I am practicing the ば-conditional and my main reference right now is the oxford grammar book. It only mentions how to convert keiyoushi or i-adjectives and not keiyoudoushi or na-adjectives.

Can someone please break down how the various verb forms and adjectives conjugate into this conditional?

  • Thanks for the answers so how do these conjugate in a negative form?
    – Myeong
    Jan 6, 2012 at 6:53
  • Note that negative forms are expressed by attaching the negative i-adjective ない to the predicate. So the negative ば-form would follow the i-adjective pattern.
    – user458
    Jan 6, 2012 at 7:20
  • How do i accept? i am new to this!
    – Myeong
    Jan 14, 2012 at 5:02

2 Answers 2


The form used with "ば" to show condition is called "仮定形".

This wiki article gives a good description of this form (the "口語" part. The "文語" part is for classic Japanese). I will copy the part used for modern Japanese here:

品詞   活用の種類    例語    語形
動詞   五段活用      書く    かけ      -e
      下一段活用    受ける   うけれ    -eれ
      上一段活用    起きる   おきれ    -iれ
      カ行変格活用   来る    くれ      -uれ
      サ行変格活用  する    すれ      -uれ
形容詞             ない    なけれ     けれ
形容動詞           静かだ   しずかなら  なら

In general, for verbs, the last kana changes to え-dan(え段). For Na-adjectives, the ending changes to "なら".

As to Nouns, they do not conjugate itself. The verb used after the noun conjugate. For example, "先生である" -> "先生であれ(ば)". The verb "である" conjugate to "であれ".

  • It's not your fault, but traditional grammar (橋本文法) is a mess.
    – user458
    Jan 6, 2012 at 2:33

For nouns and adjectival nouns (形容動詞), the ば conditional is formed by attaching the appropriate form of the copula, e.g. ならば for だ, or であれば for である. However, ならば is not frequently used, and the usual form is なら.

For so-called consonant stem verbs (五段活用動詞), the ば conditional is formed by attaching -eba to the stem, and for the vowel stem verbs (一段活用動詞), we attach -reba. For the irregular verbs we have:

  • する → すれば
  • くる → くれば

Finally, the adjectives (形容詞) form their ば conditional by attaching -kereba to the stem.

(In the traditional analysis, these are all explained by the rule of attaching ば to the conditional stem (仮定形). Some of the other conditionals are, morphologically speaking, special cases of this.)

  • (1) あれば (the copula) is a consonant verb. (2) You can say that する and くる behave like a consonant verb. (3) i-adjective also appears with the consonant verb ある as く(も)あれば, but undergoes obligatory contraction when and あれば are adjacent: ku ar-eba → kereba. So you can simply mention the two forms -eba and -reba, and the only irregular one is ならば, and the contraction rule.
    – user458
    Jan 6, 2012 at 2:23

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