Is "大した" polite in normal conversation?

I’ll keep this topic quick and simple.

Under what I’ve been taught, “大した” often means “great” or “considerable”.

However, I’m also well aware of the immense similarity this word has to words such as “大きい”, which means “big”, “大きさ”, which means “size”, and “太い”, which means “fat”.

With this in mind, and already knowing just how context-sensitive the Japanese language can be, would " 大した" be an appropriate use of language in a normal conversation? If, say, I wanted to tell someone that they were great, would I use “大した” to compliment them? Or would this likely be misconstrued as an insult regarding their size/weight?

It’s an odd question, but I’d rather ask it now and get an answer rather than embarrass myself in the future. :stuck_out_tongue:

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Would you tell someone they were considerable? It’s a different meaning of great than, “Hey, you’re a great guy!”

I wouldn’t consider any of the words you have listed as having immense similarity; they are related by virtue of them containing the same kanji (except 太い - I’m not sure why you included that), but they are just about as different in meaning as their English counterparts.

The context sentences can be helpful in getting to understand the usage of the different vocab using the same kanji - I’d recommend going back and looking them over.


You wouldn’t use that word to compliment someone. It’s used more in the context of 大したことない - “it’s not anything important/of significance.”


Thank you for the answer, that makes it quite a bit easier to understand.

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Also keep in mind that this word can’t be used as a predicate, only modifying another word.

In other words [something]は大した is ungrammatical. It can’t be used that way.
It’s always in the form of 大した[something], however that would appear in a sentence.



:thinking: #sentence 大した -

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What do you mean by :thinking:? I don’t see any sentence ending with は大した。

I misunderstood what he meant.

[something]は大した。is ungrammatical, but [something]は大した[something]… isn’t.


Yes, In [something]は大した[something], 大した is not a predicate. So it’s okay. Not everyone knows what a predicate is though, I suppose.


Yeah, I don’t know too many grammar terms.

So… first forum post and I don’t really know what I’m doing… but if I’m using 大した[something], do I need to put any particles like の in the middle? Like 大した の [something]?

(Sorry if this is a bad question- I’m super new :stuck_out_tongue: )

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No, 大した directly modifies whatever you attach it to.

So you would use it like 大したもの, 大したこと, 大した数, etc.

Ah I see thank you

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