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  5. "うちのかぞくは大きいです。"


Translation:Our family is big.

June 10, 2017



So there is a concept in Japan: うち/そと。uchi are the people in your inner circle and soto is outside of it, on an emotional level. This can be singular or plural. So when you hear うち don't just think We or I. Think an emotional feeling of close to home. An example of this that will give some culture shock... In America we have "common courtesy" extended to strangers and phrases like "we often hurt those closest to us". The Japanese will conversely give no attention to a stranger, ( そと) and save all their good emotional energy for those closest to them (うち). So the next time a Japanese person ignores you when you say excuse me, don't assume they're rude. Assume they're saving emotional energy and you are そと. Incidentally, white people will experience this the least because Japanese people are fascinated by them.


The feeling (of fascination) goes both ways!


Urgh... What a thing... ;-;


Can うち also mean house? So would かぞくのうち mean family house or something like that?


うち as in we/our and うち as in house are homonyms. In this case うち does not mean house, it means we, so うちの means our.


But our can also be said ぼくらの, わたしたちの, われらの, おれたちの, ぼくたちの, etc.


Maybe wn shouldn't think of them as seperate homonymn words, but one simpler idea that changes in meaning depending on the surrounding words. That word being close (emotionally) as someone else saying.

うち the noun being home, or place you're emotionally attached to. うち the adjective specifiying which of the noun is closest to you.

So for this sentence, you closest or immediate family.

Or those words are homynyms. I don't know the kanji for うち the adjective.


The kanji for the うち that means home/house is 家.

The kanji for the うち that's being used here as a pronoun is 内 (literally means "inside", which links to Mortal Canem's comment above about the concept of うち referring more to a concept of us as in "me and my inner circle" rather than just a general "us")

From what I understamd though, the Japanese people generally use the hiragana うち rather than the kanji when they're using it as a pronoun. They use the kanji 内 more often when they want to actually convey the literal idea of "inside".


I thought so and I wrote "my family house is big" (I meant "my family has a big house") but it isn't accepted.


They didn't accept it...


The other reason why that doesn't work is because the の particle indicates that うち is the modifier for かぞく. So even if you wanted to takeうち to mean "house", it would translate to "my house's family" which is more than a little odd. "Family's house" would be かぞく の うち


This homophone business is where you'd start needing kanji to differentiate. I've also heard うち as a personal pronoun for I rather than we.




Does 大きい really work here for big (in numbers) as opposed to big (in size, think volume)?


What else would it be? My family are many? We are legion?

You'd be surprised how many metaphors and euphemisms are the same in both languages.


My 先生 told me that if you use "かぞくは大きいです" it gives others the impression that everyone in your family is big/fat.

Instead you should use "かぞくは多いです" as in many. 多い (おおい) = many, numerous


Is 私たちの~ a valid translation for "our" too?


Yes, it would be.


I was under the assumption that かぞく was understood as your family. if you have うちのかぞく would that not literally be "House family"?

Never in my three years of living here in Hokkaido have I heard someone describe "our family" in this way.

Seems a little odd to be teaching Kansai slang specifically


From what I've read, Uchi is a homonym meaning both 'house' and 'we'. There are some other posts which go into more depth about uchi's implications and connotations, so go read those for more detail ^_^


Translated this in my head as かぞこinstead of かぞく, but our octopus is big too. Just not what duo wanted


this is grammatically odd. I think dangling modifier. It may be better to say "we have a big family" or "we have a large family "


I feel like the focus is subtly different though. Much like the difference between saying "I have a blue car", and "My car is blue". I'd use the second in a conversation where my car has already been established as the topic, e.g. by someone asking me what colour my car was.


I can't believe ”We have a big family" isn't accepted...


What is the difference between 私達 and うち?




うち doesn't means "house " as well?


See Thomas and JelisW's comments above.


Does "she have a big family" will be "彼女のかぞくが大きいます。"?


i do not live in my parents house, so to me "my family house is big" makes totally sense.

  • 1107

"Our's is a large family" doesn't please Duo. :(


Translation aside, there's no apostrophe in "ours".

  • 2782

Is there a difference between かぞく and かてい?


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