I saw a rather interesting sentence:


In particular, the use of “客は兄様しか” interests me as the “〜は” does not seem to be contrastive and “客は” comes before “兄様しか”, seemingly giving “取る” two objects. So is “客を兄様しか” also grammatically possible here, and if not, what kind of grammatical role exactly does this “客は” here fulfill and could it then be replaced by “〜が” perhaps?

  • 〜を possible, 〜が not. Commented Mar 30 at 14:33
  • 5
    – chocolate
    Commented Mar 30 at 17:51
  • 1
    It might help to see 〜しか as adverbially modifying a negative predicate. This is kind of related: japanese.stackexchange.com/q/100242/43676
    – aguijonazo
    Commented Mar 30 at 22:51

1 Answer 1


Yes, I think this 客は can be put back into the predicate as 客を (and not が), though an argument followed by は is not always warranted to have grammatical relation with the predicate (topic-comment structure), as you may know.

“客は” comes before “兄様しか”, seemingly giving “取る” two objects.

I am not very sure where your confusion is exactly located, but in a sentence like "He knows everyone except me.", know is not taking two objects at once, because me is on a side branch connected by except. しか is not a case particle like が/を; it is one of 取り立て助詞 (focus particles) for topical operations, akin to は and も, thus also hides case particles が, を, and optionally に underneath, that might obscure its grammatical role.

= was not receiving patrons except (my?) brother

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