Introduction to Keigo Part 5: 丁重語


Today, we come to the “brother” of 謙譲語(けんじょうご)、the 丁重語(ていちょうご)。

We use this in a situation when there is no other party that we want to praise. By deprecating ourselves, we also express politeness.

日本語: 自分の動作をへりくだることで丁重な表現をする。高める相手がいない場合に使う。

Let’s also revise the difference between 謙譲語 (humble form) and 丁重語 (courteous form).

Some words in 丁重語 (ていちょうご)
いる ⇒ おる
言う ⇒ 申す
する ⇒ いたす
行く、来る ⇒ 参る
思う、知っている ⇒ 存じる
いる ⇒ おる、の例

If you have a difficult time trying to distinguish between 謙譲語 and 丁重語、you just need to remember that 謙譲語 is the one where your action is done on the other party (e.g 申し上げます (to say to the other party). On the other hand, 丁重語 does not require this (e.g 申します) .

It might be difficult at the start to memorize all of this. But, once you apply it into your life, it’s just a matter of time that you get the hang of it.

As a foreigner, if you can use Keigo properly, i think that Japanese will also start to respect you more.

Have a great day ahead!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: