Translation:How are your parents?
りょうしん means 'parents' in 1st person (my/our parents)
ごりょうしん means 'parents' in 2nd/3rd person (your/his/her/their parents)
More accurately, the ご- is an honorific prefix that makes it more polite/formal. You generally wouldn't be quite this formal when referring to your own parents (to other people), unless the circumstances demanded it.
Why not おりようしん? Is this about animation? Is ご indicative of more respect? Is this something that you would see?: あなたのごねえさん〜
Based on what others have said in another thread, it is based on whether you're using the On or Kun reading of a Kanji character (but it might still be in Hiragana depending on your level in Duolingo).
Generally, use ご for words of Chinese origin as in kanji compounds like 両親, use お for words of Japanese origin.
It kind of indicates more respect. Sometimes. I would add that it does partly seem to have something do with animation because it changes the required amoint of respect. For instance, I hear ご used much less often for inanimate objects or concepts but instead お is used i.e. お時間 o-jikan (another person's time), お水 o-mizu (water), お話 o-hanashi (another's speech), etc.
ご usually seems to be used for people, i.e. ご両親 (another's parents), or ご先祖 go-senzo (another's ancestors), or if talking to a person of high standing ご自分 go-jibun (their honorable self), but honestly there doesn't seem to be a hard-and-fast rule. After all, お is used for another's or one's own siblings and parents. ごねえさん or ごとうさん would be rather strange. I've asked several of my Japanese friends what the rule is and they said ぜんぜん分からない (I don't understand at all). It largely requires learning on a case by case basis.
The same character can also be pronounced おん but it's use is more archaic. Fortunately, one needn't worry much about it unless one is Christian because one of the ways we address God is 天の御父 ten no on-chichi, Heavenly Father.
I think you just use either お or ご before certain words, and using them interchangeably would sound wrong. I don't know if there's any specific rule for when to use one or the other, but I think they're basically the same thing.
Yeah I don't have a solid answer for you, but as someone who grew up speaking Japanese (and lost much of it), it doesn't sound right to mix those interchangeably.
You use different words when speaking about your family or someone else's family.
What your answer marked as correct? When I type it out and it becomes, "ご両親はお元気ですか？" but is marked incorrect. Please address.
It's お/御 for kunyomi and ご/御 for onyomi. The kanji is the same. Usually written in Hiragana.
It's added on to the word to make it more polite. It's used for many other words as well.
Yes I think it should be. DL just hasn't added it yet as a correct answer.
親 (おや) is "parent(s)", but the compound 両親 (りょうじん) means "pair of parents" -- so not just any (two) parents but the two parents of a (specific) child. In the first case the kunyomi (native Japanese) pronounciation is used, while in the latter -- since it is a compound -- the onyomi (borrowed Chinese) pronounciation is used.
"Are your parents doing well?" Is apparently wrong. Even though this is by context.
I put the same thing. I think it would be right its just not in the system?
I'm not a native speaker of English, but doesn't "doing well" have more to do with economy than with health?
English native speaker here. It can indeed have that connotation as well, but it isn't exclusively for asking about someone's financial situation. "Are your parents doing well for themselves?" is the exclusively economic version.
If I write "ok" the right answer is "good" ... if I write "good" then the right answer is "ok" :(
I put "are your parents doing well?" as my answer and got it wrong. Wouldn't this be correct?
You're right, it should be an acceptable answer. Report it so that the course creators can add it.
りょうしんはげんき？/両親は元気? also works for informal situations. Over time of observing Japanese, I've realized that they often exclude most particles.
Like これはなんですか？/これは何ですか? ｗhich can said like これ何？何これ？、これは何？、and (I think) 何だこれ？
Either way, I think it's best to learn the basics of the language first, before you really get into the formalities. From what I heard, even many Japanese people themselves don't like to constantly speak in formal Japanese (what they call ’Keigo', by the way. けいご is using 'です' and 'ます' as apposed to 'る' )
Unless they're around superiors like bosses or something, they'd rather speak in the way that comes more naturally to them, and that typically involves dropping particles like desu/masu or even を.
Of course, it does still depend. Be very careful.
Also, there is a common saying that Japanese don't use question marks, but that is only true to an extent. According to a Japanese man himself, many Japanese DO still use question marks(even if it's not required) simply because it makes it easier to recognize it as a question. I have heard that textbooks don't use question marks, but other that than, it's probably better to use them.
お makes it more polite. In the case of げんき, adding お is pretty much necessary when talking about someone else's health. Since we're talking about ごりょうしん here, the implication is clear that you are talking about the listener's parents, not your own.
I don't know but I also think it should be correct. ... When "goryoushinhaogenkidesuka?" is typed out, it becomes, ご両親はお元気ですか？. the answer "ご両親はお元気ですか？" is marked incorrect. How is this incorrect?
Sorry, why it can't be translated as "are parents fine?". I mean, if somebody is asking about his/her parents what the phrasing will be?
Well, "are parents fine?" isn't natural English. The only situation I can think of that makes sense is if someone is restricting people's access to a place, but you want to know if they will allow people who have children in... and that's definitely not the same thing as what the Japanese sentence is asking.
If somebody was to ask about his/her own parents, they would use similar but subtly different phrasing. Typically either:
- 両親 (りょうしん) はげんきですか？
- うちの親 (おや) はげんきですか？
Notice that they wouldn't use ご in front of 両親 or お in front of げんき. This is because both ご and お make the phrases "honorific", and it's not socially acceptable to use these prefixes when referring to yourself or your own family.
Tfw when you actually need kanjis instead of plain hiraganas to understand unfamiliar words
"Are your parents alright?" is not an accepted translation. Should it be or shouldn't it?
That's a tricky one... Context would make a big difference, but I would say it shouldn't be accepted.
To me, "are your parents alright?" carries the implication that they were not alright before or there is some reason to believe that they might not be alright. The Japanese sentence doesn't have that same implication; you would use 大丈夫【だいじょうぶ】instead of お元気 if you wanted to get that meaning.
Shouldn't げんき without お in front of it be acceptable? I understand that it お元気 is more polite, but would it still be wrong that way?
It's not wrong - it should be acceptable without お. If you got marked down for it, report it for the course developers to fix.
Would you mind telling me how to do that? I've already finished it; is there some way to report it after the fact?
I don't know of any way to report it after the fact. If you really wanted to though, you could go back through this level until you get this question again, get it "wrong" again, then click the flag and select "My answer should have been accepted". Otherwise, just keep it in mind that this flagging system exists and some (often many) acceptable answers haven't yet been added to the list.