First manga attempt (夏子の酒), would love a little translation help!

In case the expansion of the contractions doesn’t help enough, here’s the meaning:

Do you not come home unless your family falls ill?

I don’t know the manga; this could be a literal reference to why she’s come back to her hometown, or just a “you don’t come back just because you want to see us, only if you really have to” hypothetical/hyperbole.


That’s totally it! The setup for the Manga is that her brother falls ill so she comes home. Super helpful, thanks y’all.

This is amazing. Thanks for your help and for this link, I’ll be sure to keep this handy. I never would’ve gotten こん came from 来ない on my own…


Some other resources you might find helpful if you haven’t yet discovered:

  • Jisho online Japanese-English dictionary.
  • is a tool for parsing out sentences. You can type/paste in a whole sentence and it will try and break the sentence down into its individual parts. As Japanese doesn’t use spaces between words this can be really helpful when you are first starting out. It’s also useful when you don’t recognise the conjugation of a word, or when a group of words form a set expression.
  • Deepl will translate a sentence from Japanese to English. It’s obviously not going to be right all the time, but it’s pretty good. If you’ve figured out all the parts of the sentence but struggling to bring them together as a whole, it can often point you in the right direction.
  • Jaded network this site is a resource for looking up onomatopoeia. It can be really helpful for all the little sound effects that come up in manga. You won’t want to look them all up but sometimes they help with understanding a panel.

To this I would add that since DeepL prioritizes naturally sounding sentences over accuracy, you can try English → Japanese to get a good sounding Japanese sentence :slight_smile: .


These resources are all great, thank you for sharing. It definitely nudges me in the right direction but sometimes I still don’t quite get the reason why or there’s some specific thing I don’t understand.

For example Natsuko is waiting in the doorway of her father’s room and she says to him…


I’m good on this one until the end. My take is something like “Until I’ve become an adult, <??? Some verb> this threshold”. I would guess at a translation like like “I will not cross this threshold until I become an adult”, which is close to what deepl says given that it doesn’t “know” the subject:

It translates it as “Don’t cross my threshold until you’re on your own.”

… but parses the なって at the end as the て-form of なる, but it seems like deepl maybe thinks it’s a negative of またぐ?

Any ideas on what またぐなって means at the end of this sentence? The other thing I’m struggling to get used to is the “unspoken” content that seems fairly common to leave out of a Japanese sentence. Could this be one of those cases?

Thanks as always!

一人前になる is a set phrase meaning “to become an adult”, like you said.
うち can only refer to you or yours as far as I know, so the threshold is the speaker’s.
またぐ means “to step over”
Now I’m not 100% certain, but I believe the ending って may be the quoting って, which would translate to something like “I told you”, without knowing the context.
Which makes またぐな the negative imperative, “don’t cross”.
So putting it all together, “I told you not to cross my threshold until you’re of age!” Does that fit?
Or it might be “you told me not to cross your threshold until I’m of age” with うち being okay here to mean “your” as it’s being quoted with って? Context would tell us.


うち = 家 :slight_smile:


RIght, maybe. In which case, it can be anyone’s 家, not just the speaker’s, right? Although I thought it was a little childish to say うち instead of いえ? So many nuances I’m unsure of. :sweat_smile:


Ah OK, I was reading うち as “inside” but I think “house” makes more sense. I just went on a journey re-reading about sentences ending in って and it could be that she’s saying her father said all of this in the past because his response is:


Which might be something like a doubtful question (because of “のか”) with something understood left off at the end? “I wonder if you’ve become an adult…” or something?

Colloquial Japanese is tough! Any general tips on how to approach the transition from “formal” Japanese (Genki, NHK Easy) to something like this would be very much appreciated :]

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This is sort of an inverted sentence, a common pattern in speech. He starts by asking なったのか, then fills in what he omitted before: 一人前に. The proper, complete sentence would have been 一人前になったのか. “So, have you become an adult?” or, to better mimic his style of speaking, “So, have you? Become an adult?”

Colloquial Japanese is tough for me too. I can’t offer any concrete tips other that repeated exposure and practice. It does get easier with time! :slight_smile:


Sorry to resurrect an old thread but I thought rather than create a new one I’d hijack this one as I’m in the exact same boat as vthomas2007, reading this as my first manga having been charmed by it in Japanese the Manga Way!
I’ve been going fairly well but I’ve got rather confused about one sentence and I was hoping for some insight:
Natsuko and the head brewer (the old man) are sitting together and he says to her:


Referring to the “fake sake” you get in Tokyo. It seems to be something along the lines of “don’t drink that sort of thing”, but I don’t understand what こた means here, whether it’s a verb conjugation, i.e. のむこた, or whether it’s its own word, and I definitely don’t get what that little ァ is doing there…

If anyone can shed any light on this I’d really appreciate it

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I think it’s そんなもの、飲むことねえ in dialectal speech

The small ァ just shows that it’s an extension of the previous sound, without actually being a part of the word

Oh! After pm215 commented, I realized the こたァ might be こと + は elided together. You see は elided to the previous sound a lot, but I’m used to seeing it turn into ゃ, like それは into そりゃ

Which would make it more along the lines of “That sort of thing isn’t something that you drink,” but your translation is perfectly fine. (For some reason, I was thinking the ねえ was ね but drawn out, and the feeling was more like “So people really drink that stuff, huh,” but yeah, that probably wouldn’t really fit the context and it’s a colloquial pronunciation of ない.)


I’d say 飲むことはない , but same difference.


Ah amazing, that makes so much more sense! I wonder if it’s been elided differently to show that it’s because he’s a bit drunk rather than just his accent? I’m finding the colloquialisms and accents etc in this book really fascinating but my goodness they do make it more confusing at times.

I don’t suppose anyone knows of any good resources to learn more about these types of “non-standard” speech? I guess my main issue is that when coming across something like こたァ being used instead of ことは the dictionaries and textbooks I use become useless!

It’s not a common speech pattern. I don’t know the manga, but I’d bet the characters are drunk when speaking. So it’s actually slurred. This is just something you can pick up if you read enough and come across scenarios like this. You can probably pick up on these clues in your native tongue, this is the same situation.

Yeah that makes sense - and yes he has been drinking, as well as speaking in a country accent anyway. Just got to keep reading and practicing :slight_smile: