Wondering how to know whether a word is used often

As suggested by the title, I was wondering whether is there any way to find out if a word is used often, I remember in one of the post that I have read, they say that you can google the word, and see for the amount of entries of the word to determine whether a word is most used. I think I might be stupid/retarded, but how do you even do that?

I know there is one other way which is to go to jisho.org where they will state whether a word is a common one.

I hope that anyone of you can take the time to enlighten a stupid person like me :sweat_smile:

And if this question has been answered before, my bad and I hope that you can refer me to that post :sweat_smile:


This video I made might be useful to you.

Using this site for this kind of thing.



I might be revealing my own ignorance here, but…

With regards to the Google search thing: I just put in the word, and look at the hits.

As a random (imperfect) example:

走る - to run

On jisho, 迯げる is listed as an outdated kanji for “to escape”/“to run away.”


136 million hits for one, and 65.000 for the other, so one is clearly much more common. ^^


Now, now, if we’d start calling everyone learning new things stupid, we’d just sit around here calling each other names all day! It’s not a sin to be new to something. It’s not a sin to ask questions. It’s Discourse’s sin that the search engine is so bad. :wink:

Be nice to yourself. :purple_heart:

If not for you, do it for shy people lurking on the forums, who might infer that asking questions is considered for stupid people. Never so!


There’s also Yomichan. You can use it to get definitions on the spot (hover over words pressing shift). Having the Innocent Corpus there (a free frequency list that you can use with Yomichan) allows you to see a number that will give you a relative frequency. Higher the number (specially above 10K), the more common the word is. Words int the hundreds are not that common, and below hundred, you can think of them as rare.

Here, it will look something like this:


I’m sorry for nitpicking, but I think a comparison between 迯げる and 逃げる would be more fair, as the meanings are closer/the same.

This of course leads to exactly the same conclusion, I don’t disagree with the method at all.

@op: you’re not stupid


Fair, and why I specifically marked it as an imperfect example. ^^ I was (lazily) trying to show my point in differences of hits, rather than find a legitimate comparison to make in terms of interchangeable words where you want the more frequently used one.


Sorry, completely read over (imperfect)!

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No worries! Always good to point out if you think someone is confusing meanings, or has a wrong idea of nuance.

Kind of off topic but I recall coming across a website where if you type in the Japanese word it would bring up the most frequently used words/particles that come after that word but I can’t for the life of me remember what it’s called. Something like if you type 気 it’s bring up "になる” or “をつけて” etc.

Does anyone have any idea?

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This is what I do as well. I’d only add that I’ve tested it on some common words and the most I ever got is about 100k (I think I maybe even read somewhere that the Yomichan’s dictionary was made by scanning 100k books, but not sure). So I count 1k as 1% of the books contain the word/kanji. 2k hits on Innocent Corpus as 2%, 3.5k as 3.5% etc.


Maybe this is the website you’re looking for?


And then this one, exactly the same as the green one, but with different source for the sentences.


Thank you for the encouragement and the kind words :grinning:, it is just that I feel that I may be asking stupid/oblivious questions that can be easily done, and I guess you are both are right that it is okay for me to ask questions when in doubt. I didn’t meant to discourage people from asking any future questions so I am sorry if I made anyone feel that way :cry:

And thank you all for your reply, and genuinely wanting to help me, so once again, thank you all for helping :grin::grin:


Thanks @Myria and @Ncastaneda this is exactly what I meant!

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I use this strategy from time to time, but you should put the words in quotes when you do this. That forces Google to only return exact matches.


Good tip! ありがとう!

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