A collective term for syntax (the way sentences are put together) and morphology (forms of words, including the way new words are put together). Often used to describe function words such as particles, to describe word endings, and to talk about general sentence structure.

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1answer
181 views

Question regarding えば〜ほど

I have a question regarding えば〜ほど。My understanding of it is that it means, the more/less (property), the more/less (property). If I want to say, the more experiences one has, the more ~ , should it ...
2
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1answer
271 views

Can't parse sentence with 「へったくれもない」

In my JLPT textbook, they have this sentence: 自分{じぶん}のない者{もの}に表現{ひょうげん}もへったくれもない。 The book provides a translation, which is this: You can't talk about expression if you have none (of your ...
16
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3answers
3k views

Is Japanese really an agglutinative language?

In the linguistics topic of language typology, Japanese is often included in lists of agglutinative (or agglutinating) languages, but when learning or reading about Japanese grammar exclusively this ...
4
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1answer
237 views

How can I make sense of あるような無いような?

I'm still playing Game Boy Wars Advance 2, and it contains this dialogue: 聞いたことあるような無いような・・・ どこの軍でしたっけ? The first sentence has me confused. My intuition tells me the meaning of the sentence ...
3
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1answer
258 views

What does 手になる mean?

As the title says. I found it on weblio dictionary and it says ある人がその事に当たる。, but that doesn't help me a lot, as I can't find example sentences (and the one I have on the book I'm reading isn't too ...
1
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1answer
144 views

Is this sentence using はず complete?

I have this sentence in my flashcards, which I pulled from a JLPT textbook of mine a while back. Long enough ago that I've lost the source. It looks strange to me now, though, and I wonder if maybe I ...
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1answer
262 views

Meaning and translation お納めになられる

Tell me please, what is the meaning of お納めになられる in the following sentence. Is it just passive ? Thanks for help!
2
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1answer
198 views

Why is なんて the correct answer for this question?

Here's a question from N3文法スピードマスター。 英語も中国語もスペイン語もできる*なんて*、素晴らしいですねえ。 This question is multiple-choice, so the other incorrect choices were: なんと、など、なんか just for your information. Here's my ...
3
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1answer
522 views

Verbs which are more frequently used to built the honorific passive forms

I'd like to ask you a question about this honorific form. I will give an example as detailed as possible to make this question clear. The verb yomu is often used in passive form to show respect: ...
4
votes
2answers
345 views

Meaning of でもない in this context?

While listening to the song "Yasashisa no Riyuu", I noticed the following sentence: 今は誰の名前でもない 輝きの彼方へ Which by the fansub is translated like this: Now it doesn't matter whose name it may ...
4
votes
2answers
100 views

なので relationship does not seem to match in そうじが楽なので、部屋にはなるべく物を置かないようにしている

This is from N3文法スペードマスター。 This is one of the questions taken from the book: そうじが楽( )、部屋にはなるべく物を置かないようにしている。 The blank in the bracket is to be filled with one from this set of choices: ...
1
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1answer
1k views

What's the difference between 〜に対しての and 〜に対する?

The question understanding 対する details [noun]に対する[noun], but what is the difference between [noun]に対しての[noun] and [noun]に対する[noun]? Space ALC has a fair number of examples for both に対する and に対しての ...
2
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1answer
221 views

Past tense of なし in Classical Japanese?

Is it なしかりたらず as a usual し adjective? Or is it something weirder? I need this for a skit.
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2answers
368 views

Why is this guy hesitant to call and ask her out on a date?

This is a section of text from my JLPT textbook on page 33: ...
1
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1answer
143 views

meaning of から in following sentence

Tell me please, what is から means in the following sentence? 本当のところを言うと、この時間に悠馬さんがここを通るからと、夏目さんに教えてもらったので、待っていたんです。 Thank you very much for help!
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1answer
215 views

Interpretation of て+もらえる

In the beginning of the music video for "Guns for Hands" by Twenty One Pilots (EDIT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pmv8aQKO6k0), there's some subtitles: 君だって気付いてもらえないよ It gets translated as ...
4
votes
2answers
321 views

Fooling honest people, or honest people look foolish?

Clearly I'm still struggling with the use of ばかを見る, which I have asked about before. This sentence appears in a question in my JLPT textbook: 正直者{しょうじきもの}がばかをみない 社会{しゃかい}であるべきだ。 Based on the ...
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1answer
402 views

Can に mean the same thing as から?

あの野郎、どんだけジークさんに恩を受けたと思っていやがるんだ! In this sentence, does に mean the same thing as から ? Thank you very much for help!
4
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1answer
228 views

What is a good synonym for「〜のに」at the end of a sentence?

I'm trying to come up with a good synonymous expression to put on a flashcard for 「〜のに」at the end of a sentence like these 彼が出て行けばいいのに。(I wish he would go.) あの建物さえなければ、きれいな景色が見えるのに。(If it wasn't for ...
6
votes
2answers
230 views

What is a better translation for 「自分だけバカを見る」?

I have this phrase in my JLPT textbook, as one example of the use of バカ: 自分{じぶん}だけバカを見{み}る The translation offered in the book is: Waste time and money among others The English is both ...
4
votes
2answers
494 views

The topic is the restaurant, or the conversation is at the restaurant?

I have this sentence in my JLPT textbook: 話{はなし}の種{たね}に、新{あたら}しくできたレストランに食{た}べに行{い}ってみた。 I think I understand the part after the comma, which I believe is saying, "... tried to go eat at the new ...
8
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1answer
398 views

どうか, どうにか, どうかして - differences?

I was just wondering what the essential differences are between these and how I would use them in everyday speech. Thank you.
6
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1answer
199 views

Cohortative ましょう with and without the auxiliary construction ~てみる

In "何かしてみましょう。" meaning "Let's try/do something.", what is the literal translation of "してみましょう"? I've got "して" means "doing" and "みましょう" means "let's watch or let's?". How is "してみましょう" different ...
4
votes
1answer
285 views

Why are い-adjectives often used as nouns?

I can't really understand why sometimes い adjectives are transformed to nouns instead of just being used themselves. I.E. 白い鳥 has 300,000 google hits while 白の鳥 has 4 million. 近い家 has 113,000 ...
3
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1answer
380 views

The uses & etymology of で

In Japanese, the particle で seems to have multiple uses: Instrumental: 車{くるま}で大阪{おおさか}に行{い}った。 "I went to Osaka by car." Locative: 図書館{としょかん}で数学{すうがく}を勉強{べんきょう}している。 "I'm studying math in the ...
5
votes
3answers
252 views

What is くん doing in these sentences?

I have come across two sentences in a manga that is using くん in a way that I can't seem to find any information on, in both my books and online. I am guessing this may be some sort of slang, odd ...
2
votes
2answers
474 views

How can a friendly person be “hard to approach”?

I have this phrase in my JLPT textbook: 私{わたし}の上司{じょうし}は気{き}さくで近寄{ちかよ}りがたい My translation, which must be incorrect in some way, is, "my superior is hard to approach as he/she is friendly." It ...
5
votes
1answer
345 views

What is the meaning of から here?

Tell me please, what から means in his sentence? If I'm guessing corrctly it would translate something like "She fall on her face really hard", but still... would ”顔面に全力で” be incorrect here? Sentence: ...
4
votes
1answer
396 views

When to use にしたら when to use には?

I don't get the difference in meaning between には and にしたら like in this sentence from my textbook: 大きすぎる親の期待は、子供にしたら苦痛だ。 Expectations of parents that are too big become agony for the children. ...
3
votes
1answer
294 views

Help me please with やらなればならない

Tell me please what is the meaning of やらなればならない, maybe it's やらなければならない but still... Full sentence: 国がやらなればならない全てのことを、不蝕金鎖が担い、一定の秩序をつくりあげたのだ。 Thank you very much for the help!
3
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1answer
302 views

Combining two い-adjectives without using て

In the JLU chat, Flaw recently typed up some instructions printed on a Japanese product. Here's what they said: 直射日光の当たらない涼しい所に保管してください It appears that 所 is modified by two phrases: ...
6
votes
3answers
410 views

what exactly does the suffix とはいえ mean?

I came across the structure [V simple-past]とはいえ、、、、 and I can't figure out exactly what it means. I found this いえ is 言え, and it means the same as とは言うものの...Which I don't really understand perfectly ...
8
votes
3answers
774 views

What exactly does とばかりに mean?

My JLPT textbook has a section on the use of ~とばかりに. It explains that the term means to do something with such a strong implication that the meaning is obvious, even though one isn't directly stating ...
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3answers
238 views

What words/structures indicate an argument? (e.g. Therefore, as a result, there's strong reason to believe (x) , etc.) [closed]

To me, once of the most important parts of learning a language is the ability to read the implied message behind someone's words, and part of that is knowing when they're making a point and they're ...
6
votes
1answer
188 views

知っとった meaning of grammar?

What does the grammar form of 知るin the below sentence mean? 闇の世界とは関わるはずがないと知っとったんだろうな The sentence is from the Japanese version of Harry Potter I
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votes
3answers
442 views

What does ものでして mean?

I can't manage to understand the meaning of ものでして. An example using a full sentence could be the following: 私はしばらく、隠棲していたものでしてね。まあ怠けているのは今に始まったことでもなし・・・
3
votes
1answer
140 views

What does the phrase んと流す mean?

Meaning of んと流す Can anyone please explain the meaning of 得させんとながす to me. Full sentence: 多くの人のために、罪の赦し得させんとながすものなり。 http://s.vndb.org/sf/25/36025.jpg Thanks you very much for the help!
1
vote
1answer
146 views

Can より be used differently than saying “b more x than a”?

I could not find any examples of this usage, but what I'm basically asking is whether or not this is possible: 怒るより悲しいですよ Rather than being mad, I am sad Is this a legitimate way of using ...
17
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1answer
633 views

what is the difference between ごとに and おきに?

Both ごとに and おきに appear to mean "repeatedly at intervals". What is the difference between these two expressions?
4
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1answer
509 views

What does として mean here?

警視庁は12日、父親を鈍器のようなもので殴ったとして東京都中野区に住む少年を、傷害の疑いで逮捕した。 Tell me please, what is として means in this sentence ?
7
votes
1answer
411 views

Does the nominalizer 〜の require the adnominal form before it? If yes, why?

A while back I was trying to break down 〜なの, and this is what I decided on (with the help of some of Bart Mathias's posts on mailing lists). My hypothesis is that the nominalizer 〜の requires ...
3
votes
1answer
704 views

What's the meaning of “という” at the end of a sentence?

I'm reading about this grammar in my book but I don't get it. According to the book it means - そうだ and - らしい. Here is an example: UPDATE: Full Sentence: 従来、病院といえば白い壁が基調の空間であった。 しかし、白くて冷たい壁を見ていると ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

Does Vて+いる always mean an action already completed?

For the longest time, I thought that a verb ending in て+いる meant that one was currently doing an action, similar to how we use ~ing in English to mean a contuinuing state. So 食{た}べている means "eating". ...
4
votes
1answer
762 views

What is the meaning of ようで?

I think ようで means "to look/look like", but I'm having trouble understanding it in the context of this sentence: 感動に水を差すようで悪いのだが、さっさと爾子に乗ってくれ。でなくば、城とともに潰れるぞ。 Also, is でなくば another form of でなければ?
3
votes
1answer
514 views

Joining adjectives with し before a noun

A recent question asked about joining two adjectives together. It used the following example: (example 1) きれいで静かな町 As I understand it, this is the combination of the 連用形 of きれいだ with the 連体形 of ...
2
votes
1answer
252 views

What's the difference between the constructs (adverb) なる[naru] and (adverb)する[suru]?

e.g. what makes 相手になる different from 相手にする. I know that 「~になる」 is to be/become something, and 「~をする」 is to do something, but what does each imply when used?
1
vote
1answer
191 views

How do I use がする? (ex: いい香りがする)

I know the basic usage behind it, like saying "I wanna have lunch at Wendy's today", but I feel like there's a bunch of subtleties to it that I'm not really seeing yet
5
votes
1answer
201 views

Expressing a sequence of actions using 〜たとき?

I am aware that one can explain that to things happen at the same time using plain non past form + とき: 電車に乗るとき転びました。"I fell when I got on the train (I was going through the door when it happened)" ...
7
votes
2answers
209 views

Can んだった and んじゃなかった be used like the past version of んだ and んじゃない?

I know that んだった and んじゃなかった can be used to say "Should have done" and "Shouldn't have done". I am wondering, however, if they can be used as a past version of んだ Take for example this conversation: ...
4
votes
1answer
242 views

Question on expressing a half-completed action — 動作が中途である状態

手紙を書きかけたんですが、まだ書いていません。 I got started on the letter, but I haven't finished writing it yet. The ending かける indicates that an action has been started but has not been brought to a finish or ...