The word "try" has a lot of different meanings. When it is translated into Japanese, there are many phrases to consider. The phrase themselves are not difficult to use or understand, but because they all have the same English translation, it may become troublesome to differentiate between them. So, in the next two lessons, we will go through each applicable phrase in great detail so that you properly learn how to express the many "try" phrases of Japanese.
As you know already, 見る means "to see." When it is after the particle て, it means "to try to..." in the sense of doing something for the sake of seeing what happens. There isn't any negative consequences necessarily implied by using it.
I'll try a new coat on.
I'll think it over.
To try to eat curry rice.
To take a chance/sink or swim.
Reading Note: 八 is read as ばち in the phrase above. Other readings of the entire phrase other than いちかばちか is wrong.
I'm going to try to finish up this piled homework at once.
Grammar Note: In this sentence, ～よう is used to emphasize one's volition to finish the homework.
～てみたい means "to want to try to..." Again, this "try" is the same "try" as in "trial and error" (試行錯誤). These patterns are not intended to describe "trials" that last longer than an occurrence.
I really want to try sushi.
漢字 Note: Sushi may also be spelled as 寿司, 鮨, or rarely as 鮓.
I want to try.
I want to try a tsukimi burger.
Word Note: It might as well be called egg burger.
10. 誰か一度会ってみたい 人がいますか。
Is there someone you would like to meet once?
11. みんなを笑いの渦に巻き込んでみたい。 (Idiomatic)
I want to put a smile on everyone's faces.
Orthography Note: In Modern Japanese spelling, helper verbs like みる in ～てみる are written as such in ひらがな. Writing the verbs in 漢字 would not be wrong, but the verb may be interpreted literally.
Colloquialism Note: In casual speech, you can tell someone to try to do something by using ～てみい.
This is used to entice someone to try to do something. ごらん is from the honorific form of みる, ご覧になる. This pattern comes from the abbreviation of the command form of this expression, ご覧なさい.
Try it. It's delicious.
Try jumping over the cactus!
漢字 Note: The 漢字 for サボテン is 仙人掌. You don't need to remember this.
Honorifics Note: Some speakers do not like ～てご覧なさい and feel that it lacks etiquette. However, as is found in dictionaries and is the case for most speakers, it is completely fine and the correct way of making ～てみる honorific.
Please come [forth].
Please try to listen carefully.
Try closing your eyes.
However, those who feel ～てご覧なさい lacks respect replace it with ～てみてください with an already honorific verb. So, the difference lies in where the honorific element of the verb phrase is.
Please try to revise/edit it.
This shows that lowering honorific standards causes problems. The first sentence may make someone sound uneducated. The second sentence comes from fears of being too pushy, which ～なさい in other contexts gives.
To complicate things more, ～てご覧なさい may not always be appropriate. However, ～てみる is typically not used in other conjugations in honorific fashion as mentioning superiors trying things is not formal. Rather, things like ～ていただく "receiving the act of...(by/from....)" would be used. So, "I received the boss eating X" rather than "X tried eating X".
This verb means "to try out" and is used a lot with ～てみる.
To try one's strength.
Have another try.
試す VS 試みる
The best way to see how these two verbs differ, it's important to see what sorts of phrases they are used in. Trying to escape from jail? 試みる will be your best choice. Simply trying to test your Japanese skills? 試す will be what you want.
To test/have a got at an escape.
To test ability.
How about testing your true skills by taking the Japanese Proficiency Test?
To test the feel of a new car.
To try another method.
Other Miscellaneous "Try" Verbs
There are plenty of other phrases in Japanese that are translated into English as "try". However, they all correspond to specific usages. Meanings like in "trying one's utmost" or "test new products" are all expressed differently in Japanese.
He tried his hardest.
To taste-test ramen.
To test new products.
To make every effort.
Who is going to try this case?
He was tried for tax evasion.
見せる means "to show". After て it isn't often written in 漢字. In this sense, it shows the showing of an action to someone. This does not necessarily have anything in common with the other phrases, but because 見せる is related to 見る, many people confuse them with the particle て.
I will show you a trick!
To show a smile.
No matter what it takes, I'll show you that I'll win.
He displayed the graph on the computer screen.
He showed great courage.
I showed them how to write my name in Kanji.
As for the future, I will certainly show that I will become a Japanese interpreter.