Can someone please explain the fine nuances of these two? Things such as:

  • Are there conditions/restrictions of when you can use one or the other?
  • What are the "approximate" time periods that each covers?
  • Anything else relevant...

Here's an example I saw on a particular website.

  • 最近Xの機能を使ってきたみたい、ね! → What it actually said
  • 最近Xの機能を使うようになったみたい、ね! → What I thought it should have said
  • 2
    I agree with you; 最近Xの機能を使ってきた sounds incorrect to me. 最近Xの機能を使うようになった is fine. – Tsuyoshi Ito May 13 '12 at 23:51
  • @istrasci: Out of context, it's difficult to explain the fine nuances. – Jesse Good May 14 '12 at 3:12

It depends on the aspectuality (or more specifically, telicity) of the predicate.

  • With telic predicates like 現れる, 染まる, the event described involves a change of state. There is a change within the event before and after this point. With such predicates, various forms have the meanings such as the following:

現れている (perfect)
現れてくる (gradually 現れる towards the point of view of the first person)
現れていく (gradually 現れる apart from the point of view of the first person)
* 現れるようになる (ungrammatical)

  • With atelic predicates like 使う, 走る, 食べる, the event described does not involve a change of state, and is homogeneous throughout (unless there is a direct object indicating an endpoint such as このボンベを使う, 100メートルを走る, おにぎりを一つ食べる). With such predicates, various forms have the meanings such as the following:

使っている (progressive)
使ってくる (使う on the way or before coming)
使っていく (使う on the way or before going)
使うようになる (gradually/eventually come to 使う)

There is no fixed time period for 最近. It depends on the context.

  • This helped me a lot, I often did the mistake with the telic predicate (learnt also what telic meant). Great answer – Aki Jul 3 '14 at 6:54

I think (I'm not a native speaker!) that

  1. ~てきた has more than one way you can use it.

a) What you talk about is something you've not planned:

'Finally, spring has come.'

'Anime with Teddy bears in them have increased in number.'

b) Refer to an action that carries on til the time of speaking:

`I've done/forgotten my homework.' (What you'd say to your teacher in class.)

2.On the other hand, ~ようになる is what you say when the result you're referring to was planned and desired, for example:

'(Yeah,) I can swim!' (after practicing it for a long time)

Hope this helps and hope native speaker will correct me if I said anything wrong.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.