View topic - The nins
Mike Cash wrote:
Easy, you never use 目 to count people. You do sometimes use 名, though.
The 名 style is a bit more stiff/formal. You'll encounter it at restaurants (お客様は何名様ですか？）.
To fudge just a bit:
Sometimes you do use 目 when counting people.....but you can also use it for counting anything else. 目 is an "ordinal suffix" (difference between 1, 2, 3 and 1st, 2nd, 3rd).
So 三人 is "three people" while 三人目 is "the third person".
Yup. I was actually wondering because I heard the 名 thing the other night when I went to a Japanese restaurant and it reminded me that I never was sure about this. It makes a lot more sense now, and I had completely forgotten about ordinal numbers.
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