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Just copied & pasted from my half-year-old answer (though the question itself isn't a duplicate): Though I translated 日本語を話す into "speak Japanese", the verb doesn't have "be able to speak" sense, so every time you have to explicitly use potential form when you question about ability. 日本語が話せますか? Do you speak Japanese? compared ...


「謝{あやま}んなくったっていいんだよ。」 Needless to say, this is colloquial speech which uses what I call the "two distinct hallmarks" of colloquial speech -- 「ん」 and the small 「っ」. Now, watch the hallmarks disappear instantly as I put the phrase into the "dictionary" form. 「謝らなくてもいいのですよ」 In Kanto (and even a larger area because of TV), 「ら」 often changes to 「ん」 in ...


It appears that 「ない」 conjugates onto the 連用形{れんようけい} (~~く) form of i-adjectives instead of the 未然形{みぜんけい} (~~かろ) form, as it does with verbs. Is this correct? Yes, it is correct. As a Japanese-learner, I suppose you would just have to memorize the rule in forming the negative forms. Keep making mistakes and eventually, only the correct forms will ...


【帰る】 is the plain form. 【帰れる】 is the potential form, so to express that you can go back.


私は少し日本語を話します。 I will speak a little Japanese. (starting now) 私は少し日本語を話せます。 I can speak a little Japanese. (the ability to speak) On a side note, a quick grammar fix (leaving word order as is) 私は少し日本語が話せます。


Passing judgement about your own Japanese skills while talking with a Japanese native speaker is a little strange. I'd recommend: "日本語{にほんご}ができるようになっている気{き}がしています。" (1) "気{き}がしています" adds the meaning that your opinion about your Japanese skills is yours alone. (2) The present continuous tense "~~になっている" adds the meaning that you think that you are on the ...

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