Please explain 嫌疑

I’m having a lot of trouble with the word 嫌疑. WaniKani has the definition as “suspicion” and inevitably I write “doubt”. The problem I have is that with one meaning, they are near-synonyms, though the usage is basically the opposite.
“I doubt he is innocent”
“I suspect he is not innocent”

The two sentences above are basically the same. But if you don’t negate the second part, the sentences become opposites.
“I doubt he is innocent”
“I suspect he is innocent”

Any tips to remember the meaning of 嫌疑?

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Have you tried making a thread?

But for real, its stupid but heres how I do it. Just dont laugh ;w;

So I imagine a Kangaroo outside my window. A kangy (けんぎ)(嫌疑). Now why the hell is there a kangy outside my window?! I don’t doubt its there because I can see it with my own eyes, but Im so suspicious right now. What the hell does that kangy want with me. Who put it there. Its wearing a trench coat too. Very suspicious.


Disclaimer: Other than WaniKani, I’ve never encountered 嫌疑, so I don’t know how it’s truly used. My mnemonic is focused on associating “嫌 dislike + 疑 doubt → suspect/suspicion”.

On its own, “doubt” is relatively neutral compared to “suspect”, since the uncertainty can be grounded in yourself (i.e., your own ignorance) rather than any particular fault with the target. However, if you “dislike” someone, then your “doubt” grows into “suspicion”.

How about 嫌疑 =容疑 = suspicion, at least I often hear 容疑者 on TV.

“ぎ at the end is suspicious. I doubt I will get it right.”

In your sample sentences, you use doubt and suspicion to show your misgivings about someone/something. 疑問 is a better fit for use in these situations. According to newspaper articles (and verified with my teacher), 嫌疑 is most often used when someone is suspected of committing a crime, i.e.

This is the man who’s suspected by the police.


Have you considered this:

① 悪事を犯したのではないかという疑い。「―をかけられる」
② ある者が犯罪を行なったのではないかという証拠に裏付けられた疑い。

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Very helpful, thanks.

I did see that definition earlier, which helped a little bit. Of course, then I had to look up 疑い, which included definitions such as 「うたがうこと」(obviously unhelpful) and 「怪しいと思うこと」(somewhat helpful). Unfortunately, the one word J->E definitions for 疑い and 怪しい both include variations of “doubt” and “suspicion” and I when I saw that 怪しい had nine definitions I decided to just ask here. :slight_smile:

Anyway, the key part does seem to have to do with suspicions as they relate to criminal activity (which “doubt” can’t be used for), so thanks @thornarm and @Syphus for getting me to focus on that.

P.S. @acm2010 I sometimes have trouble remembering 容疑 as well, until I think of 容疑者 and then remember them both.

疑う is basically just being suspicious of or doubting someone as in English. Like when I see English in Japan, I am 疑う of it.

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