I know that the である style of writing is used as a somewhat-formal stylistic choice, often in editorials, and in rare cases, in particular styles of speeches. I remember being taught at some point, though, that when writing in である form it is necessary to still use だ as a sentence ender in some situations, but I can't recall what those situations were.

Is this the case and if so, when is it necessary to use だ when writing in である form?

  • I've never heard it.
    – user4092
    Sep 14 '14 at 13:48
  • I may have a worksheet lying around somewhere about that...
    – virmaior
    Sep 15 '14 at 3:00

The question sounds a little vague, so my answer may or may not contain what you wanted to know.

Whether it is the である/だ or です/ます style that you are writing in, you should NOT end every sentence with the same word(s). Otherwise, your writing would sound monotonous and boring.

In the case of である and だ, there is a difference in nuance between the two; therefore you actually have more reason to use both -- namely, clarity -- than just avoiding monotonousness and boringness.

「だ」 tends to sound slightly more intuitive, more subjective and more dogmatic than 「である」. Depending on the statement you are making, one of the two sentence-enders would generally sound more suitable.

This does not apply to the です/ます style of writing because there is no difference in nuance (let alone, meaning) between です and ます. The choice is automatic and is not left with the author. It all has to do with what [品詞]{ひんし} (= "part of speech") directly precedes the sentence-ender.

  • 1
    I assume there may have been a reason you didn't include any, but I would personally find some contrasting examples of statements that suggest 「だ」 vs statements that suggest 「である」 to be enlightening. Sep 17 '14 at 2:48

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