That class of words which describe events and states and can be inflected or conjugated to indicate relative time, as well as many other nuances.

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4
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2answers
194 views

Difference between 勝つ and 勝てる?

What is the difference between 勝つ and 勝てる ? Also, how do I use these two different forms with ために and ように? Thank you.
5
votes
1answer
227 views

What's the grammatical breakdown of “知りもしないわ”?

Can you do this with any verb? e.g."食べもしないわ" Also what's the meaning of "わ" at the of verbs like "壊すわ"?
4
votes
1answer
138 views

Can I get a grammatical breakdown of “通りゃんせ”?

So, I recently learned that there's this song called 「通りゃんせ」, which I guess would be familiar to all of you who have lived in Japan. The grammatical form "通りゃんせ" (and later in the song, ...
0
votes
1answer
176 views

Did ある and いる once have kanji?

I'm surprised I haven't been able to turn up anything, but I'm sure you'll notify me if there's a dupe I missed. Did the verbs ある and いる ever have kanji? I recognise that it won't be in use today.
2
votes
2answers
74 views

interpretation of 玉を落とす in this sentence

どうせ何【なん】かの玉【たま】を落【お】とすのは分【わ】かり切【き】ってる This sentence uses 玉を落とす in a way that makes me think that 玉 is a noun being modified by を落とす to mean something like 'a ball intended to be dropped', in ...
45
votes
10answers
2k views

How should I choose between [知]{し}る and わかる?

Both 知る and わかる get used for "know", "understand", "learn", "find out", and various other concepts. How do you know which to use when? Are there any rules to help you decide? Additionally, both of ...
2
votes
1answer
103 views

新しい 机 を 買って もらいました。“They bought me a new desk” or “I bought and received a new desk”?

Ok, so I was studying some Japanese phrases when this showed up: 新しい 机 を 買って もらいました。 The translation provided in the source material is: "They bought me a new desk" What I don't understand, however, ...
4
votes
2answers
153 views

What's the difference between ~れれば and ~れば?

別に僕は周りを無視して本に没頭したいわけでもないので、見ろと言われれば見る Would it mean the same thing if 言われれば was replaced with 言われば? What's the difference if any between ~れれば and ~れば? I'm also not certain of the meaning of the ...
9
votes
1answer
512 views

「かしこまる」と言う自動詞について / About the verb “kashikomaru”

皆さんこんにちは、 日本語で質問がお聞きしてみたいのですが、言葉や文法を間違えたらお許しください。 では、「かしこまりました」とは誰かに命令や注文を頼まれた場合などの返事とすることもよくありますが、「かしこまる」と言う自動詞がこの表現以外で使われる場合はありますか? "kashikomarimashita" is usually used as a response to somebody's ...
1
vote
1answer
65 views

やり as a prefix - clarification please

I have the following title: やり終えたことはチェックしておこう! which I think is roughly saying there is a that in advance of finishing there is a checklist (can anybody help with the literal translation?). My ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

How to convert verbs from polite form to dictionary form?

Does anyone have a good rule for converting to dictionary (u)form from masu form regarding the different verb groups? Most websites start with dictionary and go to masu but I learned starting with ...
8
votes
2answers
256 views

What is the difference between 思【おも】い付【つ】く and 思【おも】い浮【う】かぶ?

The words 思い付く and 思い浮かぶ both mean something along the lines of "to come to mind". But I'm not actually sure about the details of when to use one versus the other. Yet, at the same time, they don't ...
6
votes
1answer
138 views

Two-verb compounds: 振る舞う: plain-form + plain-form verb instead of masu-form + plain form?

I finished Core 10000 (an Anki deck) and 振る舞う (to entertain) was one of the last ones to pop up. I find it interesting because to me it appears to be a combination of plain form 振る (to shake) + ...
1
vote
1answer
104 views

When does one use 〜もらいました versus 〜くれました? [duplicate]

I know that when giving something, you can say 父に傘を貸してあげました - there's only one word for when giving. But when receiving something, it's either 〜もらいました or 〜くれました. It's my understanding that, when the ...
6
votes
1answer
220 views

“Irregular” 命令形 of some verbs

Recently I've noticed several verbs where the imperative form is used in a way that is not the "correct" conjugation. くれる → くれ! → The one we're all used to つける → つけ! → An example from my ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

Differentiating honorific passive and potential conjugations of 出る

Given the following sentence structure, I am wondering how one differentiates the usage of 出る in the following. 明日のパーティーに出られますか? The usage of the partial に and the られる suggests a honorific ...
3
votes
2answers
333 views

How to say “had been [verbing]”?

In this excellent response by @DariusJahandarie , he covered how to say "I have been [verbing]" in Japanese by using ている. He had given many examples of how would could potentially translate ている or てい ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

What is the difference between 見える【みえる】/聞こえる【きこえる】 and 見られる【みられる】/聞ける【きける】?

In Japanese, there is a potential form to express that it's possible for something to be done. My own examples of potential form: 辛【から】い食【た】べ物【もの】が食【た】べられる。 (I can eat spicy foods.) ...
3
votes
2answers
931 views

How to parse ~なくたって?

I've been running into verbs such as 言わなくたって recently. I found these sentences using a sample sentence search and it seems to be a stronger form of ~なくても 見てなくたっていいよ。 You don't have to stand ...
0
votes
1answer
132 views

I don't understand the meaning and “naran” in this sentence 早く日曜日にならんかな

I don't understand the meaning of ならん in this sentence: 早く日曜日にならんかな Does ならん come from ならぶ? Or come from なる? How it's conjugated? What's that ん in ならん...?
2
votes
1answer
130 views

使ってみなさい, and 使っても意味のない場所

After a brief hiatus I'm getting back into my Japanese study. I've hit a roadblock straight away ;-) I am having trouble with the use of '使ってみなさい' here. I don't think I've seen it before. -なさい means ...
4
votes
3answers
568 views

What's the difference between “plain form + とき” and “ta-form + とき“?

According to the book I'm reading, both of these sentences translate to: “I bought a bag when I went back to my country”. 国へ帰るとき、かばんを買いました。 国へ帰ったとき、かばんを買いました。 Now the nuance, if I understand ...
3
votes
4answers
737 views

What's the difference between ~てある and ~た (past form)?

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 ...
15
votes
2answers
617 views

“太ってる猫” vs “太った猫”

I saw this sentence and its translation in a textbook 彼女は太った猫が好きじゃない。 She doesn't like fat cats I was under the impression that 「太ってる猫」 means something like “cat that is in the state of ...
2
votes
1answer
175 views

Can ~もの be applied to all verbs to make them a noun?

I understand that ~もの converts the verb into a noun. So たべます meaning "to eat" becomes たべもの meaning "food". Can ~もの be applied to all verbs? eg. ききます meaning "to listen" becomes ききもの meaning "music"?
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votes
1answer
57 views

How is “if one does not differ” translated using the word 異なる and the ば-ending?

異なる is the dictionary form. To express the idea of condition, one has to change the u into an e and add the suffix ba. 異なれば = If one differs. How do you express the idea of a negative condition -> ...
3
votes
2answers
253 views

Verb + うる form. What is this?

Can't really understand this form: I've seen already this form with 考える and translated it like this: 考えうることだ - conceivable (possible) However how do you translate with other verbs? is this ...
3
votes
1answer
98 views

いる connected to a proposition?

I'm stuck with the construction of 居る/いる in the following sentence (Botchan, I) 小学校【しょうがっこう】に居【い】る時分【じぶん】学校【がっこう】の二階【にかい】から飛【と】び降【お】りて一週間【いっしゅうかん】ほど腰【こし】を抜【ぬ】かした事【こと】がある。 My translation (excuse ...
10
votes
3answers
774 views

Are there more irregular verbs like 行く?

I thought when you have a consonant-stem verb ending with -ku you replace it with -ita. For example kaku ("to write") becomes kaita. But this doesn't happen with iku, which becomes itta, so I guess ...
3
votes
1answer
125 views

In “[Vます stem] + し+ [noun]” what does し mean? [duplicate]

I've seen this in multiple combinations, but the one I was specifically looking at was: 「背負いし者」 ...from 「宿命を背負いし者」. Similarly, 「かつて来たりし者」 Scouring through all my grammar books, I can't ...
6
votes
2answers
171 views

What is 「たもうた」 in 「 神の創りたもうた世界」?

I'd like to know what is the suffix たもうた used in the example phrase 「 神の創りたもうた世界」. I've found several more occurrences of it and it seem to work like some honorific equivalent of くださる used in ...
2
votes
1answer
166 views

When should I use a verb stem by itself?

I was recently listening to the Hunter x Hunter anime, and during a conversation, a passing character that the protagonist meets states, 頑張って、いいハンターになりな This struck me as a bit odd, as I ...
3
votes
3answers
424 views

How do I interpret the Japanese construction of verb+noun?

A) Let's take just transitive verbs first: 食べる人 食べられる人 B) Now let's take intransitive verbs: 起きる人 起きられる人 起こす人 起こされる人 OK, this thing has confused me for a very long time now, like really long. ...
3
votes
1answer
114 views

difference between 持ち込む and 持って来る?

Looking at examples on weblio, it looks like maybe 持ち込む is more for things and 持ってくる is for bringing people along with you, etc?
3
votes
1answer
146 views

what is the difference between 送る and 贈る?

I noticed that both are pronounced the same way and that both have approximately the same meaning "to send". Is there a slight nuance in the usage of both of these versions of "to send"? I'm thinking ...
3
votes
1answer
147 views

Need help parsing combined forms of a verb

I came across this verb: 捕【と】らえられていた It could have been pretty much any verb really. I tried to parse the different forms the verb has been assigned. Here's my process: 捕【と】らえる - (Transitive ...
9
votes
2answers
298 views

~て vs ~てから for sequencing activities

This is potentially much simpler than I'm expecting but when simply ordering events within a sequence are there any contextual differences between using ~て and ~てから? For example, if I was talking ...
2
votes
1answer
75 views

Verb used for “being in a class”

I'm new to Japanese language. I was looking for a way to ask "what class are you in?" or similar (not sure if that's the right way to translate it to Japanese, but the idea is to ask him what class is ...
8
votes
2answers
360 views

Why are the verb classes called ichidan and godan?

Is there a particular reason why verbs are classified as "class 1" verbs (一段動詞) and "class 5" verbs (五段動詞)? Where did class 2 to 4 go? Do or did they exist at all, and why (not)? Thanks!
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Is 「たくなった」 a typo or a grammatical structure that is different than I think it is?

I have this sentence in my JLPT exercise book: 彼{かれ}は有名人{ゆうめいじん}ゆえの不自由{ふじゆう}さから逃{に}げたくなった。 The translation offered is: He wanted to get away from the difficulties of being a celebrity. ...
2
votes
1answer
274 views

What is Vて+た construction?

I came across Vて+た construction in a song I've been listening to: あなたのその瞳をただ見つめてた Can someone explain what it means? I've tried looking for it in some grammar books but unfortunately I couldn't ...
1
vote
0answers
71 views

Origin of on-yomi + じる verbs? [duplicate]

I have noticed there are some verbs which consist of the on reading of a kanji followed by じる: 信じる 感じる 通じる It's obviously unusual for a (non-する) verb to use on-yomi like this. My questions: Are ...
0
votes
1answer
131 views

Understanding かなでたり

I was reading a page (http://kids.goo.ne.jp/shirabemono/detail.html?id=153), but I couldn't understand this phrase: 音楽は、音をきいたりかなでたりして楽しむものだね。 I understand the "tari form" (or whatever it is ...
1
vote
1answer
145 views

Can you construct a future-continuous verb tense?

I wanted to say "I'll be logged into Skype every night." So, I said 「毎夜、Skypeと つながっている つもりです。」 But now I am thinking maybe the verb tense should have been 「毎夜、Skypeと つながる つもりです。」 My sense is that「 ...
2
votes
3answers
495 views

~ておく / とく for preparation (Conjugation and nuance)

A few quick questions regarding ~ておく and the casual form ~とく Firstly, when changing from ~ておく to the more casual ~とく I'm assuming the verb is first conjugated to the ~て form then the ~て is dropped ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

How to say “you may not [verb] here”?

たとえば、おすしを食べてもいいですか? is for "May I eat sushi?". However I know that ちょっと、食べなくてもいいです。Is not the right phrase because that means: "Well, you don't have to eat (that)." So what is the response for ...
3
votes
1answer
215 views

Causative form + te form + another verb construction

In this specific case: 取らせて頂いた So, what's the meaning of such a construction? I understand what each thing does alone (the causative form, the te form and the verb in past indicative), But what ...
5
votes
2answers
226 views

と言います vs.と言われています

I'm playing The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past(ゼルダの伝説:神々のトライフォース)and this sentence came up (spoken by one of the 7 maidens): ハイリアの民は、ふしぎな力を あやつることが、できたと言います。 I think this means "It is ...
3
votes
2answers
175 views

「思っているようです。」or 「思っている。」 for describing another person's opinion

As explained in the thread Difference between そうです、 ようです and らしいです., when describing what you think are the thoughts of another person, might 「思っているようです。」 be more appropriate than 「思っている。」? (1) ...
8
votes
1answer
132 views

Can the volitional form be used when the speaker is not intending to do the action themselves?

From what I understand the volitional form is often used to mean "let's do" something, e.g. 行こう can mean "let's go". Can this form be use when the speaker themself is not going to perform the action? ...