みたい (mitai) Meaning Japanese [JLPT N4]

Author Sandro Maglione for article 'みたい (mitai) Meaning Japanese [JLPT N4]'

Sandro Maglione

4 min reading time

Updated on 29 January 2023

みたい (mitai) Meaning Japanese [JLPT N4]

みたい (mitai) is a な adjective meaning seems, similar to, resembles. みたい is one of several ways in Japanese to indicate that something is like or is similar to something else.

みたい is a colloquial way of expressing a similarity between two objects or entities.

In this post we learn more about the meaning of みたい, how it is formed, and when みたい is used through real example sentences.


How みたい is formed

Since みたい is a な adjective it is possible to use it like any other adjective of this category.

In fact みたい can follow verbs, adjectives and nouns:

  • When みたい is placed at the end of the sentence you need to add だ (or です)
Verb+みたい+
Adjective[い]+みたい+
Adjective[な]+みたい+
Noun+みたい+
  • When みたい is applied to a noun you have to add な, while in other cases, when みたい is not at the end of the sentence, you have to add the particle に
Noun+みたい++Noun
Verb+みたい++Noun
みたい++Verb or Adverb or Adjective

(かれ)(はな)はバナナみたいに(なが)い。

His nose length looks like a banana.

みたい comes from the verb ()る, which means to see.

(あに)(さむらい)みたいな(ひと)だ。

My older brother looks like a samurai.

みたい is used more often in colloquial situations, as it is much less formal than ようだ.

もう()()れのようだ。

It looks like it's already sold-out.

(かの)(じょ)(たい)(よう)みたいな(ひと)だ。

She is a (beautiful) person like the sun.

How and when to use みたい

The main use of みたい is to indicate a similarity, something that is similar to something else.

(かれ)()(ども)みたいに(わら)う。

He laughs like a child.

In this example his way of laughing ((わら)う) is compared to that of a child (()(ども)) using みたい: it seems like..., it looks like that of....

みたい is used when what is said is based on direct and reliable information.

(かべ)(かみ)みたいに(うす)い。

The wall is thin like paper.

Sometimes in colloquial situations it is possible to omit だ (です) at the end of the sentence.

(にん)(ぎょう)さんみたい。

It looks like a doll.

みたい: just as if

Another use of みたい is to indicate a situation or experience that is just like something else. Also in this case we want to express the concept of similitude, something that seems like something else.

ジェットコースターに()っているみたいだった。

It felt just like a roller coaster ride.

みたい: something like

In colloquial situations みたい can be used to mean something like, something similar to.

アルミ

どうすればいいの?

What would you like to do?

ルケ

(まん)()みたいなものはどう?

How about something like manga?

Someone like you

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Examples of みたい

(だれ)もいないみたいだ。

It seems that nobody is there.

(ゆめ)みたいな(はな)だ。

A story that seems like a dream.

(ちゃ)みたいなものない?

Do you have something like tea?

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