I was just thinking about the sunburn I will get during the upcoming 4th of July holiday. Then, I wondered if 「日焼{ひや}け」is a verb nominalization. If it is, I am not aware of such a pattern.

Is it an ad-hoc conglomeration of the idea of "sun", "skin", and "burn"?
「日は焼ける」// make the object implicit
「日焼ける」// drop the article
「日焼け」// drop the trailing "る"

Or, is this representative of a certain verb nominalization process that can be used to nominalize other verbs?

  • 1
    「日に焼ける」こと→「日焼け」、「炭火で焼く」こと→「炭火焼き」、「山に登る」こと→「山登り」 とか・・・
    – user1016
    Jul 2 '14 at 19:31
  • 5
    ??? I didn't say 日焼き. I said 日焼け.
    – user1016
    Jul 2 '14 at 19:39
  • 4
    焼ける is intransitive and 焼け is its noun form. And 焼く is transitive and 焼き is its noun form.
    – user1016
    Jul 2 '14 at 19:42
  • 1
    There are lots of examples: 人を殺す → 人殺し, for instance.
    – user1478
    Jul 2 '14 at 20:19
  • 1
    焼ける is actually intransitive as @Choko pointed out. 日焼け is formed by nominalizing 焼ける. To nominalize a verb you can use the stem form which is derived from the ます form of the verb, e.g. [stem]+ます. I believe you are correct that using nominalized transitive verbs without an object is not too common.
    – SheepMan
    Jul 2 '14 at 20:52

This is a common pattern of taking a noun + particle + verb combination and shortening the verb to it's stem form:

As Choko points out in her comment to your question:

日に焼ける drops the particle に and changes 焼ける into the stem 焼け => 日焼け

炭火で焼く drops the particle で and changes 焼く into the stem 焼き => 炭火焼き

家で飲む drops the particle で and changes 飲む into the stem 飲み => 家飲み

花を見る drops the particle を and changes 見る into the stem 見 => 花見

道を行く drops the particle を and changes 行く into the stem 行き => 道行き

There are similar phrases that aren't created exactly in this way, but similarly. For example:


And others that have more nuanced meanings

裏行き does not just mean 裏で行く but references a distance.

So it's not a fast rule, but holds in many cases.

  • whoo. I think I see it. I did not see this with transitive verbs.
    – user312440
    Jul 2 '14 at 20:06
  • I like the "家飲み" the best. It drops the object then nominalizes like "日焼け". thank you very much.
    – user312440
    Jul 2 '14 at 20:31

These are (deverbal) noun-noun compounds:

  1. The first noun is either an adjunct to or an argument of the verb.
  2. The second noun is a deverbal form of a verb—specifically, its 連用形 ("continuative form"), a verb form used as a noun.

When the nouns are put together, rendaku ("sequential voicing") sometimes occurs:

  1. If the first noun is an adjunct, rendaku usually applies (96% of the time, if possible).

  2. If the first noun is an argument, rendaku sometimes applies (44% of the time, if possible).

The numbers above are from Kyoko Yamaguchi's paper Accentedness and Rendaku in Japanese Deverbal Compounds (2011), which discusses this topic in more detail.

Some examples from Tsujimura's Introduction to Japanese Linguistics to illustrate the difference:

 絵描く → 絵描き(えき)   絵 is an argument
 手書く → 手書き(てき)   手 is an adjunct, rendaku occurs

 物干す → 物干し(ものし)  物 is an argument
 陰干す → 陰干し(かげし)  陰 is an adjunct, rendaku occurs

 魚釣る → 魚釣り(さかなり) 魚 is an argument
 磯釣る → 磯釣り(いそり)  磯 is an adjunct, rendaku occurs

Voicing happens with arguments as well, but less than half of the time:

 人買う → 人買い(ひとい)  人 is an argument
 人殺す → 人殺し(ひとろし) 人 is an argument, rendaku occurs anyway

Deverbal compounds of this sort are quite common in Japanese.

  • 1
    Good to know the linguistic terminology behind this.
    – SheepMan
    Jul 3 '14 at 14:12

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