Grammar Info

N4 Lesson 5: 7/20


Less than (or equal to), Under・(and) below, Any less・fewer, Not exceeding

Actual Amount ≤ Amount + Counter


Noun + Amount + 以下(いか)
それ(1) + 以下(いか)

(1) これあれ


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About いか

In order to mark something as 'equal to, or less than (A)', 以下(いか) will be used. This is simply a combination of the kanji () which means 'by means of', and () 'below'. This expression may also be translated as 'under (A)', or 'fewer than (A)'.
To use 以下(いか), attach it to the amount that you want to highlight as the 'maximum' amount.
  • 17(さい)以下(いか)(かた)保護者(ほごしゃ)(かた)()てください
    For those of the ages 17 and under, please come with a guardian.
  • この(くるま)30万円(まんえん)以下(いか)だった
    This car was under 300,000 yen.
Similarly to the way that 以上(いじょう) can be used to mark 'everything up until now', 以下(いか) can and often is used to highlight 'everything after now', 'the rest', or 'the following'.
  • 以下(いか)同文(どうぶん)
    The rest is the same. (Usually seen in documents to notify the reader that the rest of the document basically repeats what has already been said)
  • 空港(くうこう)以下(いか)もの()って()てください
    Please bring the following to the airport.




    This house costs less than 20 million yen. (or equal to)


    In Japan, those 17 or younger cannot drive.


    If you get 80 points or less, you have to take the test one more time.


    Are there no coffee makers below 5000 yen? (not exceeding)


    There are none under this price. (less than or equal to)

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いか – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (5 in total)

  • SteveB


    While technically 以下 (and 以上) both mean equal to or more/less, is it relatively common for these points to be used where they actually just mean less/more and not ‘equal too & less/more?’
    I know there are other ways to say that specifically, but fairly sure I had seen it where the implication was just ‘less’, and wondering how common in casual use or maybe signs/notices it is?

  • Fuga


    This is something even native Japanese speakers have troubles with sometimes. As you said, 以下and以上 means equal to/less or more, but you would use 未満and超えるfor less/more and not equal to. It’s common to have them mixed up in casual speech, but not on signs and official documents/statements.

    For example: 20歳未満は飲酒してはならない。(People Under the age of 20 must not drink) and 20歳以下は飲酒してはならない。(People under the age of 20 or younger must not drink)

    以上・以下・未満・超える are used very differently when there needs to be a clear distinction, so it is safe to say you would not see these four used interchangeably on official documents or signs.

  • SteveB


    Thanks for the explanation. I figured they wouldn’t be written on anything official otherwise it would confuse everyone or give the wrong idea

    But are you saying that in casual speech, 以下 & 以上 may still get used with the implication that they mean just more/less, and not equal?

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