Differences between the verb miru |見る, 観る, 視る, 診る and 看る

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Once I was talking to a Japanese woman on social media and she used a different way of writing the verb “to see”(Miru). This is a typical case of a word that can be written with a different kanji, but that is the same pronunciation and basically the same verb. Only there are differences and forms of use that we will address in this article.

The verb miru (見る) can mean seeing, looking, watching, observing, evaluating, playing, examining and many other related things. It is a very common word that uses a very simple kanji and is often used even to express things like "look and feel", in addition to expressing ideas, opinions and views.

The homophonic verbs of miru (観る and 視る) have practically the same meaning, but are used on certain occasions that we will highlight now. The first thing to note is that both kanji of these homophones from miru have 見 as a stem on the right side, which can mean the same pronunciation and meaning.

Diferenças entre o verbo miru | 見る, 観る, 視る, 診る e 看る

The verb miru 観る

While the traditional verb miru (見る) can be used at any time and at any time in general. The verb miru (観る) is often used to specify something like:

  • Look at a scenery or landscape, like a tourist;
  • Watch some entertainment like TV or Theater;
  • See a painting or vase;

So basically (観る) is used when you're looking at something. Already (見る) is more specific to the physical act of seeing, but the tendency is to use it in both situations. We can conclude in a simple way that one is to watch and the other is to see, but we cannot consider them as absolute words.観る can also be related to meditation and divination in certain cases.Diferenças entre o verbo miru | 見る, 観る, 視る, 診る e 看る

The other verbs miru 視る, 診る and 看る

The other verbs that are also pronounced miru and meanings of seeing and looking are even more specific. We will list them below and their meanings and forms of use:

  • 視る - Used to inspect, monitor, supervise or contemplate;
  • 診る - Examine (clinically), a doctor who examines a patient (Kanji also means to diagnose and check);
  • 看る - Caring (often medically) nurse observing a patient (Kanji means to watch, to see);

Notice that the last 2 verbs miru they do not have the stem 見, but the meaning of their kanji involves seeing what gave the reading to the verb. The verbs 覧る・覗る・監る are also pronounced miru but they are not usually used anymore. For this reason, we recommend avoiding its uses and focus only on 見る. Remembering that these ideograms are still used in other verbs such as 覗く.

There are cases similar to other Japanese verbs as in the case of the verb “listen”(聞く, 聴く and 訊く). The best thing to do is use the jisho.org and research the meaning and use of each of the verbs and ideograms that make up the verb. I hope you enjoyed the article, we appreciate the shares. We recommend to also see: