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Grammar detail: に見える, ように見える, て見える and く見える

に見える, ように見える, て見える and く見える - looks ~
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〜に
える
means
(something) looks ~
. It is used when you are the direct observer of a situation or have some evidence to suggest it is the case. にみえる can be written in kana or in kanji as に見える.
The に見える form and the variations described here are part of a set of several similar but subtly different Japanese expressions used to describe a situation where something seems a certain way. Others include らしい, みたい, とみえる, そうです etc.
This expression is used in the following patterns:
な adjective
+
に見える
かのじょ
彼女
しあわ
えます

She looks happy.
verb plain form
+
ように見える
びょうき
病気
であるように
えた

He seemed to be ill.
verb て form
+
見える
きょう
今日
いつもちがって
える

You look different today.
い adjective minus い
+
く見える
たてもの
建物
とっても
ちい
さく
える

The buildings look so tiny.
noun
+
(のよう)に見える
たなか
田中
とても
かねも
金持
える

Mr Tanaka appears very rich.
The various forms here are very close in meaning to the とみえる form. These forms indicate that you are expressing a matter of personal opinion. とみえる is appropriate when you are describing something that objectively seems to be the case.
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Kanji used in this grammar

ケン   み to see   みえる to be seen; to appear   みせる to show   
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ヒ   かれ he   
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ジョ   ニョ   ニョウ   woman; female   おんな woman   め woman   
コウ   さち    しあわ    さいわ happiness   
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ヘイ   ビョウ   やまい illness   や to fall ill   
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キ   ケ    spirit   
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コン   キン   いま now   
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ニチ   ジツ   sun; day   ひ    -か    
ケン   コン   た to be built   たてる to build   
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ブツ   モツ   もの thing   
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ショウ   こ-    お-    ちいさい small   
デン   た rice field   
チュウ   ジュウ   なか middle   
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キン   コン   かね gold; money   
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ジ   も to hold, to have   
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