How to use 限り ( = kagiri) ・限る ( = kagiru)



= Nihongo wo benkyou suru nara neko no sensei ni kagiru yo.

= A cat teacher is the best to study Japanese with.

Hi everyone! I am your guest teacher today, Polly.

よろしく! (= Yoroshiku! ) Nice to meet you!

Today’s lesson is a request lesson.
I will teach you how to use the word 限り ( = かぎり)  kagiri and 限る ( = かぎる)kagiru.
It is listed as an N2 level word but once you learn how to use it, you’ll find it isn’t so hard to use.
Here we go!

限り ( = かぎり)  kagiri : (noun)  limit

:rrrr: (verb限る ( = kagiru) to limit

★How to use it:

★noun + ( = ni) + 限る ( = kagiru) /  (more polite) 限ります ( = kagirimasu) : = Something is only limited to ~

(1)  Something is only limited to ~

Ex. このゲームの購入は、お一人様1個に限ります。

= Kono geimu no kounyuu wa, ohitorisama ikko ni kagirimasu.

= (Literal translation: The purchase of this game is limited to one game per person.)

= One game per person per purchase.

Ex. この映画は15歳以上の人に限る

= Kono eiga wa juugosai  ijou no hito ni kagiru.

= This movie is for people 15 years old and older.

Ex. お申し込みはネットに限ります。

= Omoushikomi wa netto ni kagirimasu.

= We only accept applications through the Internet.

🔸 Net slang expression


= Tadashi ikemen ni kagiru

= Only if  you are  a cool handsome guy./ unless you are handsome/  Limited to a cute  guy

(written expression. You jokingly add this quote as a condition)

Ex. 夢がある男の人が好き。


= Yume ga aru otokono hito ga suki.

= Tadashi ikemen ni kaigiru.

= I love a guy who has a dream.

 = But he has to be cute.

(2) noun/ verb present tense + 限る(= ni kagiru) nothing is better than ~ / ~ is the best

Ex. 寒い日は鍋に限る

= Samui hi wa nabe ni kagiru.

= There is nothing better than “hot pot cuisine” in winter.

Ex. 女の子が泣いていたらただ黙って話を聞いてあげるに限る

= Onnanoko ga naite itara tada damatte hanashi wo kiite ageru ni kagiru.

= When a girl is crying, it is best to just listen to her.

Ex. 日本語の勉強は好きなアニメに限る

= Nihongo no benkyou wa sukina anime ni kagiru.

= There is nothing better than using one’s favorite anime to study Japanese.

noun + 限り( = kagiri) = just ~/ limited in ~

noun + 限り ( = kagiri) +   ( = no) + noun

*To give some restrictions/conditions:

Ex. 力の限りがんばります。

= Chikara no kagiri ganbarimasu.

= I will do the best to my ability.

Ex. その場限りの言葉で慰めて欲しくない。

= Sonoba kagiri no kotoba de nagusamete hoshikunai.

= I don’t want them to console me with the words just for the occasion.

*time related word + 限り ( = kagiri)

*time related word + (wo) + 限り ( = kagiri) + ( = ni)  (more formal)

 :rrrr: as of the end of ~, some of the continuing action/event will end, ~ will be the last day/week / month/year to do something

Ex. 制服を着るのも今日限りだ。

= Seifuku wo kiru no mo kyou kagiri da.

= Today is the last day wearing a uniform.

( I won’t wear it from tomorrow.)

Ex. 彼は今年限りで相撲を引退する。

= Kare wa kotoshi kagiri de sumou wo intai shimasu.

= He will retire from Sumo wrestling after this year.

Ex. 今日限りで彼と付き合うのをやめます。

= Kyou kagiri de kare to tsukiau no wo yamemasu.

= I won’t see him again after today.

(Today is the last day to see him.)

Ex. 本日限りで*退職いたします。

= Honjitsu kagiri de taishoku itashimasu.

= As of today, I am leaving this company.

* You can also say 本日を限り(= honjitsu wo kagiri ni) (more formal)

★  noun + ( = ni) + 限り ( = kagiri)/限って ( = kagitte):

(1) limited to ~, something happens,  you do something at a particular time

Ex. いつも日曜日はお休みですが、明日に限って仕事があります。

= Itsumo nichiyoubi wa oyasumi desu ga, ashita ni kagitte shigoto ga arimasu.

= I usually have a day off on Sundays but tomorrow is an exception. (I have to work tomorrow.)

Ex. この3日間に限り全品50%オフです。

= Kono mikka kan ni kagiri zenpin gojuppasento ofu desu.

= All the products are 50 percent off limited to these three days.

Ex. 今日に限って一万円札が財布に入っていない。

= Kyou ni kagitte ichiman-en satsu ga saifu ni haitte inai.

= Today of all days is the day I don’t have a 10,000 yen bill in my wallet.

(2) S is the last one to do something

Ex. うちの子に限ってそんなことをするはずはありません。

= Uchi no ko ni kagitte sonna koto wo suru hazu wa arimasen.

= My child is the last person who would do such a thing.
( My child would never do such a thing.)

Ex. 彼に限ってそんなことをするわけがない。

= Kare ni kagitte sonna koto wo suru wake ga nai.

= He is the last person who would do such a thing.

★  verb/adj + noun + ( = ni) + 限り ( = kagiri)/限って ( = kagitte) + something unexpected happens 

 :rrrr:   only when ~ , whenever ~ Just when, ~  

Ex. 夫はいつもは家にいないのに友達が来るときに限って出かけない。

= Otto wa itsumo wa ie ni inai noni tomodachi ga kuru toki ni kagitte dekakenai.

= My husband is usually not home but whenever my friends come over, he’s home.

Ex. いつも暇なのに今日に限って忙しい。

= Itsumo hima nano ni kyou ni kagitte isogashii.

= I am usually free, but today of all days I am busy.

Ex. 忙しい時に限って母から電話がある。

= Isogashii toki ni kagitte haha kara denwa ga aru.

= My mother calls me whenever I am busy.

★Talking about opposite characteristics of what people would think, assume. (You may think A is ~ but actually it/he/she is quite opposite) 

Ex. 威張っている人に限って気が弱い。

= Ibatte iru hito ni kagitte  ki ga yowai.

= Those who are arrogant tend to be cowards.

verb (present) plain form + 限り( = kagiri): as long as/as far as / unless

Ex. 自分が変わらない限り何も変わらない。

= Jibun ga kawaranai kagiri nanimo kawaranai.

= As long as you don’t change yourself, nothing will change.

Ex. マギー先生のサイトがある限り私は日本語の勉強を続けます。 :) 

= Maggie sensei no saito ga aru kagiri watashi wa nihongo no benkyou wo tsuzukemasu.

= As long as there Maggie Sensei exists, I will keep studying Japanese.

Ex. 僕は命がある限り、君のことを守ります。

= Boku wa inochi ga aru kagiri, kimi no koto wo mamorimasu.

= I will protect you as long as I am alive. ( = my whole my life)

Ex. 私の知る限り、それはありません。

= Watashi no shiru kagiri, sore wa arimasen.

= Not that I know of.

verb (present) plain form + 限り( = kagiri) + ( = no) + noun

Ex. 私が知っている限りのことをお話します。

= Watashi ga shitte iru kagiri no koto wo ohanashi shimasu.

= I will tell you as much as I know.

Ex. 見渡す限りの雪景色

= Miwatasu kagiri no yukigeshiki

= There is nothing but snowscapes as far as the eye can see.

Ex. 出来る限りのことをします。

= Dekiru kagiri no koto wo shimasu.

= I will do as much as possible.

verb (present) plain form / noun++ 限り( = kagiri)+では ( = dewa)

Ex. 辞書を見た限りでは、そんな言葉はないようだ。

= Jisho wo mita kagiri dewa, sonna kotoba wa nai you da.

= As far as the dictionary, there seems to be no such a word.

Ex. 彼の様子を見てきた限りでは、別におかしなところはない。

=Kare no yousu wo mite kita kagiri dewa, betsu ni okashina tokoro wa nai.

= As far as I have been observing him, there is nothing strange about him.

~からといって~ とは限らない ( = to wa kagiranai) Just because ~ , it doesn’t mean ~

Ex. 毎日メールをくれるからといって彼が私のことを好きとは限らない

= Mainichi meiru wo kureru kara to itte kare ga watashi no koto wo suki towa kagiranai.

= Just because he texts me every day, doesn’t mean he loves me.

Ex. いい大学を出たからといっていい会社に就職できるとは限らない

= Ii daigaku wo deta kara to itte ii kaisha ni shuushoku dekiru to wa kagiranai.

= Just because you graduated from a good university, doesn’t mean you’ll get a job at a nice company.

Ex. お金持ちだからといって気前がいいとは限らない

= Okanemochi dakara to itte kimae ga ii towa kagiranai.

= Just because you are rich doesn’t mean you are generous.

Ex. 彼から連絡がないからといって彼になにかあったとは限らない

= Kare kara renraku ga naikara to itte kare ni nani ka atta to wa kagiranai.

= Just because you haven’t heard from him, it doesn’t mean something happened to him.

~とは限らない ( = ~ to wa kagiranai.) to deny some common belief / suggesting other possibilities

Ex. 「100円のケーキと600円のケーキだったら600円のケーキの方が美味しいに決まっているじゃない。」

= Hyaku-en no keiki to roppyaku en no keiki dattara roppyaku en no keiki no hou ga oishii ni kimatte iru janai.

= If you compare 100 yen cake and 600 yen cake, it is obvious that the 600 yen cake is more delicious.


= Demo takai hou ga oishii to wa kagiranai yo.

= But it is not necessarily true that the more expensive ones are more delicious.

Ex. 親が言うことがいつも正しいとは限らない

= Oya ga iu koto ga itsumo tadashii towa kagiranai.

= What parents say is not always right.

Ex. 日本人だから日本語を教えられるとは限らない

= Nihonjin dakara nihongo wo oshierareru towa kagiranai.

= Just because someone is Japanese, it doesn’t mean they can teach Japanese.

adjective + 限り( = kagiri) very ~

Ex. 試験にやっと合格したのは嬉しい限りです。

= Shiken ni yatto goukaku shita no wa ureshii kagiri desu.

= I am extremely happy that I finally passed the exam.

Ex. これからのことを考えると心細い限りだ。

= Korekara no koto wo kangaeru to kokoro bosoi kagiri da.

= Just thinking about my future makes me feel extremely uneasy.

maggie-senseiマギー先生より = Maggie Sensei yori = From Maggie Sensei

Polly先生ありがとう!= Polly Sensei arigatou! = Thank you, Polly sensei.


= Minna ga kono saito ni kite kureru kagiri, nihongo no ressun wo tsukuri tsuzukemasu.

= As long as you come to visit this site, I will keep making Japanese lessons here.


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  1. Hi, 先生!I’ve come back to this post a couple times, but I just can’t figure out which meaning of 限る is being used in this:

    This line is from a game I log into from time to time to practice Japanese. When you click on the character on the home screen, they talk. In this particular example, I guess the “…” represents the character listening to our response, which is apparently 「そういうやつに限って」.

    But I’m confused. If I were to reconstruct the conversation, it would be:
    Character: 俺、絶対に結婚遅いタイプだわー。
          I’m totally the type to get married late.
    Me:     そういう奴に限りますね。
          Yeah, you’re limited to that type of person (?????)
    Character: んなわけねーし。
          No way/Of course not.
    That’s not a conversation that makes very much sense to me. Basically the character says something, I agree, then he suddenly says the opposite? I’m definitely missing something here…

    1. Hi Sora

      I added a little note for you.
      ★Talking about opposite characteristics of what people would think, assume. (You may think A is ~ but actually it/he/she is quite opposite)

      Ex. 威張っている人に限って気が弱い。
      = Those who are arrogant tend to be cowards.

      そういうやつに限って is the same usage of this one.
      The speaker didn’t finish the sentence but

      The one who says “I am getting married later in life” tends to get married (early)…. No, I’ll take it back. There is no way.

      1. Ohhhhhh, that makes sooooo much sense!
        Thank you so much, 先生!I definitely would’ve never figured that out on my own 😅

  2. Hello! 先生, I’m having trouble to get the meaning of this sentence. By the way, it’s from the music “夏夜のマジック” by Indigo la End.


    What’s the usage of 限り in those sentences? I tried to translate it, but I can’t get the usage of 限り. Please, correct me, if I got it wrong.

    Now, I feel I can understand you.
    With this summer night’s magic.
    With tonight’s magic.

  3. Hi Maggie sensei! I’ve been using your website for japanese grammar and it’s really helpful. However I still don’t quite understand the kagiri thing and there was a sentence I heard when I was watching anime and I don’t get the use of kagiri here?

    ‘Soredemo yurusareru kagiri soba ni itai to omotte ita’
    of which the translation was:
    But still, I wanted to stay close to her as long as possibl.

    Could you help me?

    1. Hi Wendy

      This “yurusareru” is a passive form of “許す= yurusu so it means “to be allowed, to be permitted”
      限り= kagiri means “as long as”
      So the literal translation is “As long as I am allowed” →”As long as you allow me”
      →So the translation “As long as possible” is right.

  4. 寒い日は鍋に限る
    can i translate this as “As for cold days, it is limited to nabe” or “cold days are limited to hotpot”

    can i flip the translation as
    “As for purchasing this game, nothing is better than one game for one person”

    For the first two usages outlined, it seems confusing to me to distinguish between “Limited to ~” and “Nothing is better than ~” because they seem mechanically the same, that is, it has “Noun + ni + kagiru”

    on a slightly unrelated note
    i’m tripped up by ただ黙って in this sentence. does that part mean “Just be quiet”?
    As in, “If girl is crying, just be quiet, and it is best to listen to her 話”?

    Thank you for these nuanced lessons, even if they feel overwhelming at times :)

    1. Hi Noel,

      OK, let me explain one by one.

      このゲームの購入は、お一人様1個に限ります (This 限る means “limited” / You often see this person お一人様+ number+counter)
      So the literal translation will be
      As for this game, it is limited to purchase one per person.

      The second question

      たた黙って = just being quiet + modifies a verb 聞いてあげる = to listen
      If a girl is crying, it is the best to listen to her being quiet.

  5. Thank you for making this lesson easy to understand Maggie 先生!

    I would like to ask something although this is a different one.
    So I translated “安定した収入があるとも限らない” which is written in the manga that I’m currently reading and I wonder how it turned out like this..
    – You don’t always have a stable income –

    Maggie 先生、どうやって「とも限らない」を使ったらいいですか?宜しくお願いします!

    1. こんにちは、Uary!

      Your translation is OK!
      とも限らない:The usage is almost the same as とは限らない but とも限らない implies there are some cases that might happen (It is not always true).
      You may not be able to tell the difference well by the English translation because it’s the same but compare to とは限らない, it denies the possibility more softly.

  6. isn’t it that kagiri and youdewa somewhere have same nuance?
    can’t they be used interchangeably?

    1. They could be interchangeable but ようでは involves the speaker’s feelings/emotions towards the target person more.

      show more frustration than 限り

      1. 先生、ありがとうございます。


        今年限りでは、会社をやめようとおもっています。Can the 2nd part of the sentence be in volitional form?

        1. Hello,
          1) →世界に資源があるかぎり
          the part 人生ができる is not clear. You mean 生活ができる?
          2) 今年限りで the rest is fine.

  7. Maggie sensei,

    (It becomes my habit (a rule) that I will read Maggie sensei site every morning). I write the English here for worrying of my bad Japanese , ひひ)


    Today, my question is about this sentence


    = Kare ni kagitte sonna koto wo suru wake ga nai.

    = He is the last person who would do such a thing.

    Does it mean 彼以外に他の人がそんなことをするわけがない, my sensei ?

    1. Hi
      彼に限ってそんなことをするわけがない。 means “There is no way that he would do such a thing.”
      Maybe other people would do but not him.
      So it doesn’t mean 彼以外に他の人がそんなことをするわけがない because that means he would do that but not other people.

      OK, let me help your Japanese sentences a little.

      →毎朝、Maggie先生のサイトを読むことにしています。or 読むようになりました。
      だから、毎日質問が来ているです。。。→I guess it’s OK…How about 毎日、質問が出てきます。

      毎日、ここで勉強してくれてうれしいです。 ☺️

      1. Thank you sensei for correcting my Japanese.

        I understand that sentence now.
        But how about replacing にかぎってhere with にかぎり


        I am confused about にかぎって here. Since I think にかぎって is used to compare the situation in the 範囲 with にかぎって and the normal situation.

        It means “普段はかれはあまり飲まないですけど今日だけかなりのんだ”

        Thank you sensei.

        1. Aさんに限り/限って〜Vない
          That would be the last thing that A would do.
          A won’t do such a thing.
          When you use (someoneに)限り/限って in a negative sentence, it means “someone” is the last person who would do that.

          It is an affirmative sentence. 限って modifies 今日 and it means “limited to /Only ~”
          →Just today

          1. Thank you sensei,

            Ah sensei, 今N3を勉強していますけど、ちょっとN2の項目を読んでみました。で、サイトにN2の文法レッソンがあまり多くないと思います。N2の文法はどこにのせたですか、先生?

          2. N2はまだ少ないと思いますが、どのレッスンにもN2レベルの人が見ても何かを学んでもらえるような情報をいれています。

            最近、JLPTのレベル分けのTAGを入れましたが、About Usのページに書いてあるように、このサイトはJLPTのためのサイトではないのでもしJLPTの勉強だったらきちんとテキストを使って勉強した方がいいですよ。がんばってね。

  8. Hello Maggie Sensei, could you help me figure out the meaning of the following sentence:


    If my interpretation is correct, it says something like
    “Since there’s a common opinion that the people who insist they’re not “bad” tend to be the “bad” ones, you have to be really careful ( implies that there’s a lot of such people out there?)”
    I’m not 100% sure what part of the setence “は一般論としてある点は” refers to.

    1. Maggie sensei,


  9. Maggie Sensei, Thank you for your lessons. Please don’t tire making japanese lessons. I see your lessons very helpful since I am studying for my JLPT exams. In fact,I am making your site my default site.

    1. @Jodel Quijano

      Hi Jodel,
      Thank you so much for your nice message. I am happy to hear you find my lessons helpful.
      Don’t worry! I’ll never get tired of making lessons! :)

  10. マギー先生

    Written Warning is given up to twice every15days since the obligation is not fulfilled。

    1. @Herlina

      こんにちは Herlina

  11. Hi Maggie Sensei! Thank you for all your lessons! When you use adjective + 限り and you wanted to make it past tense, you would say, for instance “うれしい限りだった” right?

    Another question that I tried to ask before but I’m not sure if my comment ever went through:
    What’s the difference between V+きる/V+きれない and V+おわる? I know V+きる has a meaning “to have successfully done/completely finished doing something” like I saw in that lesson, but so does V+おわる. Can you explain how they differ? Thanks!

    1. @Shi

      Sorry for the late reply, Shi.
      Your comment went through. I couldn’t activate your comment because I was away from home.
      うれしい限りだった →Yes, you use adjective+限り+だった for the past tense.

      V 終わる is focusing on the action, finish doing something.
      V きる is finish doing something with all your energy, power or focusing on completion until the last part of it.

      For example
      食べ終わる = finish eating. (simply you finish the action of eating.)
      食べ切る = You focus on what you are eating. It is usually use for large portion. When you finish eating until the last piece, you say 食べ切る。

  12. is it OK to say Okashii tokoro wa nai instead of okashina tokoro wa nai

    what I wanted to say is:
    Is it OK to say Okashii tokoro wa nai instead of okashina tokoro wa nai?

    If my sentence is wrong, can you teach me?

    thank you Maggie sensei :w:

    1. @Roro

      Hi Roro,
      You can use “代わりに” for “instead of”

      1. oh yes.. I remembered that I studied ( kawari ni) before :)
        your sentence is much easier to understand than mine :(
        My problem is I forget to use such easy words but I recognize them quickly.. I guess it is because I know so many word that I even forget the easiest ones….

        but still you didn’t answer my question. is it right to say okashii tokoro instead of okashi na tokoro?

        thank you again Maggie sensei

        1. @Roro

          Oh that was your question. Sorry. I thought you just wanted me to correct your sentence.
          Yes, you can say both okashii tokokoro and okashina tokoro.

  13. マギー先生、ご機嫌はいかが。

    Thank you very much for this lesson, this grammar was totally new to me. I love grammarlessons. Thats why I tested your explanations on a hundred or so sentences, and could translate all of them. Which officially makes this lesson a great one. !happyface!


    “Tadasih ikemen ni kaigiru.” :rrrr: “tadashi” “kagiru”

    “Ex. 日本人だからと日本語を教えられるとは限らない。
    = Nihonjin dakara nihongo wo oshierareru towa kagiranai.” :rrrr: There’s a “と” thats not in the romaji

    “= Just because being rich doesn’t mean being generous.” Now thats difficult english grammar. You either need a subject (just because you’re rich doesn’t mean you’re generous), or omit “just because”.

    Since you didn’t cover na-adjectives+kagiri, I tried to search for combinations of -na+kagiri, but they seem to be rare, I could only find a few examples like 必要な限り(as long as necessary), 可能な限り (as much as possible), お金持ちな限り (as long as you are rich). I’m wondering, could one use other na-adjectives or nouns in this way and would “as … as” be the general translation pattern for these cases?


    1. @Zetsuboumanadeshi

      こんにちは! 早速、スペルチェックしてくれてありがとう!!!(As for the English translation, “it” was missing as a subject.)
      You can say 必要な限り, 可能な限り お金持ちな限り
      You also say

      I wouldn’t say na-adjecitve + 限り is rare compared to i-adjecitve+限り
      You can also use with katakana word

      (事前のご苦労様です→I know you meant “Thank you for your work in advance but “よろしくお願いします” is more natural.)

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