お~になる - Grammar Discussion

to do (honorific)

Structure

  • + Verb[stem] + になる

:warning: Remember not to use honorific language when speaking about yourself and your actions!

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Does this honor the subject of the verb or the person being spoken to? I would assume the subject, but I don’t know for sure.

For example, is “先生はお帰かえりになりました” giving honor to the teacher or the person you’re telling this information to?

How about in “先生はお見えになりますか?”? Here the listener is the one doing the seeing. Is the honor being given to the teacher being seen? Or the listener doing the seeing?

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@golmschenk
Hey and sorry for the slow answer :bowing_man:

This is a very good question, basically, おーになる is used when you talk about the actions of someone you want to exalt.
So it doesn’t necessarily have to exalt the interlocutor (the person you are talking with).

For example, if you are talking with a friend about the professor, you can simply say:
先生はお見えになった?
and it is casual towards your friend, but honorific towards the professor.

But when you talk about the same professor to your senpai or someone to whom you want to be polite then you simply use the polite form:
先生はお見えになりましたか?

Also when talking to the person you want to exalt herself:
お帰リになリますか。

I hope that it makes it a bit more clear,
Cheers!

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Hey,

I am not quite sure why this is wrong: 父上はもう[おかえりになりました]んですね。[帰かえる]
I checked the other examples and they mix up long and short forms of なる, but this one asks for [おかえりになった] specifically, is there a reason why?

Thanks for the help!

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@garlicdog
Hey and welcome on the community forums :partying_face:

It is because of the politeness is usually marked only at the end of the sentence (with some exceptions like before が (but/and), けれども(but), and in some cases から、ので, etc).

So if it is んですね already at the end of the sentence, therefore you don’t have to write polite 御帰りになります, the おかえりになる is enough.

I hope it helps,
Cheers!

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