- Okagesama de meaning from its components
- Kage, a metaphor for work, help and effort
- Okagesama de for sarcastic expressions
- Summary: components of okagesama de
Okagesama de meaning from its components“Okagesama de” has a kanji mixed expression. “お陰様で” is it. When we meet new kanji expressions, their breakdowns will help us a lot to understand them. So, let me check a breakdown of “okagesama de”. From the grammatical point of view, it can be broken down into four parts, “o kage sama de”. Below are explanations of each component.
- o – お : a prefix widely used to make polite expressions. Depending on words used together, another prefix, “go”, needs to be used instead. Learn more about them through a word, omotenashi.
- kage – 陰 (かげ) : a noun meaning ‘a shadow/shadows’ or ‘a shade/shade’. Learn more about Japanese singular and plural. Another kanji expression, “影”, is also possible, but “陰” is more widely used for “okagesama de”.
- sama – 様 (さま) : a suffix widely used to make honorific expressions. Actually, it is considered as an honorific title in Japanese, which is put after family names.
- de – で : a case particle used to express means, method or way taken to reach certain conditions or results. This particle can also be used to indicate a place where something happens.
Kage, a metaphor for work, help and effort“Kage” means a shadow or shadows. It can also mean a dark side of things. In this regard, “kage” is quite similar to the English word, “shadows”. Additionally, in Japanese, it can also be used as a metaphor for work, help and effort of someone. The more work, help and effort are provided, the bigger shadows are casted on ground. So, in a way, polite and honorific expressions of “kage” can be understood as a respect or gratitude to work, help and effort done by someone.
Polite expression of kageWe can make a polite form of “kage” by just adding the prefix, “o”. Actually, Japanese people often use “okage” in daily conversation in order to show their respect or gratitude to others. Below is an example.
Example of okage
- minasan – 皆さん (みなさん) : a noun which is a polite form of “min’na” meaning ‘everyone’, ‘everybody’, ‘you all’ or such.
- no – の : a case particle used to make the possessive case. In the example, it is used to make the possessive case of “minasan”.
- okage – お陰 (おかげ) : a polite form of the noun, “kage”, which is a metaphor for work, help and effort done by someone. In the example, “someone” is “minasan”, namely, “you all”.
- de – で : a case particle used to express means, method or way taken to reach certain conditions or results. In the example, work, help and effort provided by “you all” can be considered as means which enable “I” to do well.
- genki – 元気 (げんき) : a noun meaning ‘vitality’, ‘health’, ‘energy’ and so forth. It can also be used like an adjective meaning ‘healthy’ or ‘fine’. Learn more about adjective like use of Japanese nouns.
- de – で : a conjugation of an auxiliary verb, “da”. It is used to help the noun, “genki”, to behave like an adjective meaning ‘fine’ or ‘well’. It’s not a case particle. Please be careful.
- yatte – やって : a te form of a verb, “yaru”, which is widely used to mean ‘to do’ or ‘to work’.
- masu – ます : an auxiliary verb used to change verbs to their polite expressions. Most probably, it is well known for a part of Japanese masu form.
Honorific expression of okageWe can make an honorific form of “okage” by adding the honorific suffix, “sama”, at its end. Below is an example.
Example of okagesama
- okagesama – お陰様 (おかげさま) : a honorific form of “okage”. So, we can consider it as a very polite form of “kage”.
Normally, no possessive noun is added before “okagesama” since it already contains a nuance of ‘thanks to you’ or ‘because of you’. Adding a possessive noun could make the whole phrase sound weird.
So far, I’ve explained “okage” and “okagesama” through examples. In the next paragraphs, I will explain “okagesama” again through a conversation between two Japanese, Haru and Aki.
Example conversation using okagesama
- desu – です : an auxiliary verb put after a noun or adjective to make its polite form. Probably, it is well known for a part of desu form.
By the way, sometimes, being too polite can be rude. This rule is also valid for “okagesama de”. So, we need to be careful with its use.
Okagesama de for sarcastic expressionsJapanese people love sarcasm. Yet, in Japanese, some sarcastic expressions are so polite that listeners cannot understand the real intention behind. In my opinion, people in Kyoto are really good at this kind of sarcasm. Fortunately, however, sarcastic expressions using “okagesama de” are relatively easy to understand. When someone hasn’t done anything or, in other words, no shadow is casted by his/her work, help or effort, “okagesama de” can be used as a sarcasm. Below is an example conversation.
Example of okagesama as a sarcastic expression
If “I” in the example, namely Aki, is not feeling well and that situation is caused by “you”, “okagesama de genki desu” can work as a perfect sarcasm. Aki is saying “Thanks to you, I’m fine”, but in reality, she is not.
Understanding sarcastic expressions highly depends on context and knowledge of language. Therefore, perhaps, it can be difficult for Japanese leaners. However, knowing how Japanese sarcastic expressions work would be helpful to avoid possible confusion or misunderstanding. At least, it would be helpful to improve their Japanese skills.
Summary: components of okagesama deSo far, I’ve explained components of “okagesama de” through some examples and how Japanese people use them. Let me summarize them as follows.
- kage – 陰 (かげ) : a noun meaning ‘a shadow/shadows’ or ‘a shade/shade’. In Japanese, shadows are considered as a metaphor for work, help and effort of someone.
- okage – お陰 (おかげ) : a polite form of the noun, “kage”. It is widely used to express a respect or gratitude to work, help and effort done by someone.
- okagesama – お陰様 (おかげさま) : a honorific form of “okage”. In a way, we can consider it as a very polite form of “kage”. Japanese people often use it together with the case particle, “de”, to mean ‘thanks to you’ or ‘because of you’. Depending on context and situations, it can also be used as a part of sarcastic expressions.
Japanese Particles Master
Masaki Mori is a Japanese particles master. Through teaching Japanese language, he is trying to spread the culture of Japan. His goal is to preserve it as much as possible.