Do you know the word omedetou? Would you like to know its real meaning? In this article we will learn some interesting information about the famous Japanese word omedetou (おめでとう) which primarily means congratulations.
Let’s also see some curiosities, some synonyms and alternative words that you can use to congratulate someone. The perfect word to say happy birthday, congratulations on your wedding and many other phrases.
Table of Contents - What does omedetou mean? - How to use Congratulations in Japanese - Omedetou synonyms and alternatives - Sentences using omedetou
What does omedetou mean?
The word Omedetou (お目出度う) literally means congratulations on a favorable occasion such as a birthday, wedding or promotion. The word is composed by the adjective medetai (目出度い) which means happy, auspicious, cheerful and propitious.
The word is composed of the ideograms eye [目] leaving [出] and occurrence [度]. This word is usually accompanied by the famous expression gozaimasu (ございます) which makes the expression a little more formal.
Ironically the adjective medetai can also mean naive, innocent, foolish, good-natured. There are Japanese sweets that are also called omedetou (御目出糖) and are made from glutinous rice and azuki beans.
Other strange ways of writing medetai that are no longer used are [芽出度い] and [愛でたい]. Nowadays the word is written more in hiragana when it is an expression of congratulations (omedetou) and sometimes with kanji if used as an adjective.
How to use Congratulations in Japanese
Below we share some example sentences that can help you understand the use of the word omedetou:
|Happy New Year||明けましておめでとう||Akemashite omedetou|
|Happy Birthday||誕生日おめでとう||tanjoubi omedetou|
|Congratulations on your engagement||ご婚約おめでとうございます||Go kon’yaku omedetōgozaimasu|
|I wish you a Merry Christmas||クリスマスおめでとう||kurisumasu omedetou|
|Congratulations for the victory||優勝おめでとう。||Yūshō omedetō|
|Happy Halloween||ハローウィンおめでとう。||Harōu~in omedetō.|
OMEDETOU Synonyms and ALTERNATIVES
Before I start I want to briefly quote the verb moushiageru (申し上げる) which means to express, declare or extend and is usually used after a few words that we will study below.
|And everyone lived happily ever after||目出度し目出度し||medetashimedetashi|
|Congratulations, celebration, festival||お祝い(申し上げる)||oiwai (moushiageru)|
|Congratulations (Kansai dialect)||おめでとうさん||omedetousan|
|Expressing pleasure, happiness||お喜び(申し上げる)||oyorokobi (moushiageru)|
|Congratulations, best wishes, long life||寿||kotobuki|
Sentences using omedetou
Below we will see some sentences teaching how to say happy birthday, happy new year and other similar sentences in Japanese.
お誕生日おめでとうございます。 O-tanjoubi omedetou gozaimasu. Happy Birthday (formal)
ご結婚おめでとうございます。 Go-kekkon omedetou gozaimasu. (formal) Congratulations for the wedding!
優勝おめでとう。 Yuushou omedetou. Congratulations for the victory!
明けましておめでとう。 Akemashite omedetou Happy New Year!
彼らは先輩に昇進おめでとうと言った。 Karera wa senpai ni shoushin omedetou to itta They said congratulations to the veterans for the promotion.
感謝祭おめでとう。 kanshasai omedetou Congratulations on Thanksgiving Day
ハローウィンおめでとう。 Harōu~in omedetou Happy Halloween
バレンタインデーおめでとう。 Barentaindē omedetō Congratulations on Valentine's Day