朝ごはん: Breakfast vs Morning Meal

#1

I just did the 朝ごはん vocab lesson and have a question.

To me, “breakfast” is a little ambiguous:

  • A meal that is eaten at a specific time, ie. in the morning.

  • A specific type of food that is usually eaten in the morning.

  • The first thing you eat after waking up, regardless of the time of day.

So if I’m on night shift and eat my breakfast at 8pm, would I still use this vocab?

What about if I just fancy a bowl of cereal in the evening? I wouldn’t use it in this context, but I’ve been asked why I’m eating breakfast for dinner more than once…

My actual question is: can I set “morning meal” as a synonym for this without affecting my fluency later on?

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#2

In any language, if you look up a word in a dictionary, you will find definitions or meanings that most people (or at least the authors of that dictionary) have agreed on. That doesn’t mean that every other person will always use that word with those same exact meanings. If I wake up at 8pm and then eat my breakfast, then my Japanese friend passes by and says “朝ごはん?”, it will be clear from the context that he’s not saying 8pm is morning.

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#3

Yes, it can mean all those things. In the same way that in English, when you eat something to break your fast from the previous night, the original word meanings have become so blurred that breakfast is, well, just breakfast.

Unless you’re a monk or actually fasting. Then I guess breaking a fast at 8pm on a holy day is probably still called a breakfast. :wink:

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#4

Thanks both. I marked the second reply because it was a more direct answer, but both helpful. I’ll avoid using the synonym.

Well I do regularly fast just for the hell of it :zipper_mouth_face:

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