How to use 程= ほど= hodo

October 10, 2012 in Grammar

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= Kare no koto wasureyou to sureba suruhodo, omoidashichau.

= The more I try to forget about him, the more I remember him….



Hi everyone!

This lesson is for my Facebook student, Yui and also for many people who “tweeted” me in past to ask how to use

:rrrr: = ほど= hodo.

It is going to be a long lesson. But hope you all learn more than just a word, ほど(=hodo). Ready? !JYANE!

!to right!= ほど(= hodo)  = degree, extent, approximately ~

(I will write this word  in hiragana except at the last part of this lesson, but you can use either hiragana and kanji.)

!star! When you compare A and B.

:rrrr: A is not as ~ as B

AはBほど〜ない (= A wa B hodo ~ nai.)

:i: It is always used in a negative sentence.

:n: Basic pattern 1)

A is not as (adjective) as B

:rrrr: A はBほど~ない

= A wa B hodo ~  nai.

Ex. A はBほど背が高くない。

= A wa B hodo se ga takaku nai.
= A is not as tall as B

Ex. AはBほどかわいくない。
= A wa B hodo kawaiku nai.
= A is not as cute as B

Ex. AはBほど静かではない。

= A wa B hodo shizuka de wa nai

= A is not as quiet  as B.

Ex. 名古屋は東京ほどごみごみしていない。

= Nagoya wa Toukyou hodo gomigomi shite inai.

= Nagoya is not as crowded as in Tokyo.

Ex. うちの学校はあそこの学校ほど大きく(は*)ない

= Uchi no gakkou wa asokono gakkou hodo ookiku (wa) nai.

= Our school is not as big as that school.

Ex. 今日は昨日ほど寒く(は*)ない。

= Kyou wa kinou hodo samuku (wa) nai.

= It’s not as cold as yesterday today.


= Ano sensei wa Maggie Sensei hodo kibishiku nai.

= That teacher is not as strict as Maggie Sensei.

:n:Basic pattern 2)

:rrrr: A doesn’t do something as much  as B/ A doesn’t do something as (adverb) as B

A はBほど(verb) ない

= A wa B hodo ~  nai.

Ex. A はB ほど勉強しない。

= A wa B hodo benkyou shinai.

= A doesn’t study as much as B.

Ex. AはBほど仕事をしない。

= A wa B hodo shigoto wo shinai.

= A doesn’t work as much as B

Ex. AはBほど飲まない。

= A wa  B hodo nomanai.

= A doesn’t drink as much as B.

Ex. 今日は日曜日ほど人がいない。

= Kyou wa nichiyoubi hodo hito ga inai.

= There aren’t as many people as on Sundays.

Ex. もう昔ほど、無理は(or を)しなくなった。

= Mou mukashi hodo muri wa( or wo)  shinaku natta.

= I don’t work too much as before. / I don’t do crazy things like I used to.

Ex. AはBほど料理がうまくない。

= A wa B hodo ryouri ga umaku nai.

= A doesn’t cook as well as B does.

Ex. AはBほどカラオケが下手ではない。

= A wa B hodo karaoke ga heta dewa nai.

= A doesn’t sing along Karaoke as bad as B does.

Ex. うちの子供は隣の子供ほど行儀がよくない。

= Uchi no kodomo wa tonari no kodomo hodo gyougi ga yokunai.

= Our child doesn’t behave as well as the children next door.

!star!  Not like ~ / Not as ~

We sometimes omit the subject and object when we respond to someone’s quote.

:rrrr: ほどではありません。(polite)ほどではない

= ~ hodo dewa arimasen /~  hodo de wa mao/

= (Subject) is not (adjective) as/like ~ →Not as someone/something  is/does

Ex. Maggie : 「かわいいね!」

= Kawaii ne!

= You are cute!

Student A : 「マギー先生ほどではありません。」(being humble and polite)

= Maggie sensei hodo dewa arimasen.

= (I am) Not as cute as you, Maggie Sensei.

Maggie : 「最近、太ったね。」

= Saikin futottane.

= You’ve been gaining weight.

Student B : 「マギー先生ほどではないけどね。」(being rude. !gejigeji! )

= Maggie Sensei hodo dewa naikedone.

= But I’m not as fat as you are, Maggie Sensei.

!star!  Not as ~ as someone has imagined / thought /  expected,etc.

*思ったほど(=omotta hodo) as ~ as someone thought

*想像していたほど(=souzou shiteita hodo) =as ~ as someone imagined

*期待していたほど(=kitai shite ita hodo) = as~ as  someone expected

~ で(は)なかった(=~ dewa nakatta)/~ではありませんでした。(=dewa arimasen deshita) * more polite

Ex. 試験は、思ったほど難しくなかった。

= Shiken wa omotta hodo muzukashiku nakatta.

= The exam was not as difficult as I had imagined.

Ex. あの映画は期待していたほど面白くなかった。

= Ano eiga wa kitai shiteita hodo omoshiroku nakatta.

= The movie was not as good as I had expected.

Ex. 僕は静香ちゃんが思っているほどモテないから心配しないで。

= Boku wa  Shizuka chan ga omotte iru hodo motenai kara shinpai shinai de.

= I am not as popular among girls as you think so don’t worry, Shizuka.

Ex. その店は評判ほど悪い店ではありませんでした。

= Sono mise wa hyouban hodo warui mise dewa arimasen deshita.

= The restaurant was not as bad as its reviews.


= Kare wa minna ga kangaete iru hodo warui yatsu ja nai.

= He is not as bad a guy as everybody thinks.

Note: じゃない(=janai) is a casual form of ではない(=dewa nai)

!star! to do something like ~ / to be as (like)~ / to be almost ~

It is very similar to   = ぐらい/くらい= gurai/kurai

We sometimes describe things in an extreme way.


= Kotoba ni dekinai hodo utsukushii keshikida.

= The landscape is too beautiful for words.

(The literal meaning of 言葉にできない(= kotobani dekinai) can’t express with words)


= Kono manga wa akiru hodo yonda.

= I read this comic book until I got tired of it.

(The literal meaning of 飽きるほど(=akiru hodo) until I get really tired of !to right!  to do something repeatedly, again and again)


= Kare no koto ga shinuhodo suki desu.

= I love him so much I would die for him. / I love him to death.


= Kinou wa koe ga kareru hodo utatta.

= We sang until we went hoarse.


= Kono senzai wa omoshiroi hodo yogore ga toreru.

= This detergent gets rid of the stains so easily.

(Note : 面白いほど(= omoshiroi hodo) = the direct translation is to be able to do something so easily that you get so excited or feel thrilled)


= Kono CD wo kiku to fushigina hodo yoku nemureru.

= I can sleep very well when I play this CD.


= Kanojo wa puro to machigaerareru hodo no ryouri no ude ga aru.

= She is such a good chef that people mistake her for a professional.

Ex.目は口ほどに物を言い (an old saying)

= Me wa kuchi hodo ni mono wo ii.

= Eyes are as eloquent as the tongue.

= One can say more with a look than with ten thousand words

In Samurai drama, there is a cliché line when someone asks a Samurai who just helps them his name, he says


Ex. 「名乗るほどの者ではござらん」

= Nanoru hodo no mono de wa gozaran.

= I don’t deserve to identify myself (give you my name.) (I am not that great to identify myself.)

Note : ござらん(=gozaran) is an old fashioned way to say ありません(=arimasen)
It is usually follow the quote :


= Sessha touzen no koto wo shitadake de gozaru.

=I just did what I should have done.

Note : ござる(=gozaru) is another typical Samurai expression for です(=desu)

Ex. 彼女の前で昔のニックネームで呼ばれるほど恥ずかしいことはない

= Kanojo no mae de mukashi no nikkuneimu de yobareru hodo hazukashii koto wa nai.

= There is nothing more embarrassing than someone referring to me by the old nickname in front of my girlfriend.

Ex. 目に見えないほど小さいダイヤの指輪を買った。

= Meni mienaihodo chiisai daiya no yubiwa wo katta.

= I bought a very small diamond ring. (It is so small that it’s almost invisible.)

Ex. 父は、両手に抱えきれないほどのお土産を持って帰ってきた

= Chichi wa ryoute ni kakaekirenai hodo no omiyage wo motte kaette kita.

= My father came back home with lots of gifts.

(The literal meaning of 抱えきれない(= kakae kirenai )is can’t hold something in one’s arms.)

Ex. あの子はまだ11才なのに驚くほどの才能を持っている。

= Anoko wa mada juuissai nanoni odoroku hodo no sainou wo motte iru.

= Although the child is only 11 years old, he/she has an amazing talent.


= Ano hito wa haite suteru hodo no okane wo motte iru rashii.

= I heard he/she is loaded.

(The literal meaning of はいて捨てる= haite suteru) is  to sweep money and throw them away.)


= Kokono raamen wa taten to wa kurabemono ni naranai hodo oishii.

= The ramen here is much more delicious than the ramen at other places.

Ex. サイン会をしたら中に入りきれないほどファンが集まった。

= Sainkai wo shitara naka ni hairikirenai hodo fan ga atsumatta.

= When we had an autograph-signing session,  so many fans gathered that some of them couldn’t get inside.

!star!  ~ ほど+adjective +noun = ~  of someone’s caliber. someone as good/great as ~

Ex. 鈴木さんほどの人がどうしてあんな失敗をしたのだろう。

= Suzuki san hodo no hito ga doushite anna shippai wo shitanodarou.

= I wonder  why a person like Mr.Suzuki would make such a mistake.

Ex.  マギーほどのいい女はそうそういない。

= Maggie hodo no ii onna wa sousou inai.

= There aren’t many nice women like Maggie.

Ex. ほどの人がどうしてこんな大学に…

= Kare hodo no hito ga doushite konna daigaku ni…

= I wonder why a (smart/great) person like him would come to this university.

!star! to express approximate numbers = about, approximately

:rrrr: amount/number +ほど(=hodo)

(You can replace this with くらい=kurai/ぐらい=gurai))


= Kokokara kurumade sanjuppun hodo no tokoro ni sunde imasu.

= I live in a place about a 30 minute drive away from here.


= Ato hyakumeitoru hodo massugu susunde kudasai.

= Go straight  about 100 meters more.

Ex. 5分ほど中火で煮て下さい。

= Gofun hodo chuubi de nite kudasai.

= Please cook this about five more minutes on medium heat.


= Ato gomei hodo okurete kimasu.

= About five more people are coming later.

OK, if you are a beginner, you can stop  here. !ochame!

The next section is for intermediate level:



!star! When you emphasize something :

:rrrr: Nothing/Nobody is as ~ as A / Nobody does (can do)  something as A :

A ほどverb or adjectivenoun ++ない(=nai)/いない(=inai)/いません(=imasen) or ありません(=arimasen) * more polite


Ex. マギー先生ほど、生徒のことを大切に思っている先生はいません。

= Maggie Sensei hodo seito no koto wo taisetsu ni omotte iru sensei wa imasen.

= There is no teacher who cares about students as much as Maggie Sensei.

Ex. ほど早く走れる人はいません。

=Kare hodo hayaku hashireru hito wa imasen.

= There is nobody who can run as fast as he can.

Ex. スイスほど美しい国はありません。

= Suisu hodo utsukushii kuni wa arimasen.

= There is no country as beautiful as Switzerland.


= Onigiri hodo sinpuru na tabemono wa nai.

= There is no food as simple as rice balls.

Ex. 今日ほど辛い日はなかった。

= Kyou hodo tsurai hi wa nakatta.

=(There are no days that as bad as today)  Today was the hardest day.

Ex. ほどひどい人はいません。

= Kare hodo hidoi hito wa imasen.

= (There is nobody as bad as he is.) He is the worst person.

Ex. 愛する人を失うことほど辛いことはない。

=Aisuru hito wo ushinau  koto hodo tsurai koto wa nai.

= Nothing is as hard as losing someone you love.

!star! to emphasize :  “this much” “that much”,etc.

:rrrr: これほど(=korehodo) this muchそれほど(=sorehodo) that muchあれほど(=arehodo) that much, to that extent

Which one to use depends on the distance between you and what/whom you refer to.

Ex. あなたががこれほど、馬鹿な人だとは思わなかった。

= Anata ga korehodo bakana hito dato wa omowanakatta.

= I didn’t think you were this stupid.

Ex. それほどお金に困っていたらどうして一言、相談してくれなかったの?

= Sorehodo okane ni komatte itara doushite hitokoto soudan shite kurenakattano?

= If you were that desperate for money, why didn’t you ask me for an advice?


A : 「日本語がお上手ですね。」

= Nihongo wa ojouzu desune.

= Your Japanese is great.

B : 「それほどでもないです。」(being humble)

= Sorehodo demo nai desu.

= Not that great.

Ex. 外はそれほど寒くない

= Soto wa sorehodo samukunai.

= It is not that cold outside.

Ex. あれほどかわいいのにカレがいないんだって。

= Arehodo kawaii noni kare ga inain datte.

= I heard she doesn’t have a boyfriend despite being that cute.

:rrrr: どれほど (=dore hodo) how much, how many, how far

Note : You can replace this with どれだけ(=doredake)

Ex. 昨夜はどれほど飲んだか記憶にない。

= Sakuya  wa dorehodo nondaka kioku ni nai.

= I don’t remember how much I drank last night.

Ex. あの頃はどれほど学校が嫌いだったことか。

= Anokoro wa dorehodo gakkou ga kiraidatta koto ka.

= You have no idea how much I hated going to school at that time.

Ex. どれほどの金持ちでも人の心は買えない。

= Dorehodo no kanemochi demo hito no kokoro wa kaenai.

= No matter how rich you are, you can’t buy people’s hearts.

!star! moderation : ほど(=hodo) +よい(=yoi) = just right, right amount, moderate ~ adequate ~

Ex. この人参をほどよい大きさに切って下さい。

= Kono ninjin wo hodoyoi ookisa ni kitte kudasai.

= Please cut this carrot in a right size.

Ex. 4対4の合コンってほどよい人数だね。

= Yon tai yon no goukon tte hodo yoi ninzuu dane.

= A mixer (match making party ) of a group of four men and four women is just the right number.

Ex. ここは、ほどよい大きさの店だ。

= Koko wa hodoyoi ookisa no mise da.

= The size of the store (restaurant, bar) is just right.

!star! ほど遠い(=hodo tooi) = far from

Ex. マギーは理想の女性にはほど遠い。

= Maggie wa risou no josei niwa hodotooi.

= Maggie is far from my ideal woman.

Ex. 正解からほど遠い。

= Seikai kara hodo tooi.

= Not even close to the right answer.

:rrrr: I made a mini lesson long time ago so go check. ほど遠い(=hodo tooi)

!star! the more (someone does something) the more ~

:rrrr: verb + (ba) + verb +ほど(=hodo) + result

Ex. 彼のことを知れば知るほどわからなくなる。

= Kare no koto wo shireba shiru hodo wakaranaku naru.

= The more I get to know him, the more I don’t understand him.

Ex. あの人のことを好きになれば好きになるほど、心が痛い。

= Anohito no kotowo suki ni nareba suki ni naru hodo kokoro ga itai.

= The more I love him/her, the more my heart hurts.

Ex. この化粧水は使えば使うほど肌がしっとりします。

= Kono keshousui wa tsukaeba tsukau hodo hada ga shittori shimasu.

= The more you use this lotion, the more moist your skin gets.

Ex. 日本語は勉強すればするほど、奥が深くなる。

= Nihongo wa benkyou sureba suruhodo oku ga fukaku naru.

= The more I study Japanese, the deeper it gets.


:maggie-small: From the picture above :


= Kare no koto wasureyou to sureba suruhodo, omoidashichau.

= The more I try to forget about him, the more I remember him….

Note : ちゃう(=chau) is a casual contraction of してしまう(=shite shimau.)

:rrrr: adjective+ ば~ほど(=ba ~ hodo ~ )

Ex. 人数が多ければ多いほど楽しいです

= Ninzuu ga ookereba ooi hodo tanoshii desu.

= The more the merrier.

Ex. ホテルは安ければ安いほどいいです。

= Hoteru wa yasukereba yasui hodo ii desu.

= The cheaper hotel is better.

Ex. お返事は早ければ早いほど助かります。

= Ohenji wa hayakereba hayai hodo tasukarimasu.

= The sooner you reply to me the better for me.

!star! There is a limit for/to~ / Things have limit :

When something is way too much you can say,

:rrrr:~ にもほどがある(=~ nimo hodo ga aru) = There is a limit for/to ~

Ex. 図々しいにもほどがある。

= Zuuzuushii nimo hodo ga aru.

= What a nerve. / You have some nerve.

Ex. ばかばかしいにもほどがある。

= Babakashii nimo hodo ga aru.

= It’s way too stupid.

Ex. 冗談にもほどがある。

= Joudan nimo hodo ga aru.

=It has gone way beyond the joke.

Usually you use this expression for something negative but there is a very colloquial expression to refer to someone way too cute,

Ex. かわいいにもほどがある。

= Kawaii nimo hodo ga aru.

= (Someone is) way too cute.

Go check this mini lesson. ~にもほどがある(=~ nimo hodo ga aru.)

If you hear this expression, feel free to remember me. :)

!star! Others : ほどほど(=hodohodo) the right amount, moderately

When you control the amount of things/activities.

Ex. ほどほどにしておきなさい。

= Hodohodo ni shite okinasai.

= Don’t do too much. (Know your limit.)

Ex. お酒はほどほどに。

= Osake wa hodohodo ni.

= Don’t drink too much./ Drink moderately.

Ex. これからは煙草もほどほどにしておきます。

= Korekarawa tabako mo hodohodo ni shiteokimasu.

= I will smoke moderately. (I will control the amount of cigarettes I smoke.)


!star! ~の (= ~ no hodo) : Business/ Formal

In business or formal situations, you see/hear these kind of expressions.


= Gokakunin no hodo yoroshiku onegai itashimasu.

We thank you in advance for looking into (checking)  this matter.


= Gorikai no hodo yoroshiku onegai itashimasu.

= We thank you in advance for your understanding.


= Gokyouryou no hodo yoroshiku onegai itashimasu.

=We thank you in advance for your cooperation.


= Goaiko no hodo yoroshiku onegai itashimasu.

= We thank you in advance for doing business with us.

マギー先生より= Maggie Sensei yori = From Maggie Sensei


=Korede “hodo” no tsukaikata wakarimashita ka?

= Do you know how to use “hodo” now?


= Korehodo nagai ressun ni naru towa omoimasen deshita.

= I had no idea this lesson would be this long.


= Maggie Sensei no saito hodo “Hodo” ni tsuite kuwashiku setsumei shiteiru saito wa nai desu yo.

= No other site explains how to use “hodo” as well as this site.