2

That is, why does adding the 「も」 particle to question words give it a universal, for lack of a better term, word. It's not even always required to be there, as in sentences like

お好み焼きが何よりいい
Okonomiyaki is better than anything

which is just as correct as using 「よりも」 as far as I'm aware.

2

I believe this is related to one of the meanings of も.

も - prt. A marker which indicates emphasis.

It's used in sentences like:

私は漢字を一つも知らない。

I don't even know 1 kanji.

This can be used the same way with 何:

何も知らない、ジョン・スノウ。

(lit.) You don't even know [one] thing, Jon Snow.

You don't know anything, Jon Snow.

In this sense it doesn't quite make it a universal word. It just happens that "even one thing" coincides with the more natural translation "anything".


To address the use of よりも, the も is the same emphasis marker. When combined with より it emphasizes the speaker's opinion that there really is nothing better than Okonomiyaki.

  • This grammar is exactly why there is a cell phone company named DOKOMO. It implies that their cell coverage works anywhere. – ajsmart Jun 2 '17 at 14:27
  • @ajsmart Huh I never knew that. They do seem to have the best coverage. – landonepps Jun 5 '17 at 2:33

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