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「この花瓶は高くはあるが、それだけの値打ちはある」

I was studying with the "Dictionary of Japanese Grammar" and the above sentence appeared. I am curious about the meaning of the locution in bold and the difference it has with 「高い」.

Thank you for your time and sorry if this kind of question has been asked before, but I haven't found it.

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This 「は」 is used for emphasis and in the sentence in question, it is emphasizing the fact that the vase is indeed rather expensive.

It is used in the forms of:

1) [連用形]{れんようけい} of a verb or i-adjective + 「は」 + 「ある/ない/いる/いない, etc.」

and

2) Particle て or で + 「は」 + 「ある/ない/いる/いない, etc.」

「この[花瓶]{かびん}は[高]{たか}くはあるが、それだけの[値打]{ねう}ちはある。」, therefore, means 95% (or even more) the same as:

「この花瓶は高いが、それだけの値打ちはある。」

The 5% difference is that the former places more emphasis on the monetary value of the vase than the latter and it sounds more eloquent using the 「は」.

 

  • Hi kind of an old post, but I'm curious about the form you mentioned (renyoukei + wa + auxiliary). Do you have any extra reading material on the matter by any chance? – xTCx Aug 20 '17 at 12:58

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