Grammar Info
N3 Lesson 9: 14/22

to pretend, to act as if

Verb[ている](1) + ふりする
[い]Adjective + ふりする
[な]Adjective + + ふりする
Noun + + ふりする

(1) Verb[ない]Verb[た]
Verb[ている](1) + ふりします
[い]Adjective + ふりします
[な]Adjective + + ふりします
Noun + + ふりします

(1) Verb[ない]Verb[た]
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使用域 一般
ふりをする is an expression in Japanese that is used to show that someone is ‘pretending to be (A)’, ‘putting on airs of (A)’, or ‘acting as if (A)’. This construction comes from a combination of the noun 振(ふ)り ‘a shake’, the 副助詞(ふくじょし) (adverbial particle) , and する. It can be thought of as meaning ‘to give off the impression of (A)’, or ‘to shake off the impression of (A)’.
As ふり itself is a noun, this expression may be used with the 連体形(れんたいけい) (attributive form) of any other word.
  • この蛇(へび)は人(ひと)等(など)大(おお)きな動物(どうぶつ)近(ちか)づく死(し)んだ振(ふ)りをするらしい
    I heard that this snake pretends to be dead when humans and bigger animals approach it.
  • 僕(ぼく)は子供(こども)の頃(ころ)、よく寝(ね)ている振(ふ)りをした
    When I was a child, I would often pretend to sleep.
  • 欲(ほ)しいこれではなかったけど、せっかく買(か)ってくれたから嬉(うれ)しい振(ふ)りをする
    This is not what I wanted, but since they went out of their way and bought it for me, I will pretend that I am happy.
  • 俺(おれ)前(まえ)はそんな、元気(げんき)な振(ふ)りしなくていいよ。
    You don't have to pretend that you are happy in front of me.
  • カケル君(くん)はカエルが好(す)きからいつもカエル振(ふり)りして遊(あそ)んでいる
    Because Kakeru-kun likes frogs, he always pretends to be a frog when he plays.
Fun Fact
The noun 振(ふ)り has several different nuances in Japanese, with only one of them being used in this particular expression. That meaning is ‘to show a certain behavior pattern on the outside’. Due to this, ふり doesn’t specifically mean ‘to pretend’, just that what is happening on the outside may be different to what is happening within a person (either mentally or physically).
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There are times when my dog pretends to sleep.
The child pretended not to hear while she was being scolded.
I don’t trust people who act as if they know everything.

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