She is splendid.
This bugs me every time because it is just not something anybody would say.
Checking for examples on imiwa? (which uses examples from tatoeba, I believe), I find
りっぱな としょかん (a nice library)
りっぱな え (a great picture)
りっぱな しんし (a fine gentleman)
りっぱな ひと (a good person)
Does anyone have more people-related uses of りっぱ?
The cases to use about person
1.'りっぱ' is used to the attitude and the action.
eg.A. She has been take care her younger brothers after their parents had died an accident suddenly. She is young. Girls who are the same generation are interested in playing, fashion and boyfriends. But she has never used her salary for her entertainments. She has used her salary to the education of her brothers or so. ’彼女はりっぱです’.
eg.B. The journalist has written the articles about the mafia. It is very danger. There is the possible of her/his death. But s/he has continued to write the truth. 'そのジャーナリストはりっぱだ。'
We use the word to people who are respected.
2.There are another cases.
りっぱな しんし (a fine gentleman) Maybe this is about his appearance (the outside/surface). Typically a gentleman is in proper attire.
I think these are fit following;
the case of 1.道徳的に賞賛に値する, 尊敬または尊重に値するさま
the case of 2.外観上印象的な
"Well-dressed and well-mannered", these phrase are literally? The usage of the dictionary has used 'gentleman' as example. '紳士/gentreman' is required the right behavior not only his outside.
I'm interested in this topic, but I'm not clear on what you meant when you said "it is just not something anybody would say"? Is that referring to: the Japanese sentence (かのじょはりっぱです), the English sentence (she is splendid), or indeed simply the English translation "splendid" itself?
From the title, I think you might be talking about the English sentence.
From the examples however, it looks like you might instead be showing either that the translation "splendid" isn't used ("nice, great, fine, good" instead), or that the predicative form りっぱです isn't used of a person (attributive form "りっぱな" instead).
(Sorry. I'm probably the only person who'd get confused over something like this. I had this same problem in school—where nearly everyone else in class just knew what we had been asked to do, but I would be struggling to decide between what seemed like multiple equally plausible interpretations.) ^^;
Sorry about the confusion. Yes, I meant that "She is splendid" (or "They are splendid", another Duolingo sentence) seems like a strange English sentence, even if you are talking about Beyoncé.
And so I was hoping for some context for the word りっぱ when applied to a person: does it mean they are "good", as in the example I found, or "well-dressed and -mannered", or what?
As for an example of people-related uses of りっぱ.
I tried to find an interesting one and found this in the anime "Full Metal Panic!" (episode 6, at around 15 minutes into the episode)...
Kurz: I'm unable to move at all at this important time. It's so shameful!
Kaname: That's not true! You're doing great!
Kurz: I can't move a damn muscle now that you really need me to. What a loser!
Kaname: That's not true! You've already done so much for me!
As you can see, りっぱ is kind of describing Kurz as a person. But I think really it is speaking more within the context of what he has done or what he is doing.
I guess it's the same as when you say of a comedian, "he is funny". What you really mean is "his jokes are funny", or "he tells funny jokes".
Maybe this didn't really make sense... I'm not sure. ^^;
Though I'm not sure, how about 'WELL DONE'? This is complete form/完了形?
'You've already done so much for me'. I see. I think that Kaname want to tell Kurz everybody can not do as same as you. In other words his behavior/action is equal to admire.
Sorry. I have not watched it.
Ah, okay. Thanks. ^^
Personally, I don't really use the English word "splendid" at all in everyday life. I think that when it's used of a person, then, instead of simply describing the person themselves, what it's usually saying is that something the person does is splendid.
Example — Couple watching an orchestral concert. They neither know any of the musicians nor have ever heard anything about them:
Wife: "What do you think of that pianist?"
Husband: "She is splendid!"
What I believe the husband truly means is that the pianist plays the piano splendidly. He could have instead said "She is a splendid pianist!". I don't think he's describing the lady as being "splendid" in general, since he doesn't know anything else about her. (However, in a sense he could be thinking she is a splendid person for being someone who plays the piano so well...)
Basically, I think it describes a person within a context rather than describes the person in general. ^^