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時 And 時間

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時 And 時間

Postby SaigoNoBan » Thu 12.15.2005 7:21 am

Sorry for bothering. I was just wondering what the difference between 時(とき) and 時間 (じかん) is.

Thanks well in advance,

どうも 失礼しました。ありがとう。
Last edited by SaigoNoBan on Thu 12.15.2005 9:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: 時 And 時間

Postby tgmerritt » Thu 12.15.2005 10:05 am

Max -

時間 is used only to mean "o'clock" or quantify time (3 hours as a sum and 3 o'clock on the dial) while 時 is used for "o'clock" and ideas like "occasion," "period," "moment," etc.


8時に寝る is "I will sleep from 8" while 8時間寝る is "I will sleep 8 hours"

But 時間 can be used as あの時間は外に居た or At that time I was outside. Here it's a period of time during which you were outside.

However - 学生の時に髪を染めました employs 時 as "when" as in "when I was a student, I dyed my hair."

It could also be translated as "During the period I was a student, I dyed my hair" but this is not only needlessly complicated but also uses "period" to talk about a time in the past that cannot be expressed in a meaningful amount of hours.

Now there are some very unfortunate words when 時間 becomes "o'clock" and it's miserable all around for memorization purposes. Examples are 就寝時間 (bedtime) and 現地時間 (local time). Think of these two as the mastercard logo with a little overlap in meaning, but mostly seperate.

Easy Peazy Summaryz:

時間 is amount of time
時 is everything else to do with time :o
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RE: 時 And 時間

Postby Harisenbon » Fri 12.16.2005 8:34 am

I agree with Tgmerrit's explanation to a degree, but I think that there's a simpler way to describe the difference.

時間 is used as a substitute for the word "time" or when gauging an amount of time. I don't think it can be used as "o'clock."
時 is used for "o'clock" or "when"

寝る時間 -- time to sleep
食べた時 -- when I ate
ご飯の時間 -- Lunch Time
5時間寝た -- I slept for 5 hours
寝たとき -- when I was asleep
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RE: 時 And 時間

Postby SaigoNoBan » Fri 12.16.2005 9:21 am

Hi Tgmerritt & Harisenbon! Thanks a bunch for the explanations, I think I more or less got it. I guess I'll make up some more sample phrases until it comes natural to distinguish the two. As for the exceptions, I'll learn them by heart, 問題 ない!

Thank you very much, have a nice day!:)
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