Re: [ - Naruto FAQ - ] (possible spoilers for anime watchers)
OK. Let's get this straight.
Dattebayo has no *specific* meaning but it isn't a nonsense word. It's an 'ender' for Japanese sentences like ''desu''.
(In Rurouni Kenshin's ''degozaru'' that's just an ancient, Edo period way of ending a sentence formally.)
Other enders include:
1. ''wa'': girlish ending; usually tacked on after 'desu'
2. ''ze'': tough guy ending; usually found as a mix with desu = ''daze''
3. ''yo'': stresses the topic of the sentence
4. ''ka'': is like a Japanese question mark
5. ''kudasai'': technically a 'please' or something
6. ''da'': slang version for 'desu'
7. ''dabe'': country-hick slang (Touhoku dialect)
8. ''datte'': 'that's the way it is' or 'that's what he/she said' ender;
Remember not to take this translation *literally*. This could also be used to stress that the topic of the conversation can't be taken/argued any further.
So, ''dattebayo'' is most likely that ''datte'' + ''dabe'' + ''yo''
= 'low-class country-hick version of 'that's the way *it* is' ender.
That must be how the Americans came up with ''Believe it.''
(t/l note: Believe it would literally be 'Shinjite kudasai.')
Because of the vague, nonspecific meaning, ''dattebayo'' can be used in different ways (one is listed below).
In any case, ''dattebayo'' is a (practically made-up) combination ender that is supposed to be Naruto's catch phrase.
(a) Nani + datte + dabe + yo
(b) 'What?' + 'that's the way it is' ender + hick ender + 'stress on topic' ender
(c) t/l: ''(sheez) What is it?''
Understand now? Thank you!