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Grammar detail: ちょっと

ちょっと - a little ... or a lot
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ちょっと is one of the most versatile words in Japanese, as well as one of the most common. It can often be confusing for learners, because it is such an idiomatic word that there is often no direct translation which conveys the same sense.
You may encounter it on its own: 「ちょっと …」Depending on the context, this could mean 'Just a second', 'Hang on while I think about that', or 'Perhaps a little'.
As a learner you will probably encounter it first in the daily expression ちょっと
って (please wait a little).
Most literally, ちょっと means 'a little' of something - time, attention, etc.
ちょっと
しんぶん
新聞
せてもらえません

Can I have a look at your newspaper?
Often, it is used more figuratively, especially in requests. For example:
ちょっと
でんわ
電話
かけたいです
I would like to make a phone call.
Here, rather than the literal meaning 'a little phone call', the intended meaning is more 'use your phone for a little bit'. By diminishing the request, it is made somewhat politer.
In the same way, ちょっと can be a polite way to soften a refusal, or a negative statement.
それちょっと
I don't think so, thanks ...
Perhaps the most counter-intuitive usage is when ちょっと is used in this way to 'soften' an expression that is actually quite extreme. For example:
ちょっと
むり
無理
です
That would be difficult.
Here, 'a little impossible' is used as a polite way of saying 'very difficult'.
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Kanji used in this grammar

タイ   ま to wait   
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シン   あたらしい    あら    にい- new   
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ブン   モン   き to listen, to hear   きこえる to be heard   
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ケン   み to see   みえる to be seen; to appear   みせる to show   
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デン    electricity   
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ワ   はな to talk   はなし talking   
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ム   ブ   な not   
リ    logic   
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