I can't figure-out why certain words are categorized as サ変接続 such as


All those words are definitely サ変名詞. So, what do those words have that also make them サ変接続? What would be some words that are exclusively サ変接続 and not also サ変名詞?

Perhaps is サ変名詞 really just short-hand for a word that can be (名詞 + サ変接続)?

I am using the Kuromoji Japanese tokenizer. Part of the metadata for a word/token is the part of speech. Here is a snippet of output from tokenizing a newspaper article. I decided to display the reading and part of speech:

発表 --> ハッピョウ --> 名詞,サ変接続,,
など --> ナド --> 助詞,副助詞,,
新 --> シン --> 接頭詞,名詞接続,,
機能 --> キノウ --> 名詞,サ変接続,,
を --> ヲ --> 助詞,格助詞,一般,*
導入 --> ドウニュウ --> 名詞,サ変接続,,
仮想 --> カソウ --> 名詞,サ変接続,,
現実 --> ゲンジツ --> 名詞,一般,,
ヘッド --> ヘッド --> 名詞,一般,,

Actually... I just noticed I mistakenly said 'サ変接続詞' instead of just 'サ変接続'. Even so, サ変名詞 seem to act just like サ変接続?

  • Categorized as サ変接続詞 where exactly? Please tell us where you found this categorization.
    – user1478
    Commented Dec 17, 2016 at 16:46
  • @snailplane I clarified in the notes. thanks. Commented Dec 17, 2016 at 16:58
  • 3
    Parts of speech in computational linguistics / natural language processing are often very different from the parts of speech used in normal grammar, because they have a different purpose. To illustrate this point: English is often analyzed as having 9 or so parts of speech by descriptive linguists, but CLAWS7 (used with major corpora such as BNC and COCA) has 137 parts of speech, while Penn Treebank has 36 parts of speech. The correct explanation here will depend on Kuromoji's tag set.
    – user1478
    Commented Dec 17, 2016 at 17:14

1 Answer 1


I think that you are overthinking things here.

Simply put:

サ変名詞{へんめいし} = サ変接続{へんせつぞく}する名詞{めいし}

サ変名詞 refers to a noun that can function as a verb by attaching the verb 「する」 to it.

The three nouns that you listed (発表、機能 and 仮想) are good examples of サ変名詞. They all become verbs just by adding 「する」 at the end.

Note that サ変名詞 include MANY katakana words such as アピール、デート、エンジョイ、リラックス、コーディネート, etc. That some of those are already verbs in their original language is completely irrelevant here because we are discussing Japanese, not English.

(The learners should note that if you have to add 「する」 to form verbs out of nouns, those nouns would have to be loan words most of the time in the first place. Loan words, of course, include those borrowed from Chinese. Original Japanese verbs are already in verb forms without adding 「する」 or anything, are they not? Think of みる、いく、たべる、かく、うごく, etc.)

As you know, every conjugated form of 「する」 starts with a サ行{ぎょう}-syllable -- しない、しよう、せず、させる、される、すれば、しろ、せよ. This is what 「サ変{へん}」 means -- the changes (in the first syllables) within the サ行 in the conjugations of 「する」.

Thus, サ変接続 simply refers to the connecting of a noun to a form of 「する」.

サ変名詞 is a noun that becomes a verb by サ変接続.

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