Before friend do, this is my disclaimer: few of these Japanese slang words space NSFW. They’re also not to be supplied lightly in every conversation, yet to it is in used as necessary with near friends and peers.
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Japanese slang is regularly hard to learn. It’s virtually never taught in textbooks (and what lock list together “slang” is really simply casual speech, or very outdated). Due to the fact that Japanese is together a polite language, there’s periodically a misconception that slang isn’t supplied often. But, Japanese in reality boasts tons of slang words!
It’s tough to teach slang since the native are regularly blended indigenous a long string of various other words or pop society references. Celebrities affect slang, the web morphs new shorthand every day, and Japan is infamous for shortening and also combining words.
Even much more than that, relying on the region of Japan, you will do it hear fairly a distinction in tones, sentence endings, and also various new slang only talked in that region.
But knowledge slang is crucial to having actually a deeper knowledge of the language and sounding prefer a native. So, listed below are some typical Japanese slang words, phrases, and also swear words you’ll hear. I’ve likewise included some that are exclusive come Tokyo-ben (Tokyo dialect) and Kansai-ben (Osaka/Kyoto/Kobe dialect), which are two the the most usual dialects spoken in Japan.
Everyday Japanese Slang
Most Japanese slang is supplied for descriptions, greetings, and also outbursts the emotion. Unlike English, over there aren’t too many slang terms to speak to other world (at the very least not ones that room nice to say). You i will not ~ really discover a translation because that “dude,” because that instance. To be slangy with nicknames, friend would generally shorten someone’s name and include a cute honorific (or omit the honorific altogether).
This is part of why slang is so difficult to translate and learn: you won’t discover a direct translation between languages, you need to learn them by context.
But this slang words have the right to be heard everyday approximately Japan, especially among the younger generation. You’ll hear them often in Japanese dramas and also reality shows, too! for this reason they’re easy to choose up and use and sound really natural.
A rapid grammar note: slang native can often be written in either hiragana or katakana, yet if the an i-adjective, the “i” is frequently written in hiragana, also if the remainder of words is in katakana. That’s since adjectives can be conjugated, and also the part that it s okay conjugated is the “i.” You’ll view them written in either kana, though, and also both room correct.
Anway, through all the in mind, below are some Japanese slang native to gain you started:
やばい have the right to mean… anything. That covers everything from “terrible”, “ridiculous”, and also “crappy” to “amazing” and “awesome.” the literal definition is “dangerous,” but is used like “wicked” in English. It could be both great and bad.
This one is incredibly common in day-to-day speech all approximately Japan. You’ll likewise hear that shortened come ヤバ (yaba) often, specifically by men.
This is the short, slangy kind of the adjective うるさい (urusai), which method to be “annoyingly noisy.” once it’s shortened to ウザイ, though, that takes ~ above a little of a stronger definition like “what a pain” or “pain in the ass.” (Although not as rude as utilizing that phrase in English.) the can also be offered to describe someone gloomy, v an Eeyore-like personality native Winnie the Pooh. It’s provided to refer frustration through other human being or situations, and also it’s often used virtual as well.
This one is brief for 気持ち悪い (kimochi warui), which means something offers you a “bad feeling.” 気持ち悪い is regularly used to describe any kind of bad feeling, favor feeling noble or sad. It can also be offered to explain something that repulses you.
As for キモい, that only method “gross,” “disgusting,” or “ew.” You have the right to use it as an exclamation favor “Ew!” or say キモいだね (kimoi da ne) come say the “Disgusting, right?”
イケメン is offered to talk around good-looking men with a very particular style. They’re usually well dressed, intelligent, and also slender, with husky voices and aloof personalities. Think that this together Japan’s version of “tall, dark, and handsome.”
It’s frequently used come talk around celebrities, but any man have the right to be concerned as イケメン. It comes from the native ikeru for “cool” and menzu for the English-derived word for “men.”
マジ or マジで (maji de) is provided as an exclamation of “Seriously?!” or “For real?!” It comes from the indigenous 真面目 (majime) which means “serious.”
This is an amazing slang term because it acknowledges just how deep we’ve gone into the digital era. Us don’t have a term favor this in English! リア充 way is a portmanteau word because that “real world”, リアルワールド (riaru wa-rudo), and also “satisfied”, 充実 (juujitsu).
It’s offered to describe civilization who would quite be the end in the genuine world, enjoy it life. Or, who space satisfied through their genuine life fairly than an digital persona. That the the opposite of オタク, which means someone that is a nerd, an introvert, or a homebody who is dependency on your persona online.
If you desire a greeting closest come “What’s up, dude?” or “Yo, man!”… Well, this is it. It’s a shortened kind of the greeting おはようございます (Ohayou gozaimasu, “Good morning”). It’s kind of prefer surfer-speak, and it’s supplied by males to greet each other.
半端ない (hanpa nai)
This one is provided the same method やばい is. It method “insane,” “kickass,” “awesome,” or “outrageous.” words hanpa itself method “halfway” or “unfinished.” since it’s supplied in that negative form with nai, you’re saying something’s “not half-assed, that whole-assed.” and therefore, the amazing.
This one comes from the Japanese onomatopoeia phrase, ムカムカする (mukamuka suru), which means to obtain angry, to be pissed off. つく (tsuku) comes from 作る (tsukuru), “to make.” for this reason this phrase is offered to speak something has made friend pissed off, or irritated you. The a strong phrase, yet a common complaint.
This means, “That!” or “Exactly!” It’s supplied like English slang once we agree with something someone said, and also we simply reply through “This!” Meaning, us were thinking the very same thing and 100% agree.
Short for お疲れ様でした (otsukaresama deshita), definition “you worked hard” or “good job.” You can use it together a slangy goodbye.
Used the same way as マジ, it way “seriously” or “for real.”
This translates as “the lowest.” yet as a slang term, it’s supplied to call someone or a instance “the worst!”
This one means “sly” or “sneaky,” but it can additionally be supplied as an exclamation prefer “You suck!” that expresses both disgust and also admiration for someone’s sneaky behavior. Think Ferris Bueller’s Day off — you a little bit dismayed in ~ his poor behavior, but likewise impressed he went with with it.
Bimyou method “questionable,” “iffy,” or also “kind of sucks.” that somewhere in between まあまあ (maa maa, “so-so”) and also まずい (mazui, “disgusting”) or ひどい (hidoi, “awful”).
It way “that’s funny” or “hilarious.” It’s actually a verb, however it’s used an ext like “haha!” in English.
Regional Japanese Slang
Tokyo-ben is what friend hear many in the Japanese media, such as on TV, due to the fact that it’s considered “standard” dialect. Also so, Tokyo is like new York — world from about the country move there, and also their slang gets blended together. The Tokyo an ar does have actually some slang offered most frequently in that area, though. Right here are a few:ちょ (cho): Very, totally. Offered like とても (totemo).すげー (suge-): Amazing. The the shortened, more masculine form of すごい (sugoi).はずい (hazui): Embarrassing. Quick for 恥ずかしい (hazukashii).むずい (muzui): Difficult. Brief for 難しい (muzukashii)うそ！ (uso!): No way! You’re lying!
When most world think of Kansai-ben, lock think that Osaka, return it contains all the Kansai region. That sounds much more harsh than standard Japanese, since it uses much more blunt endings prefer ya nen, na, and hen. In ~ the exact same time, it’s more casual and flowing due to the fact that words become shortened. Right here are a couple of you should understand from the region:めっちゃ (meccha): The very same as ちょ and とても, it method “very.”あほ (aho): Idiot.おおきに (ookini): give thanks to you.ほんま (honma): Really?あかん (akan): Bad, not goodなんやこれ / なんでやねん (nan ya kore / nande ya nen): what’s this?! What the heck?!おもろい (omoroi): Interesting, amusing, funnyちゃうで! (chau de!): the not prefer that! it is wrong!しょんどい (shondoi): Tired, exhausted
Japanese Text and Internet Slang
Ah, Japanese text and also internet slang. This is where things obtain really interesting and also slightly confusing, fast. As soon as it comes to Japanese message lingo, yes a the majority of combining English letters and also Japanese characters into shorthand that renders no feeling upon an initial glance. However knowing these will aid you immerse you yourself in the language online, and also understand what you’re reading on Twitter.
KY is one abbreviation for 空気読めない, i beg your pardon romanized reading “kuuki yomenai.” Thus, it ended up being KY, created in English characters. It means someone “can’t read the air” or is oblivious to the atmosphere of the room or another person.
なう method exactly what it sound like: “now.” It’s provided online come say what someone is law at the moment, especially on Twitter. An example: ランチなう (ranchi nau). “Eating lunch now.”
Another Twitterverse term, it means “favorite” and is offered as a verb. So, you “favorite” a tweet, or “like” a post.
This is short for 構ってちょうだい (kamatte choudai), which means something like “Please allow me know (if we deserve to hang out)”. As a slang term, that posted virtual as a means to say “I’m bored, stop chat” or “Talk come me.”
Yes, just “w.” it’s the Japanese equivalent of “lol” in English message slang. Why “w?” because the word for “laugh” is 笑い (warai), so it starts v “w.” If you wanted to speak “haha” though, you’d usage the kanji itself, typically in parenthesis. Like this: (笑)
Like in English, “Google” has come to be a verb. To say you “googling it,” you usage ぐぐる in Japanese. There’s also the text shorthand, GGRKS. It way ググレカス (gugurekasu), and method “Google that yourself, scum.” that a bit harsh, to say the least, but you’ll view it ~ above the internet.
This is an additional slangy expression that comes from English, and it way “Don’t mind,” “No problem,” or “It was nothing.” You deserve to use the in ar of 何でもない (nande monai).
Another usual shorthand, it way “I need the details!” or “Details, please!” It comes from the Japanese expression 詳しく (kuwashiku), so it’s the very first letter of each syllable as soon as romanized. It’s provided to beg someone for all the deets.
This is supplied everywhere. It’s the abbreviation for ワクワクテカテカ (wakuwaku tekateka). It is onomatopoeia for her heart is racing and you’re trembling v excitement. You can use this because that anything and also everything that you can’t wait for.
This obscure kanji, which converts as “moth,” is now used together a shorthand for お疲れ様でした, which us talked about earlier. Why 乙? since it’s read as おつ, i m sorry is the very same slang term we covered above that way “you have to be tired” or “thanks because that your tough work.” You’ll watch this as praise for who online. Like once someone write-ups the answer to the clickbait location of an write-up in the comments to save you a click.
Another one based on how it sounds read aloud in Japanese. The number 5 in Japanese is ご (go). So when writing 555, you’re speak “Go, go, go!” It’s used in digital gaming primarily. However it’s not the only number you’ll check out pop increase as web slang! 888 is also used due to the fact that it’s check out はちはちはち (hachi hachi hachi), i beg your pardon is the onomatopoeia sound because that clapping.
こｎ / んｐ / うｐ(kon / np / up)
Those three look prefer typos, don’t they? but they’re not typos at all! They’re abbreviation slang terms. こｎ is brief for こんばんは, or “hello.” The romanized “n” is usually laziness due to the fact that to obtain the ん character, you need to press the crucial an extra time. So they leave it together the romanized “n.”
As because that the other two, んｐ is the very same as English “np” which method “no problem.” and also うp is brief for “upload.”
Japanese Slang Insults
Use this words with care! Although some of these deserve to be used jokingly among friends (guys especially), don’t usage these native all the time unless you want to be viewed as fairly the western loudmouth jerk. (A real stereotype.)ばか (baka): Idiot.ダサい (dasai): Lame, the end of style, dorky, or sucky.お前 (omae): A rude, blunt way to to speak “you.” It’s mostly used by men to other guys as an insult because it literally method “The point in former of me.” So, this person is so lowly they’re simply this thing in her way. It’s periodically used jokingly or lightheartedly though in between friends.われ (ware): The very same os お前, but more common in Kansai-ben.やつ (yatsu): like calling who “guy” or “bloke.” It have the right to be offered casually between friends, however it’s additionally a bit insulting due to the fact that it’s something friend don’t have actually much respect for and also think of as “lower” than you.ぶす (busu): an ugly woman. It’s type of provided like “bitch” in English.悪ガキ (warugaki): Brat.
Japanese make an oath Words
In case you feeling the have to let out a curse under her breath, you have the right to do for this reason in Japanese. Again, usage caution with these. While くそ is quite usual in Japanese, nobody of these words space safe come throw approximately lightly.
This is your most common, flexible curse word in Japanese. It method “shit,” “fuck,” or “dammit,” like how every one of those can be interchangeable in English. It’s usual to hear this one muttered under someone’s breath.
This method “Die!” or “Go come hell!” the one that you’ve most likely heard in Naruto and also other shonen anime and also manga.
Exactly what it sound like: “fuck.” Imported straight right into the language from English.
One that the strongest curse words in Japanese. It’s an insult offered to contact someone an “MF’er” or “shithead.”
“Son the a bitch” in Japanese, although the can additionally be provided as an exclamation the “Dammit!” The literal meaning translation is a “beast” or a “brute.”
Japanese Slang Phrases
Last up, here are some basic slang phrases the you’ll hear and also see online.
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