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In episode 76 of Fairy Tail, Gildarts said this to Natsu:

本気でそう思ったら、止めやしないよ。 (honki de sou omottara, tomeyashinai yo)

Which was translated in the subtitle as:

If that's what you honestly believe, I won't stop you.

I thought "I won't stop you" would simply be "tomenai yo", so I'm kind of lost about what nuance the extra "+yashinai" conjugation carries. What kind of negative conjugation is it?

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I speculate that Gildarts actually said "-ya shinai yo." –  ento Jun 25 '11 at 4:20
Or possibly "tome wa shinai yo"... *digs up the video to listen for herself* –  Amanda S Jun 25 '11 at 5:56
@Amanda it's at 21:23-21:27 into the video :) –  Lukman Jun 25 '11 at 6:08
Aha, found it here videolog.tv/video.php?id=647187. The quote appears at around -3:10. I hear 止めやしねーよ ("I won't [do anything like] stop you"), but other people can have a listen. –  Amanda S Jun 25 '11 at 6:13

3 Answers 3

up vote 9 down vote accepted

As others have said, this is probably really ~やしない, which is transmutation of ~はしない. What this suffix does is usually one of two things:

  1. It makes the verb a topic (with は) and then negate it. This is used to bring up the event described by the verb and then saying it won't happen (or isn't happening, have never happened - you get the point). From the context, this seems to be what's mainly happening here, Gildarts says to Natsu: "Well as for stopping you (as you may expect or fear I would try to) - no, I won't do that".

  2. It's also often used when there seems to be little intention to topicalize the verb. In such cases, I think it's mostly used as a stronger and more passionate negative than the simple ~ない.

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Does this や related to the one used in non-exhaustive list like "猫や犬や馬がいる"? –  Lukman Jun 26 '11 at 4:22
@Lukman: I don't think so. As far as I know, it's just a slightly elided form of は. –  Boaz Yaniv Jun 26 '11 at 11:09

I think "I won't bother to stop you" or "I don't bother stopping you" would be more close.

And that "ra" might be "rya", but I don't know rya can be shortened to ra or not.

Edit: above is my hypothesis about "ra", but after watching the anime provided by Amanda S, I hear as "ya-shinai" too as other said in comments.

Regarding や-しない, I can't find in 国語 dictionaries, but JMDict and one dictionary site named tangorin say that や is は and used as colloquial form to emphasize negative (ない) sense.

And it has meaning like "I woulnd't", "I am afraid ... will", ...


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So there is a "+rya shinai" conjugation, which means "I don't bother to"? How do I use it with verb5, e.g. 行く? 行きりゃしない? –  Lukman Jun 25 '11 at 6:01
@Lukman, looks ok to me, but I can't find anything for reference, so you better wait some more answers. –  YOU Jun 25 '11 at 7:03
In the first site you ref'ed there is a sample sentence: I am afraid he will fail - 彼はどうも失敗しやしないかと思う. I thought adding ya-shinai changes it to negative so 失敗しやしない should be 'he will not fail' right? –  Lukman Jun 26 '11 at 4:08
@Lukman, Imm, I guess I misunderstand the English meaning of "I am afraid", and I think that still mean "he will not fail". I should have written as "I am afraid, .. will" instead of "I am afraid I didn't" , I will update the post. –  YOU Jun 26 '11 at 4:14
-りゃしない is an informal version of -りやしない: for example, わかりゃしない is an informal version of わかりやしない. Therefore, you cannot say 行きりゃしない. It happens also with other consonants: 行きやしない can become 行きゃしない. –  Tsuyoshi Ito Jun 26 '11 at 5:22

I'm assuming that 止めりゃしない was misheard as 止めらしない, where that りゃ is a contraction of りや to りゃ.

Instead of 止めらしない it should be 止めやしない. I've seen it written and heard it said as 止めりゃしない but I suppose you can consider that a "slang mistake" treating 止める as a go-dan instead of ichi-dan. (止めやしない is more common).

止めやしない is [RYK(masu form)+や+しない], which has the same meaning as 止める(など)はしない [RTK(plain form)+(など)+は+しない] "I won't do anything like try to stop you," so you will hear both forms from time to time.

The りゃ comes in if it's a ラ行 godan verb because りや will contract to りゃ: 蹴りゃしない, which again is the same meaning as 蹴るなどはしない

Other examples with varying degrees of contraction:

逃げやしない (does not contract) == 逃げるなどはしない 行きゃしない==行きやしない (sometimes contracts) == 行くなどはしない 蹴りゃしない (always contracts) == 蹴るなどはしない

However, the entire construction is fairly rare when it's not 止めやしない, the sheer frequency of that words use probably contributes to the "incorrect slang" version of 止めりゃしない

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Are you sure? Usually I hear 〜りゃ as an abbreviation of 〜れば, not 〜るは... –  Amanda S Jun 26 '11 at 18:17
If it were れば (IZK+ば) instead of るは (RTK+は); the result would be 行けりゃしない instead of 行きやしない but it's the latter. ~れば also abbreviates into ~りゃ (なけりゃなんないよ!) but more than one thing abbreviates into りゃ because it's easy to pronounce (relatively speaking) それは→そりゃ for instance. I'm not 100% sure it's just a sound change and not some classic grammar creeping up out of the past, but I think it explains it pretty well structurally. ^_^ –  Kafka Fuura Jun 27 '11 at 1:20
I have one complaint with your answer: I'm pretty sure that the standard form of this construction uses the masu base of the verb: e.g. 行きはしない, 死にはしない, 止めはしない, etc. This then becomes 止めやしない (not 止めりゃ, as no り is involved). In verbs whose masu bases end in -i (e.g. 行き, 死に, etc.), this is further contracted e.g. 死にはしない→死にやしない→死にゃしない. –  rintaun Jun 27 '11 at 1:42
I looked a bit more and agree with you - but I have seen 止めりゃしない before around on the interwebs - so I guess mistake turned slang? I think I'll just scrap my answer. If I edited it anymore it'd be confusing. –  Kafka Fuura Jun 29 '11 at 2:11
Decided to re-write it instead. I saw a lot more 止めやしない (don't know why I didn't find it when I was writing this to begin with) so I'm more certain it's "incorrect slang" - "incorrect" because slang can't be wrong :P –  Kafka Fuura Jun 29 '11 at 2:38

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