On ni Kiseru/On wo Uru (恩に着せる/恩を売る – Making You Feel Grateful)

  • On ni Kiseru/On wo Uru


    Yesterday, I introduced the phrase ‘on wo ada de kaesu‘ (恩を仇で返す), which means to bite the hand that feeds you.

    There are other idioms that use ‘on‘ (恩 – “favor”), such as ‘on ni kiseru‘ (恩に着せる) or ‘on wo uru‘ (恩を売る).

    Since ‘kiseru‘ (着せる) means “to make/have someone wear something” and ‘uru‘ (売る) means “to sell something,” the literal meanings of ‘on ni kiseru’ and ‘on wo uru’ are “to make someone wear one’s favors” and “to sell one’s favors,” respectively.
    「恩」は “favor”、「着せる」は “to make someone wear something”、「売る」は “to sell something” を意味するので、「恩に着せる」と「恩を売る」の文字どおりの意味は、それぞれ “to make someone wear one’s favors” と “to sell one’s favors” になります。

    Here, ‘kiseru’ and ‘uru’ imply that you force something against someone.

    That is to say, these idioms mean to act to force someone to feel one’s favors.

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