Language Lesson

Uki Uki NihonGO + Culture! - Lesson 21 - Filler Words

Welcome to Uki Uki NihonGO! + Culture

We got a lot of interesting responses on our previous video on this topic, so let’s talk about it today! "tsunagi kotoba" are in-between words people commonly use in their speech. Often, these fillers help connect your thoughts.

But they are also helpful in making your speech sound more natural and authentic – a great skill for those of you learning Japanese. So let’s go right ahead and look at some of the most commonly used "tsunagi kotoba".

"ano~" is one of the most common fillers. For example,
Ano~, sumimasen. Kono isu?iidesuka? (Um, excuse me. May I take this chair?)
A, hai. Douzo. (Oh, yes. Go ahead.)

In this next example, you can see another extremely common filler, which is "eeto". It’s often used when you’re thinking while talking. For instance,

Ano~, raishuu no doyoubi, ranchi demo dou desuka?(Um, how about lunch or something next Saturday?)
E? Ano~, doyoubi desuka?(Oh, well, Saturday?) Eeto...(let’s see...) , aa, sumimasen. Doyoubi ha chotto...(Oh, I'm sorry. I'm kind of busy on Saturday.)

As some of you may have noticed in our previous video, "hai" is another filler in Japanese. You can use this when you’re thinking just like the other fillers, but this can also signal the end of a thought as you’re explaining something. For example,

Ma, souiyu wake nan desu. Hai.(...And so, that’s what happened. Yeah.)
You now learned three filler words: eeto, ano~, and hai.

The next time you are going to have a conversation with someone in Japanese, try using them in your speech.

Minasan mo, zehi tsukatte mite kudasai ne.
Dewa, mata.

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