I read in the Asahi Shimbun the following article's headline (furigana are mine) :

神様{かみさま}も楽{たの}しむ? 桜{さくら}の新{しん}品種{ひんしゅ}、京都{きょうと}で発見{はっけん} 北野天満宮{きたのてんまんぐう}

my translation :

Do the gods enjoy themselves ? A new variety of cherry tree discovered in Kyōto (Kitano Tenman-gū)

I understand the meaning of 楽{たの}しむ used transitively; e.g. (source) :


I enjoyed swimming.

But what about 楽{たの}しむ used intransitively ? What's the exact meaning of "神様{かみさま}も楽{たの}しむ?" ? Is it :

  • the gods are in a good mood ?
  • the gods are amusing themselves ?
  • the gods want to make a joke ?

Any help would be appreciated !

  • 1
    Bear in mind that, in the context of Japan, 神様{かみさま} likely refers to the Japanese kami (i.e. plural) and not to the Christian God (i.e. singular). Apr 11, 2016 at 16:44
  • @EiríkrÚtlendi : of course, you're right. I have fixed my translation.
    – suizokukan
    Apr 11, 2016 at 17:17

1 Answer 1


I think the 神様も楽しむ in the headline means:

神様も桜を楽しむ(のか)? -- The gods enjoy cherry blossoms, too?
神様も桜を見て楽しむ(のか)? -- The gods enjoy seeing cherry blossoms, too?

with 桜を(見て) being left out.

I believe 楽しむ can be used intransitively, as in:

テレビを見て楽しみました。 (←more natural than テレビを見ることを楽しみました。)

  • Thank you very much : your examples are interesting. Thanks too for correcting the reading of 新品種.
    – suizokukan
    Apr 11, 2016 at 12:57

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .