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私の祖母は私が欲しい以上のものをくれた

私の祖母は私が欲しがる以上のものをくれた

I want the meaning to be "my grandmother gave me more then I wanted." Is the second sentence right and the first sentence wrong?

I learned 欲しがる for the third person, but I found the second example as a first person example. Which is correct?

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1 Answer 1

up vote 7 down vote accepted

The generalization that がる is used only for third person is wrong. Both of your examples are grammatical, but only the first one means what you want.

私の祖母は私が欲しい以上のものをくれた
'My grandmother gave me more than what I wanted.'

私の祖母は私が欲しがる以上のものをくれた
'My grandmother gave me more than what I expressed that I wanted.'

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3  
+1 for squashing a common misconception, and for an exceptionally compact and elegant rendering of the difference in meanings. –  rdb Sep 12 '11 at 5:02
    
wow this is a powerful answer ! –  Pacerier Sep 14 '11 at 17:11
    
thank you for your answer sawa. Your translation of the 2nd example i gave, however, is awkward in english-so I am wondering if the original sentence is awkward as well in japanese? Or could one translate it as "my grandmother gave me more than I told her I wanted" ( i know the 'told her' would be a very loose translation). Any further elaboration on the がる ending would be appreciated; as the answer to the other related question on this forum seems limited. –  yadokari Sep 18 '11 at 1:47
    
I think that's because I did not put an object after express. I will fix it. –  sawa Sep 18 '11 at 4:17
1  
@sawa - Adding the "it" at the end breaks the sentence. It was perfectly grammatical without it. It might sound a little more natural to phrase it as "what I had expressed that I wanted.", though. I think the word "express" may sound a little too formal to some ears, but grammatically, I don't see anything at all wrong in the unedited sentence. –  rdb Sep 18 '11 at 5:58

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