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80

は and が are a bit complex because they have several meanings, and some of the shades of meaning of wa and ga are a bit hard to distinguish casually. The best coverage of this that I have read is "The Structure of the Japanese Language" by Susumu Kuno(written in English). I'm going to attempt to synthesize some of that here, but Kuno's explanation is much ...


33

This is really no different than the normal use of the scope/topic particle は, except that with には (and では, とは, and any other combination), the scope of the sentence expands to include the particle itself. (I will use "scope" to mean "topic" here; personally I prefer the former, but most people are used to the latter.) The example sentences you chose might ...


17

Disclaimer: I'm just a random Japanese native and my answer below isn't based on formal research or anything like that. The feminine 「わ」 seems to have become almost extinct. You see it in text books and novels, but it's extremely rare to hear people actually using it. The kansai 「わ」 is different from the feminine 「わ」. The feminine 「わ」 is used in 標準語 or ...


16

お仕事は? Oshigoto wa? is basically short for お仕事は何ですか? Oshigoto wa nan desu ka? あなたは仕事ですか? Anata wa shigoto desu ka? means "Are you work?" and is nonsensical†. は wa (not わ BTW) is the topic marker.* Just asking 〜は basically means "About ~..." and only hints at the actual question. Leaving things unspoken is a very typical thing in Japanese. "About (your) ...


16

When being used as a grammatical particle ([助詞]{じょし}), は is pronounced わ (wa), を is pronounced お (o), and へ (which you may not have come across yet) is pronounced え (e). I've never used Rosetta Stone but it seems quite strange that it would not mention this... Information as to the historical reason for this difference between spelling and pronunciation ...


16

ハ for the topic particle. There's no difference from hiragana.


15

This construct was common in classical Japanese, but now it is archaic or poetic. In classical Japanese, the attributive form of conjugating words can be directly followed by particles which attach to nouns (without inserting の). 目指すは would become 目指すのは in modern Japanese, 吹きやまぬは would become 吹きやまぬのは or 吹きやまないのは, and so on.


15

If you already speak a little Japanese, compare these: Aiko-chan ga suki desu I like (love) Aiko. Aiko-chan wa suki desu Aiko likes it. I read a lot about this, theory about subjects and objects, but for some reason, this simple example (heard once I'd had a few months in Japan) most helped me to "get it".


12

In my opinion, it is a bit of a mistake to think of は as being in opposition to が. There are times where は marks things that have nothing to do with the subject of the sentence. There are times where you have to choose between は and を for example. 今はどうしようかな? = What should I do now? Sometimes the は will be left off, but が could never be used here because ...


12

To answer that, I think we first have to look at one of the more important roles of topic markers (in any language that has them): marking contrast. The topic marker as a marker of contrast Look at this conversation for instance: A: 一番好きな中華料理か? たぶん麻婆豆腐だと思う。 My favorite Chinese dish? Probably Mapo Doufu, I guess. B: そうか。俺はちょっと辛いのが苦手なんだ。 I ...


11

As ssb and fefe wrote, the sentence consists of two clauses which share the main verb あります. In this particular case, it would be easier to read if the author put a 読点 (“、”) in the sentence: 白い箱はカウチの上に、緑のランプは机の上にあります。 However, unlike commas in English, 読点 in Japanese is rarely (if ever) grammatically required. Authors are free to use 読点 wherever they ...


10

As others have said, this is probably really ~やしない, which is transmutation of ~はしない. What this suffix does is usually one of two things: It makes the verb a topic (with は) and then negate it. This is used to bring up the event described by the verb and then saying it won't happen (or isn't happening, have never happened - you get the point). From the ...


10

Often the particle は is written "wa" in Latin letters, because は, when used as a particle, is in fact pronounced the same as わ. Of course, は, when it is not a particle, is usually pronounced "ha". を is pronounced お, and therefore sometimes transcribed "wo" and sometimes "o". Similarly, the particle へ is pronounced the same as え, whence "he" or "e". For ...


10

I would have no choice but to say that there is a difference. Little particles do have that kind of power and influence over much bigger words than themselves. You would sound like you are a little more satisfied with your job if you said 「[今]{いま}の[仕事]{しごと}は[悪]{わる}くないです。」 than when you said 「今の仕事は悪くはないです。」. This is a prime example of the contrastive は. ...


9

The basic answer is that は is written ハ in katakana. However, I think it depends on why it's written in katakana. One reason you might write something in katakana is to communicate pronunciation, and in this case the particle は would be written ワ: spelling pronunciation おはよう オハヨー こんにちは コンニチワ You can see this sort of use of ...


8

わ can also have a non-feminine meaning of: 軽{かる}い詠嘆{えいたん}や驚{おどろ}きなどの気持{きも}ちを表{あらわ}す。 - Expresses mild feelings of admiration, surprise, etc. So the idea here is to express that lovely "oh!" feeling you get when your ears pop, as you can see by his smile. I can't honestly say how prevalent this is, or if you ought to use it.


8

You are asking what や in 大きすぎやしないか is. I think that it is a colloquial deformation of は, as is explained in this entry in Daijirin. According to this explanation, it was originally 大きすぎはしないか, in which particle は was used to emphasize the part 大きすぎ. When attached to certain verbs, it is often further contracted as in わかりやしない → わかりゃしない, 聞きやしない → 聞きゃしない. ...


8

You can see it's ハ as in an old MS office assistant dialog box You can also see the usage of ヲ in the above sentence


7

It depends not only on the verb, but on the form of the verb. The general rule is that static verbs and adjectives take "ga" and "action verbs" take "o" on the direct object. piano-o hiku play the piano piano-ga hikeru can play the piano Here, playing the piano is an action, thus "o" is used. Being able to play the piano is a state, thus "ga" ...


7

Particles have multiple uses or meanings. が can be used to mark the subject. However 好き【すき】 is an adjective not a verb. In this case が marks the target of 好き【すき】 which is cats. 1) 私は猫が好き 2) 猫は私が好き The pattern of these sentences is: Topic は target of adjective が adjective I(topic) like(adjective) cats(target of adjective). Cats(topic) ...


7

せん(=せぬ) is the classical version of しない, 'do not'. せ = the imperfective form (未然形) of the verb す, 'do' (す = classical version of する) ん = the negative auxiliary ぬ << derived from the classical negative ず 殺しはせん(連用形「殺し」 + particle は(= here it can be like 'at least') + verb せ + negative ん) is the classical way of saying 殺しはしない, 'I'm not killing / I'm ...


7

The sequence 体は小さいけれど元気な serves as an adjectival block which modifies [一寸法師]{いっすんぼうし}. 体は小さいけれど元気な一寸法師 is object of the verb 気に入り, in turn. [大臣]{だいじん}(は) is its subject. So, the whole sentence has kind of a nested structure, and the two は belong to different levels respectively.


7

Think about it this way. When you have a verb, it has certain 'slots' that have to be filled with nouns. 食べる, being a transitive verb, has two slots - subject and object. である also has two slots (though it's not a transitive verb, it's a special kind of thing) - subject and predicate. We've got three nouns here (これ, 本 and 犬), and we need to figure out how ...



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