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"My name is Tanaka."


March 3, 2018



What's the difference between ともうします and といいます?


as far as i understood, ともうします indicates the name a person has but といいます means a person is called by....for eg. マリアともうします, マといいます。(my name is maria, but i am called as ma)...please correct me if i am wrong


I didn't even know I had this question, but thank you for learning me something : )


In english, Sharing knowledge to someone else is "teaching", common mistake i used to make


Idk why you're getting downvoted, you are correct. Should be thanks for teaching me not thanks for learning me.


I know, i was just being stupid


Old Norse, huh. Here in the deep South USA we say "larn'd.". And I thought it was just because we were a bunch of dang'd idjuts. [And we complain about learning Japanese! ]


It's not standard English, but there are some dialects that use the word "learn" as a synonym for "teach."


申す is also humble speech while 言う isn't.


They both have the same meaning to address one's name. But the former is used as part of polite speech (teineigo).


I don't know, but it gave "田中ともうします。, たなかといいます。" as two possible correct answers. But the latter, even substituting Kanji for Tanaka, isn't possible with the listed options.


田中ともうします is used pretty much when you are exchanging business cards on the job, and introducing yourself who you are. for common way is, '田中です’ ’私の名前は田中です’


The only native Japanese speakers who would use "私の名前は[name]です" are young children in formal situations. To sound natural you should use "[name]ともうします" for polite and formal interactions, and simply "[name]です" for casual interactions.


I wish i could hit the up arrow 10 times for this. Apparently I have been introducing myself as a child would... lol


me too :-(. 8 years meeting Japanese customers and co-workers. And even none of the latter pointed it out :-(


They're too polite to point it out. I watched a video where a native speaker explains that they dont use pronouns and its very contextual based conversation. He says he can spot amateurs when they use pronouns lol.


私の名前は…です。 sounds like something Google translate would come up with. Do probably you just sounded like a foreigner with questionable learning techniques.


Well you are just learning Japanese, so I think it's forgivable and not so uncommon in this case :P

I imagine it's the same as being a kid and learning how your own language works as well.


What about 僕の?


If i understand correctly, this would typically be used by young males (or tomboyish girls) in a casual setting


What would you suggest in a casual setting? 俺? 自分? I usually use 僕


Why do you use と ? Like [name]と もうします/いいます


As I understand it works replacing "" in english. For example, My name is "Tom" , と replaces the ""


What's the difference between this sentence. And 'Watashi no name wa... '


Xと申します (x to moushi masu) is a more polite way of introducing yourself.


Xと申します (x to moushi masu) is a polite way of introducing yourself


(I'm speaking as someone who learned Japanese in a high school on an American base in Japan so I've skipped to where my ability stops)

名前 「なまえ」is name. So my name is gets said 名前は[name]です。ともします is more like "they call me" or "I go by" and is a formal form for like business interactions. So not only is this a mistranslation by the app, this is also not the natural way people learn how to speak. Did everyone learn the 名前は form earlier? In which case not an issue. It just means the app translation is a bit off

Slightly related is I wish this would designate when something is formal like this, every day polite, or just casual. I feel like that would clear up issues like these


Good points. As I recall, 名前は[name]です。was our first introduction (no pun intended) to giving folks our name.

Japanese was a long time coming to Duo, and (like almost all of the Duo languages) has a long way to go. Japanese has, by virtue of being recent and difficult, perhaps further to go than most. But they are making improvements every so often, and I appreciate the hard work the volunteers put into it.

Still, there are many things that I am sure most of us would like. A hint as to formality (or lack thereof) would be great. Mirai Japanese spends (not surprisingly) a lot of time on the formal vs. informal and humble, on in-group and out-group. And their quizzes always state which they want. With Duo you often can only guess as to which they want by looking at the selection of word blocks available. And often you get frustrated by answering to "It is a cat" with "Neko desu"; only to have it reject "Inu desu" as the answer to "It is a dog." - when they now want something much more formal and much longer for an answer.

I guess we have to resort to the same thing I have so often told my students: "Just think of it as a learning experience." [Usually followed by me having to duck a barrage of pencils and paper balls. ]


That makes a lot of sense actually. I just get a little frustrated because I have knowledge of some things but not others. Like I can recognize that ともします is formal but I can't remember which kanji is ひだり and which one is みぎ and am I really sure ひだり is left. I'm fluent when it comes to talking about myself, ordering food/paying for things, asking where things are but then I'm lacking vocabulary I should have, directions, etc. I think we could really benefit from concentrated vocabulary learning as well as learning to conjugate as we go along as well. But I've also never made an app like this so all I know is what I want as a learner but not what it takes to teach or to build learning tools.

I do appreciate the response because it did remind me that Japanese is new to duolingo as I'd forgotten. This app is definitely helpful for me in setting learning habits and keeping my structures up to date. I can only hope we get more content that focuses on the things I've mentioned. Though this app has been good for me to not rely on dictionary form like some kind of yakuza boss or gaijin punk


What's the function of the と?

[deactivated user]

    This is a bit tricky to explain, as this doesn't really have a direct equivalent in English. と by itself functions kind of like "and," or a comma in an ordered list. But after a quote, it sort of leads into a "...is what they said" sort of thing: 「十さいです」と少年は言う ("I'm ten years old," the boy says.)

    After a name, と serves a similar purpose. It leads into a "...is my name" sort of thing: 田中と申します (Tanaka is what I am called.)

    I hope that helped at least somewhat. Like I said, this is hard to explain. :/


    What a "もうし"? I can't find it in dictionary.

    [deactivated user]

      There is no such thing. 「ともうします」is a verb on its own, roughly translating to "...is my name." Though the "correct" (?) writing would be 「と申します」, which Duolingo does not (currently) accept.


      any particular reason why you can't say "田中と申す"? I haven't heard it this way anywhere, that's why I'm wondering.

      EDIT: found why, it's because と申します it's part of 謙譲語, basically the humble part of keigo or polite japanese. If you are looking to be polite and and humble yourself at the same time, why would you use the casual form?


      I suppose every verb needs a dictionary form? But yeah, does seem odd, not sure when anyone would use 申す unless they were trying to be a bit avant-garde.


      Why does "田中とまうします" work but "ジョンともうします" doesn't?


      Why do we use the particle と in this situation?


      Are we not allowed to type in Romaji?


      No, since Duolingo has only taught hiragana and kanji (or katakana, if anyone could clear up the different between the two below that would be delightful since I can't tell) and they wouldn't expect you to type in Romaji.


      hiragana is the curvy one


      and katakana is the pointy one



      So hiragana is for like endings, reading vocabulary words until you learn the kanji, and sentence markers to indicate things like time/place/location and to signal the object of the sentence vs the verb. Katakana is for loan words from foreign languages like bread, AC, restroom, etc. Kanji denote words themselves such as love, dog, city names, etc. These get paired with hiragana so you know how to pronounce a specific kanji. Kanji and hiragana all used to be kanji but the kanji that make hiragana were simplified because of how much they were used. This is why there are three "alphabets" even though it would seem simpler to us as outsiders to have one. As someone learning Chinese too, I assure you that you do not want all kanji sentences


      Why cant you just say 田中です


      That would be "I am Tanaka."


      Is "to" a particle here or part of a word? "To" "moushimasu" or "tomoushimasu"?


      It's a particle, specifically the "quotation particle". So far we've learned ”と“ as the particle for grouping nouns together, like how we use "and" or "with" in English, but here it's use to mark what was said or would be said by someone else, in this case what someone one else would call you. the closest English analogue for this would be something like "he/she said..." or "they say that...".


      I like how 申 looks like the Kanji in 田中 fused together.


      How can you write this when there is no script and it doesn't recognise Roomaji


      You can either use the word bank or install a Japanese IME on your device to type answers in directly

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