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Lesson Transcript


Naomi: なおみです。
Chris: Chris here. Using Humble Language in Elegant Japanese Surroundings. このレッスンで勉強することは何ですか?
Naomi: 敬語です。特に謙譲語 です。
Chris: In this lesson, you'll learn how to be extra formal as we review kenjō-go or humble language.
Naomi: 今回は旅館での会話です。桃屋先生と旅館の係員が話しています。
Chris: This conversation takes place at a ryokan, or Japanese style inn, where Mr. Momoya and a room steward are talking.
Naomi: 二人とも丁寧に話していますね。
Chris: They're speaking formally.
Naomi: では、聞いてみましょう。
Chris: Let's listen to the conversation.

Lesson conversation

A: 桃屋様、客室係の梨本と申します。
B: あ、はい。お願いします。
A: お荷物お持ちいたします。
B: あ、すみません。
A: では、館内の説明をいたします。
A: 桃屋様のお部屋はこちらでございます。
B: うわー、いい部屋ですね。
A: 浴衣とタオルはこちらに入っております。
B: はい。
A: では、7時ごろに夕食をお部屋にお運びします。
B: 今からお風呂に行くので、その間に布団を敷いてもらえますか。
A: かしこまりました。では、失礼いたします。
Naomi: 今度は英語の訳と一緒に聞いてみましょう。
係員: 桃屋様、客室係の梨本と申します。
Jessi: Mr. Momoya, my name is Nashimoto, the room steward.
: お部屋までご案内いたします。
Jessi: I will show you to your room.
桃屋: あ、はい。お願いします。
Jessi: Uh, yes. Please.
係員: お荷物お持ちいたします。
Jessi: I will carry your luggage.
桃屋: あ、すみません。
Jessi: Oh, thanks.
係員: では、館内の説明をいたします。
Jessi: Now, I will explain the layout of the hotel.
: こちらは非常口でございます。
Jessi: This is the emergency exit.
: お風呂は全て1階にございます。
Jessi: All of the baths are on the first floor.
: ご利用時間は朝4時から、夜12時まででございます。
Jessi: The bath hours are from four o'clock in the morning until twelve o'clock at night.
係員: 桃屋様のお部屋はこちらでございます。
Jessi: Mr. and Mrs. Momoya, your room is here.
桃屋: うわー、いい部屋ですね。
Jessi: Wow, it's a nice room, isn't it!
係員: 浴衣とタオルはこちらに入っております。
Jessi: Yukatas and towels are all in here.
: ではお茶をお入れいたしますね。
Jessi: Now I'll put on some tea.
: 本日、ご夕食は7時でいかがでしょうか。
Jessi: Would dinner tonight at seven be acceptable?
桃屋: はい。
Jessi: Yes.
係員: では、7時ごろに夕食をお部屋にお運びします。
Jessi: Very well. I will bring dinner to your room at around seven.
桃屋: 今からお風呂に行くので、その間に布団を敷いてもらえますか。
Jessi: We're going to the baths now, so could I ask you to lay out the futons while we're there?
係員: かしこまりました。では、失礼いたします。
Jessi: Of course. Please excuse me.
Naomi: クリスさんは今日本に住んでいらっしゃいますけど、布団に寝ていますか、それともベッドに寝てますか。
Chris: 布団に寝ていますね。はい。結構前から。
Naomi: そうですか。腰とか痛くならないですか。
Chris: ううん、あまりならないですね。ていうか、すごく寝心地がいいですね。
Naomi: そうなんですか。じゃあ、毎日布団をたたんで片付けたりとか?
Chris: そうですね、たまに敷きっぱなしで。
Chris: So I was just explaining to Naomi-sensei that I sleep on a futon actually here in Japan, and she asked if I take care of it and put it up in the closet every day, unfortunately I can't say that's totally the truth… case. But I find it very comfortable.
Naomi: なるほどね。私、アメリカに居たときに、「フトンベット」っていう言葉をきいたことがあるんですが、アメリカのフトンベットって日本の布団と一緒なんですか?
Chris: I think futon-style beds in the US and Europe are different from real Japanese futon. Futon-style beds have a thin Japanese-futon-style mattress on top of a low wooden frame, whereas of course a Japanese futon has no wooden frame at all - it's just the thin mattress by itself.
Naomi: じゃ、違うものなんですね。
Chris: そうですね。
Naomi: クリスさんは旅館には泊まったことがありますか?
Chris: ありますね、何度も。
Naomi: おすすめの温泉地とかありますか。
Chris: ありますね。
Naomi: どこでしょ?
Chris: 九州にあるとても有名なんですけど、別府っていうところ。
Naomi: 私も行ったことあります。
Chris: そうですか。
Naomi: いいですよね。
Chris: いいですね。
Chris: So if you want to find a great onsen resort town in Japan, I really recommend Beppu in Kyushu, it’s quite famous and I think you'll love it.
Naomi: て、ここでちょっと旅館についての注意何ですけど、旅館には浴衣っていうのがありますよね。その浴衣は部屋に置いてあって、お風呂に入った後に着るんですけど、気をつけなくちゃいけないのは浴衣を着る時に自分から見て左側を上にしてきなくちゃいけないです。
Chris: 右を上にするとbad luck とかですよね?
Naomi: そうですね。死んだ人が着物をそういうふうに着るんですね。
Chris: なるほど 。
Chris: So Naomi and I were talking about ryokan, or Japanese inns. Naomi said at a ryokan, people usually change into a yukata, or a cotton bathrobe, which is found in the room closet, after they take a bath. But one thing you have to be careful about is putting the left 'flap' of the yukata on top when you wear it. The other way around, with the right 'flap' uppermost, is the way Japanese people dress the dead at a funeral.
Naomi: 気をつけてください。
Naomi: じゃ、単語に入りましょ。
Chris: Let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
The first word we shall see is:
Naomi: 本日 [natural native speed]
Chris: today
Naomi: 本日 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Naomi: 本日 [natural native speed]
: Next:
Naomi: 布団 [natural native speed]
Chris: futon, Japanese-style bedding
Naomi: 布団 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Naomi: 布団 [natural native speed]
: Next:
Naomi: 非常口 [natural native speed]
Chris: emergency exit
Naomi: 非常口 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Naomi: 非常口 [natural native speed]
: Next:
Naomi: 案内 [natural native speed]
Chris: information, guidance
Naomi: 案内 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Naomi: 案内 [natural native speed]
: Next:
Naomi: 利用 [natural native speed]
Chris: use, utilization
Naomi: 利用 [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Naomi: 利用 [natural native speed]
Chris: Let's have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Naomi: The first word/phrase we’ll look at is....
Chris: The first word is?
Naomi: 非常口
Chris: emergency exit. Hijō means emergency, and 'guchi' in this case means "exit".
Naomi: このグチは「入口」「出口」の「グチ」と同じです。
Chris: Right. This GUCHI is the same GUCHI in 'iriguchi', "entrance", and 'deguchi', "exit".
Naomi: 非常は emergency と言う意味ですが、[ひじょ] じゃなくて、[ひじょー] 長く伸ばしてくださいね。
Chris: So you have to prolong the O sound.
Naomi: そうです。ひじょー。この非常 は新しい言葉ですね。じゃ、非常を使った単語の意味がわかりますか?
Chris: Can you guess the meaning of these words containing hijō?
Naomi: 非常ベル 
Chris: 非常, emergency and ベル, bell? So is this "emergency bell", or maybe in more natural English "emergency buzzer".
Naomi: そうです。じゃ、これはどうですか? 非常階段
Chris: 非常,emergency; 階段, stairs… so it's a "fire-escape staircase".
Naomi: じゃ、最後です。非常食
Chris: 非常emergency 食... isn't this shoku from shokuji "meal"?
Naomi: はい。
Chris: So it's "emergency food" or "emergency rations", then.
Naomi: そうです。よくできました。(笑)
Chris: 次の単語は何ですか? What's the next word?
Naomi: 本日
Chris: Today.
Naomi: 本日は今日と同じ意味です。でも、今日よりformal です。
Chris: Honjistu is more formal than kyou meaning "today." 次の単語は?And the next word is?
Naomi: 利用
Chris: use, utilization
Naomi: これは「使うこと」と言う意味です。
Chris: Riyou suru is a verb and it means the same as "tsukau", "to use".
Oh, no. Naomi-sensei... since you introduced riyou, one question came into my mind.
Naomi: なんですか?
Chris: It's a bit of an advanced question maybe, but what's the difference between 利用 and 使用...?
Naomi: うわ・・・。そんな難しい質問を。嫌われますよ。わたしに。
Chris: You're gonna hate me for asking such a difficult question?! (笑)
Naomi: うそです。(笑)難しい質問ですね・・・。大体同じなんですけど・・・うーん・・・。利用はサービスとか施設facilityに使われることが多いです。使用は物が多いと思いますね。どちらでも時も多いです。
Chris: Both "riyou" and "shiyou" means "use, utilization" and they're used interchangeably. However according to Naomi-sensei, riyou is used for services or facilities, whereas shiyou is mainly used for physical items.
Naomi: もちろん, 例外"exception"はたくさんあります。

Lesson focus

Chris: In this lesson, you'll learn how to be extra formal using kenjō-go, or humble language.
Naomi: このレッスンでは謙譲語(humble language)を復習しましょう。
Chris: Remember that the basic function of kenjō-go is to lower the status of the subject and conversely elevate the listening party, so we usually use it to describe our own actions.
Naomi: まず「いたす」の使い方を復習しましょう。
Chris: First of all, let's review the usage of itasu. Itasu is the humble form of "suru", to do. It's usually used in its -masu form in a formal conversation. For example
Naomi: 「失礼します」
Chris: "Excuse me" becomes...
Naomi: 「失礼いたします」
Chris: And
Naomi: 「よろしくお願いします」
Chris: becomes
Naomi: よろしくお願いいたします。
Chris: in an extra formal situation.
Now, listeners, it's your turn. Naomi-sensei is going to say a sentence; please rephrase the sentence using humble language.
Naomi: " 明日、電話します。"
Chris: "I'll call you tomorrow." In an extra formal situation this sentence would be said...
Naomi: (pause) 明日、電話いたします。
Chris: Let's do one more. "I'll contact you again." would be...
Naomi: また、連絡します
Chris: In an extra formal situation this sentence would be said...
Naomi: (pause)また、連絡いたします。
Naomi: じゃ、次に、ーing の言い方を復習しましょう。ーingは「ーております」です。
Chris: Next, let's review how to express the present progressive in a humble way.
Do you remember the phrase 「お世話になっています」 "I'm much obliged to you"? This sentence would be said....
Naomi: お世話になっております
Chris: in a more formal situation. Please notice that the last part, imasu, becomes orimasu.
Naomi: じゃ、この文章はどうですか?How about this sentence? Japanesepod101.comで日本語を勉強しています
Chris: "I'm studying Japanese at Japanesepod101.com". This sentence would be...Japanesepod101.comで日本語を勉強しております。
Naomi: そうです。
Chris: It's not .Japanesepod101.comで日本語を勉強いたしております?
Since itasu is a humble form of suru?
Naomi: それは、 二重敬語 "double keigo" or "redundant keigo" なので、間違いですね。
ing は 「ーております」です。
Chris: So you should stick to "-te orimasu"for present progressive. ダイアログの文章お願いします。
Naomi: 「浴衣とタオルはこちらに入っております。」
Chris: "Yukatas and towels are all in here."
Naomi: 「浴衣とタオルはここに入っています」という意味ですね。
Chris: Naomi-sensei, その後に、係りの人は「ご夕食は7時でいかがでしょうか。」" Would dinner tonight at seven be acceptable?" と言っていますね? この「でしょうか」は「ですか」と同じ意味ですね?
Naomi: いい質問ですね。「ですか」の代わりに「でしょうか」を使うと、もっとやわらかくなります。丁寧に聞こえますね。
Chris: So if you use "deshō ka?" instead of "desu ka?", it sounds softer and therefore is better for a formal situation.
Naomi: これは何ですか? "What's this?" は「これはなんでしょうか」
Chris: Maybe it's something like "What would this be?" or "I wonder what this is."
Naomi: このレッスンは わかりやすいですか? "Is this lesson easy to understand?" would be?
Chris: このレッスンは わかりやすいでしょうか。"I wonder if this lesson is easy to understand."


Naomi: それでは、このレッスンはここまで。皆さん、Lower Intermediate lesson はいかがでしょうか。分かりやすいでしょうか。ぜひコメントお待ちしています。
Chris: So, listeners, how do you find this lower intermediate lesson? We'll be waiting for your feedback.
Naomi: じゃ、また。
Chris: See you!


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Please to leave a comment.
😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

JapanesePod101.com Verified
November 29th, 2011 at 06:30 PM
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みなさん、using keigo correctly can be difficult even for native speakers of Japanese. If you have any questions or examples you'd like us to check, please let us know below! :)

JapanesePod101.com Verified
June 10th, 2020 at 05:36 PM
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Hi アレン,

Thank you for posting!!

We are sorry for this late reply.

In Japanese society, especially at companies, Keigo is considered really important.

However, we know it's very hard even for us Japanese to use it properly.

So please don't worry too much about using Keigo correctly. Just try to speak politely:)

Let us know if you have any question!



Team JapanesePod101.com

April 13th, 2020 at 01:53 PM
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Hi, Pod, it's Allan from Taiwan and it's my first comment.😄

I was wondering how crucial is it for using Keigo in a Japanese 会社?

If I am a foreign employees speaking Japanese, does it mean my 上司 somehow would be more tolerant if my Keigo was not used properly?



JapanesePod101.com Verified
July 14th, 2019 at 07:02 AM
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Hi Will,

Thanks for studying with us!

I'm glad you are learning keigo. It useful to learn it, especially if you are tying to use Japanese for business.


Miki H

Team JapanesePod101.com

June 29th, 2019 at 06:41 AM
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Great lesson! I never use keigo 😅 but it's good to know for comprehension.

JapanesePod101.com Verified
December 18th, 2018 at 01:12 AM
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Hi luke,

Thanks for the question. I've noticed that the Lesson Notes is incomplete as it does not contain certain conversation. Thank you for bringing this mistake to our attention. Our staff will fix it as soon as possible.

By the way, Chris's answer in Japanese goes like this:



Miki H

Team JapanesePod101.com

December 15th, 2018 at 04:19 AM
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Chris: (Answer in Japanese) yes but could we know what he says?

JapanesePod101.com Verified
December 12th, 2018 at 03:40 PM
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Hi Allison,

Thank you for posting!

They are such good questions!!

The answer for the first question;「召し上がっていらっしゃる」is grammatically fine.

Yes, it looks like a double honorific form, but it is actually correct.

However, it sounds a bit too much, we often just say


The second question; the honorific verb for「聞く」is 「お聞きになります」or「聞かれます」.

As you know, some verbs have only their special humble verbs but not special honorific verbs (or vice versa.)

Hope this helps you.

Keep up the good work!!



Team JapanesePod101.com

October 6th, 2018 at 06:50 AM
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So I have a few questions. The first one is in one of the lessons it said you can't use double keigo form, so how would you use the ている form with irregular honorific and humble form? For example would 召し上げっている or 召し上げっていらっしゃる be okay to use or would you just you 召し上げます。 And last question I know 伺う is irregular humble form for 聞く what about honorific form is it お聞くになる? 

Thank you for your help (this podcast is really helpful so I enjoy it a lot)

JapanesePod101.com Verified
September 18th, 2018 at 11:14 AM
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Team JapanesePod101.com

JapanesePod101.com Verified
September 18th, 2018 at 11:02 AM
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Hi Kayla,

Thank you for the comment!

A translation for "Even though I was an adult..." depends on a situation, but I think it could be translated as "私は大人であったにもかかわらず(watashi wa otona de atta ni mo kakawarazu" or "私は大人でしたが(watashi wa otona deshita ga".

Please note that "でした(deshita)" and ”であった(de atta)" are politer than "だった(datta)", a past form of "da", these two are polite expressions rather than humble expressions though.

When you guess something, you can say "~(と)拝察いたします(~(to) haisatsu itashimasu". "拝察する(haisatsu suru)" is a humble verb for "conjecture".

As for "hearsay", you can say "~(と)お伺いしました(~(to) o-ukagai shimashita)" that means "I have heard ~". "伺う(ukagau)" is a humble verb for "visit" or "hear", so "~(に/へ)お伺いしました" means "I (have) visited ~".

And when you want to express your thought in a humble way, you can say "~(と)存じます(~(to) zonjimasu)".

Keep studying with JapanesePod101.com



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