An ad created for Nihongo Gokan no Jiten 日本語語感の辞典, "Japanese nuance dictionary," showing a salaryman apologizing in several ways, from "bowing," ojigi お辞儀, to dogeza 土下座, "prostration."


  • Context: an ad for Nihongo Gokan no Jiten 日本語語感の辞典, "Japanese nuance dictionary," depicting various apologetic gestures, the last (leftmost) one being the dogeza. The text aren't terms for the gestures, but words related to apology.
  • ayamaru
    To apologize. (title of the ad.)
  • shitsurei
    Excuse me. Pardon. Said when doing something that "lacks respect," literally, hence why you excuse yourself.
  • gomen
    Forgive me. Sorry.
  • sumanai
    Sorry. Literally in the sense of something done that "won't disappear," so it's a regrettable mistake or gratitude that won't be forgotten, but in practice it's used for all sorts of minor stuff.
  • moushi wake nai
    [I] have no excuse. (nai, arimasen, gozaimasen, mean the same thing.)
  • chinsha
    To explain yourself and apologize. Used when not only you're at fault, but you also have some explaining to do, e.g. to explain to a client why things have gone wrong, and apologize to them for things going wrong.
  • shazai
    Apology, in the sense of assuming fault, "crime," "sin," tsumi 罪.

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