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.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

3
votes
1answer
143 views

Meaning of させてもらう + 事にする in this sentence

The sentence is taken from a manga in which the character kills people at a TV station in order to threaten the world : おはよう世界の諸君...これからほんのわずかな時間だけ... Hello (ladies and gentlemen of the) ...
2
votes
1answer
461 views

Double negatives in Japanese

To be clear, I'm talking in this case about double negatives originating in Japanese, not ones that are being translated into it. When I was in college, one of my professors taught the class to use ...
2
votes
2answers
158 views

When an -i form (連用形{れんようけい}) of a verb seems to be a suffix rather than a prefix?

In a previous question about コーヒー割り I learned that 割り is a form of the verb 割{わ}る "to dilute". Now I'm trying to understand the grammatical process by which this 割り form of 割る can be added to nouns ...
4
votes
1answer
224 views

Use of が vs を with transitive verb, 受け入れる(+もらえる)

This is probably fairly basic but, not being a native speaker, I'd like to confirm if my understanding of grammar of the following sentence (from 中上級日本語, Feb'14) is correct and what is natural. In ...
1
vote
2answers
173 views

Forms and conjugation of Intransitive Verbs

Can Intransitive verbs be used in Meirei form, Volitional form, ください form and other forms? According to my knowledge, Intransitive verbs are just used to state facts. So these forms should not ...
3
votes
1answer
78 views

can あいだ / あいだに be used with non-past tenses

Last week I learned to use あいだ and あいだに to express things that happen at the same time (are parallel) or things that happen while other are occurring. But I noticed that all the examples on the book ...
2
votes
3answers
338 views

できる vs ~えます form for “can”, “able to” [duplicate]

A couple of days ago I tried to express "I can ..." where "..." was some some verb or verb phrase. I used the ~て form of the ... verb followed by 出来ます but was told instead to change the form of the ...
3
votes
1answer
95 views

Grammatically correct but good writing?

The following sentence comes from 中上級の日本語 magazine for february: 新聞記事は、記者がコツコツと取材をしてデータを集め、それをもとに出来事を調べたり、関係者の話を聞いたりして書かれています。 It is grammatically correct but I find the change from active to ...
1
vote
1answer
92 views

Meaning of “[気張]{きば}らずゆっくりやっていこうね”

気張らずゆっくりやっていこうね 'ゆっくりやっていこう’ means "I'll keep on going slowly", right? But what is 気張らず?
3
votes
1answer
218 views

Trying to make sense of some JLPT practice questions

Last year's JLPT tests were made available for download recently, and so to gauge my progress and plan what to study I decided to take the N2 test. I'm right at the threshold of passing (58% overall ...
5
votes
1answer
179 views

is ~だ~だ another way of listing things, or does my JLPT book have a typo?

In my JLPT practise book, there is this sentence: 学生{がくせい}時代{じだい}は学費{がくひ}だ合宿{がっしゅく}だとお金{かね}がかかり、就職{しゅうしょく}したらしたで給料{きゅうりょう}だけで生活{せいかつ}できず、親{おや}に頼{たよ}ってしまい申{もう}し訳{わけ}ない。 I'm really just wondering ...
5
votes
1answer
126 views

“決{き}まっている” and “決められている” have the same meaning, right?

I came across this sentence written by a native speaker: (1) "学年{がくねん}ごとに学習{がくしゅう}する漢字{かんじ}が決められています。" To communicate the same meaning, I would have said: (2) "学年ごとに学習する漢字が決まっています。" #1 is passive ...
10
votes
1answer
475 views

When the agent takes を in the causative form

I've seen a few sets of terminology when referring to the causative form, so for the basic case, I will use the following: instigator が agent に 〇〇 を v-させる。 In its most basic, text-book form, we have ...
5
votes
1answer
207 views

Meaning of inversion in questions: 「何ですか、今の音は?」

I often hear questions where a phrase marked with は is moved to the end of the sentence: 今の音は何ですか? 何ですか、今の音は? I heard the second sentence above in the anime となりの関くん. A student has just ...
9
votes
2answers
343 views

Likely Sentences (Nuance in use of 〜てもらう vs Passive form)

Our professor gave us some problems where you are suppose to circle which statement the person is more likely to say. Below is an example. おまわりさん よく道を聞かれます。 よく道を聞いてもらいます。 I think this means ...
4
votes
2answers
355 views

What exactly does the grammatical form NがNなだけに mean?

In my JLPT textbook, it has a section explaining the verb form [Noun]が[Noun]なだけに. By way of explanation, it says that this means, "unlike other things, [Noun] is special, so..." I'm having a hard ...
6
votes
2answers
467 views

What function did あり perform in classical Japanese 形容詞?

In classical Japanese, many uses of 形容詞{けいようし} had あり "embedded" in them, e.g.: 熱からず = 「熱し」の連用形+「あり」の未然形{みぜんけい}+「ず」 熱かりたり = 「熱し」の連用形+「あり」の連用形{れんようけい}+「たり」 熱かれ = 「熱し」の連用形+「あり」の命令形{めいれいけい} 熱かる人 = ...
6
votes
2answers
195 views

What´s the (entire) direct object in this sentence?

人の手を刺す        stab someone in the hand. 人の手に短剣を刺す     stab a dagger in someone's hand. What's the direct object in the second sentence? Is it just 短剣 or 人の手に短剣? I ask because in the first ...
4
votes
1answer
306 views

Help translating this japanese sentence please?

I really really need help with this sentence I have tried everything but I don't get its structure and how to translate it so I'd appreciate if someone could help please? オレ一人 ore hitori ...
0
votes
1answer
141 views

whats the difference between し and と?

I thought I knew this but it has just been explained to me in Japanese class and now I am totally confused. I had always thought と was "and" but apparently it more usually means "or"; when you want ...
6
votes
3answers
418 views

のに and のが. How do they differ in the context below?

この本は読むのに簡単だ。This book is easy to read. この本は読むのが簡単だ。This book is easy to read. I was wondering if anyone could explain to me how these two readings differ in nuance? When there is a sentence ...
8
votes
3answers
647 views

Is this って equivalent to 「と」?

Is the って in the following sentence equivalent to 「と」 as in AはBと変わる/違う? 昔から好きな曲って変わらないみたい。 My favourite songs have not changed for many years. Does this mean it is equivalent to the と used ...
4
votes
2answers
137 views

meaning of て-form + られない

I assume that 死んでられない is 死んでる in the negative potential form, which means it would mean something like "I can't be dying" or "I can't be dead". Can anyone help me understand this better?
6
votes
2answers
126 views

Modifying adjectives: カンペキ [に or な?] 思ったとおりの仕上がり

I have a question about カンペキに in the following sentence. As far as I can guess it modifies the whole 「思ったとおりの仕上がり」, but grammatically I cannot understand why. Well, 仕上がり is a noun, so wouldn't カンペキな ...
14
votes
8answers
2k views

What are other language equivalents to Japanese particles?

When a person is learning は and が in terms of particles, what are the best way to relate them to English equivalents? The closest I can come to explaining them to others is "the" and "a" but I'm not ...
4
votes
2answers
141 views

Unusual usage of 勝 (勝たしてくれ?)

I was reading a comic and came across the following usage of 勝 which confused me. この試合でオレを三橋に勝たしてくれ! I know what it means (Help me beat Mihashi in this game), but I'm not sure about how to ...
2
votes
1answer
192 views

Why use 分 in this question?

I have come across the following sentence : そのダンボ-ルゴミに出す分ですか? I understand it means something like "Are you throwing out this cardbox?". But what does 分 mean in this context and why is it at that ...
4
votes
1answer
389 views

History of だ、です、 and である

Historically where did all of these different forms arise, and when are they used? I noticed that だ and である both have their place in different 文法形, what is the difference in their meaning? I know that ...
3
votes
2answers
129 views

Using declarative だ with negative i-adjectives

I am complete beginner and I've got a question that I wish to ask you: When negating an i-adjective (-くない), should we, as in the affirmative form, omit the declarative "だ"? For example, is it ...
1
vote
1answer
241 views

推量の助詞、「う」… does this particle exist?

On this site, when asking about でしょう・だろう, as well as ましょう etc, I have been told that it is a combination of the verb's 未然形 and the 推量 particle "う". However, I have never been able to find anything on ...
4
votes
1answer
504 views

The meaning of く

I was browsing fairly random old questions to see if I could learn a few little things ( I could) and stumbled across this one- The topic is the restaurant, or the conversation is at the restaurant? ...
4
votes
1answer
359 views

Could somebody please translate this and show me what I'm missing?

Just for a little bit of context: There's a flyer about a Japanese church's beach retreat that's been sent around, and I'm trying to translate it for practice. That being said, the flyer has been ...
2
votes
1answer
309 views

Is there a term for using conjugating verbs such that the sentence continues with another clause?

I'm referring specifically to using the て form to form a pseudo conjunction, and specifically the transformation of verbs in formal writing by using the verb stem instead of て form. For example the ...
6
votes
2answers
566 views

How to use に with “masu-stem (連用形 stem) + に + Verb” structure

Could somebody provide a bit more explanation, possibly giving correct and incorrect examples on how to use に with "masu-stem (連用形 stem) + に + Verb" as illustrated in the following examples? Both ...
6
votes
1answer
214 views

Using に twice in the [Verb-連用形]に行く sentence pattern

Consider these example sentences given by my grammar dictionary: (1) 私はデパートへ贈り物を買いに行った。 (2) そこへ何をしに行くんですか。 Observation: The location is marked by へ instead of に. Considering that a ...
3
votes
1answer
305 views

Why do things which attach to the 連用形 of 動詞 attach to the stem of 形容詞?

When you want to connect a 活用語 (inflectable word) to something else, generally you inflect it to the 連用形 (continuative form). However, with 形容詞 (i-adjectives), there are certain times where you affix ...
1
vote
1answer
198 views

What is the meaning of もらう here?

I know that もらう has the meaning of 'get' or 'receive', but I am confused with it when it is used in the sentence below: 面白いのでたくさんの人に読んでもらいたい How do I understand the auxiliary verb 'もらう' in this ...
3
votes
3answers
211 views

How to translate て-form + ろ

In the Japanese exclamation: 待ってろよ! What function does ろ have and how should it be translated to English? I've searched everywhere, but I can't seem to find a decent explanation. The only thing ...
1
vote
1answer
119 views

What is the purpose of る in the sentence?

I know the form ている, but is there any other form like just てる without an い between ? This is the sentence that I'm confused with : 写真の右に写ってる小物が気になります。なんやろね?
3
votes
4answers
428 views

the difference between てある and past forms?

As I understand it てある is rather different to ている in that it refers to a resultant state rather than an ongoing action. However I wonder...what then is the practical difference between a resultant ...
2
votes
1answer
144 views

Superfluous 何か/どれか etc

I saw in my Deathnote manga the sentence, 何か欲しいものはない? I also saw in my game I'm playing in Japanese "これらの絵でどれか気に入るものがありますか". I was wondering, why do どれか and 何か seem superfluous? It seems like they ...
2
votes
1answer
125 views

Using を/に+伴う and meaning of 後接させる (+ 現場指示 and 文脈指示)

Here is the sentence (from the 日本語文法ハンドブック : 疑問詞が 「が」 「を」 以外の格助詞を伴う時はその格助詞の後にそのまま 「も」 を後接させます。 My guess : When the interrogatives are accompanied by a case-marking particle other than "が" ...
3
votes
2answers
750 views

What's the difference between「~と言いました」and「~と言っていました」?

「~と言{い}いました」and「~と言{い}っていました」 basically the difference between します and しています.
4
votes
2answers
182 views

Meaning of ~と言えよう

Just as the title says, I'm looking for the meaning of this construction, like used in the following sentence: 野菜や果物の害虫を防ぐために、さまざまな農薬が使われているが、これは人間の健康の面から考えると、問題があると言えよう。 Thanks in advance for ...
16
votes
1answer
839 views

Japanese Buts: でも, しかし, ただ, ただし, ところが, が, けど, けれど, けれども

I'm sure someone asked a similar question but I did a search and couldn't find any. Usually I just translate everything into but, but (no pun intended) I think it's about time I got into the nitty ...
1
vote
1answer
218 views

「[壁際]{かべぎわ}の前と同じ場所」とはどういう意味ですか?

壁際の前と同じ場所に彼は立っていた。 これはどういう意味ですか。 太字の部分が理解できません。 お願いいたします。
3
votes
1answer
112 views

Using も in place of を

I'm currently trying to get back into studying Japanese. I want to take the JLPT N3 this summer. To get myself in the mode for this I am first looking at the N4 tests on the JLPT website. The ...
3
votes
2answers
166 views

Particle に (and で) in this sentence

I don't get why に is used in addition to は in the following sentences. 指示詞 に はコソアドで始まる規則的な体系があります。 Concerning the demonstratives, there is a regular system (of words, i guess) that starts by ...
5
votes
1answer
217 views

Meaning of として in this sentence

I don't get why として is used instead of を in this sentence, as it doesn't seem to fit with the "as" sense that I know. 品詞と無関係にコソアドとして一括して扱うのが一般的です。 What I understand is this: Treating コソアド as ...
2
votes
1answer
71 views

Difference between 出向させられる & 出向する

Is there any reason to use one tense over the other with this verb (and others like it such as 出動, as in軍隊が出動する)? Based on the following sample sentences from my Apple dictionary, they seem ...