと a lot more in anime

November 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Will-J-Crawford

I say ポテート, you say ポタート…

November 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Janeen459786

Yeah!

November 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/keneisha11844

えと。。。UwU

January 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Janeen459786

Totally! Hearing it made me smile lol!

November 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Humon98

Haha we´re all just here to watch anime in the original version.

May 17, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Chrabia297

えと:)

June 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Ainu00

The sound え is actually prolonged here: ええと。

September 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AhmetHanpa

えっと*

November 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/_jclipse

あの is one of many useful filler words you should use in conversation when you slow down to try to remember what word to use. It'll make your speech sound more natural and fluent, even if you aren't.

October 10, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/shaykevichd

Doesn't ません imply negation?

June 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Pepzis

Generally yes, but in this case すみません by itself is an expression, not a conjugation or negation of something.

Later some verbs will sound like it (like 住みません (すみません) = to not reside), but the context (VERY important in japanese) will tell you what it means.

June 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/JoshuaLore9

I agree with you that it's best to think of すみません as an expression, but I belieive the expression did come from a negative conjugation.

In the same vein as はじめまして originated from a longer phrase, I think すみません came from something along the lines of 「ご迷惑をかけて気が済みません」 meaning "I've inconvenienced you, and I don't feel at ease about it".

August 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Will-J-Crawford

Ah, like the German "es tut mir Leid" (literally, "it causes me pain")?

November 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/JoshuaLore9

Perhaps? My German isn't very ... existent >_>

But 気が済まない【きがすまない】is an expression describing more of an antsy or agitated feeling, rather than physical pain.

November 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Will-J-Crawford

Well, there is scientific research suggesting that such pain is experienced in the brain exactly the same way as physical pain :) but I think "it pains me to think [that I hurt you]" is a good way to apologise :)

November 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/RuizAPR

You are correct. すみません indeed comes from the verb 済む (すむ), which means "to settle," "to manage with," "to be okay with," with the expression meant to imply that one is not okay with the actions that they are committing or have committed. You also see this verb used in なくて済む, ~ずに済む, to mean "to be okay with not doing," or more broadly, "to get by without" or "not have to."

January 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/JacobS.Fou

Um excuse me

July 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/DerrickMcClure1

I wrote "Oh, sorry", and was corrected to "AH, sorry". Crazy.

August 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/kjhst123

This might be a dumb question, but how/why is there a specific word for "um"? Isn't that a sound you make when you can't think of what to say?

June 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/trishka9

Isn't "um" a specific word for um?

June 30, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Igi834685

Isnt excuse me a good answer here?

June 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AstonMarti5

it should be

July 30, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Stephen654875

It doesn't like uh, or urm

August 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Will-J-Crawford

doesn't seem to like "Er, " either

November 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/daadaadaaren

i've heard of すいません, is that actually a thing?

August 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/JoshuaLore9

Yes, it's quite common actually. But it's kind of an accepted bastardization of the expression, and as such, すません is more formal/correct.

August 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Akai_Ito

Do あの and えと mean the same thing?

August 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/KendellWil1

Not quite. They both have different functions equal to "um", "ah", "uh," etc. in English. "Etto" is most commonly used for when you are thinking of something and not sure what to say, like if you're stumbling on a sentence or don't know the answer to a question. It can also be a reaction sort of like "huh..?" in some situations. "Ano", on the other hand, is like a more polite "um." You use it if you want to hedge what you're saying - like if you're trying to correct someone in a polite way (eg. "Um, I thought it was...), or know what you're going to say but want to sound a little unsure for politeness and so on. The example here is "Um, excuse me," and I imagine this is meant to be read like you're asking for directions from a stranger or something like that, because it sounds very polite. Long explanation but I hope it made sense! Sorry for no kana, I don't have a Japanese keyboard on my phone.

September 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/RayhanRach

あのねあのね

September 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/sihaz

Er or erm should be okay too...

February 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Siroggak

What does "sumimasen" have in common with "arimasen"? I mean, both of them are polite words, but why exactly? Can someone break it down for me?

July 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/kai19154

They're unrelated; one means "excuse me" and the other means "there isn't". -masen is the polite negative conjugation of a verb, usually, so it's used in "there isn't". As for it being used in "sumimasen", it doesn't really show negation.

July 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/BJCUAl

Actually, grammatically, sumimasen is the polite-negative form of sumu (to settle, to be clear). This word, over time, has evolved into a fixed one-word catch-all expression of 'Excuse me', or 'Apologies'.

As far as why it is polite, it is because they follow the -masen form. More simple forms end in -nai. Sumanai becomes sumimasen. Aru becomes arimasen.

December 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/brunofrra

I heard sumimasen means (it is) unexcusable! Apparently a polite way of asking for excuse.

July 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Trekko7271

They should have just left it as Um and not Ah.

January 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/KevinLehtl

Why in comments it's "Um" rather than "Ah" it simply makes things more confusing to learner when previously you are not introduced to the word "Ah" being used anywhere

January 26, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/JoshuaLore9

Are "um" and "ah" really that different, different enough to be confusing?

Hate to break it to you, but "um" and "ah" are practically identical. Same with "erm" and "uh". If you're a native English speaker, which this course is aimed at, this should be a non-issue.

February 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Juliette780952

"Um" and "ah" are different to me. Not confusing, but different. "Um" has more of a lightly uncertain/questioning tone to it. Um, excuse me? Um, I guess you could say that. Um, yeah, okay, I'll meet you at 6 instead of 7.

"Ah" is more positive, more affirmative. Ah, I see your point, yes. Ah, sure, let's do that next week. Ah, super idea.

February 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Bob864206

Erm??? this bit of sound is not in my lexicon.

July 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Cloud722499

British people say err, not um. Should be accepted

September 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/DerrickMcClure1

ENGLISH people say err. Scottish people say EH... ええ if you prefer it in Japanese.

September 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Will-J-Crawford

English people say "er", no rolling of the "r" (that's Dutch- or Scotsmen) ;o)

November 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/iad58g
  • 1017

As has been pointed out, ‘Er, excuse me’ should be accepted too.

March 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/PedroBohWe

I tried "hey" just to see if worked and no, even though i would argue that it could be used in this case. I think duolingo doesn't want to encourage too much improvisation as this could cause confusion later.

March 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/GOMUGOMUNOMEME

They added filler words? Huh!

May 1, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Hector843229

Couldn't ”あの” be translated as "that" also?

June 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/iad58g
  • 1017

Only when it precedes a noun, which is not the case here.

June 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/KengaiWilb

This is stupid

December 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AVAX3M

Um, excuse me.

December 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/wigglysquire

Ive never said or heard an American say Ah, excuse me in my life.

August 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/lightfox27

Why not "hey"?

June 13, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Lissidragon

"hey" generally isn't a filler word. Also "hey, excuse me" is rather rude in English.

June 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/kai19154

Ano can be used to call someone's attention apart from meaning "um", but I agree, "hey" isn't a good translation of that. I'd almost translate "ano" as "excuse me", but that'd make the sentence redundant. I guess it's all about

C O N T E X T

July 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Will-J-Crawford

Unless it's "hey, excuse me, you seem to have dropped this [very expensive thing]". It would then be rude not to.

November 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Barosz1

I don't believe any English-speaking person actually uses ah as a filler word, or to get someone's attention. Sounds retarded.

July 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/aberrant80

It's just something that doesn't happen in your part of the world.

July 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/RobbPorter

I kinda get the downvotes, but his statement is mostly true. I've never heard "ah, excuse me". It's usually err or erm, excuse me, or just a quick Hi. In England at least, dunno about other English speaking cultures?

August 13, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/yuyitou

the downvotes are probably for using the word "retarded".

September 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Will-J-Crawford

Well, that, but mostly it's both wrong and arrogant :o)

November 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/andi_kan

Actually in some Asian countries, it's more like "uh" rather than "um". And the "uh" does sound like "ah", but not the type of "aaah" like eureka. Am I making sense?

May 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/tachy90

i use 'ah' more than i use 'um' fwiw (but i use 'er' more than either)

December 21, 2018
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