I don' understand what it means/adds on these sentences, since there's an adverb before them and the particle can be omitted and it still makes sense



2 Answers 2




This usage of 「は」 is for emphasizing the meaning of the preceding word. It often implies a contrast as well.

"I am not doing it now. (I might do it later on.)"

"If a person became this weak before your very eyes, anyone would be a little bit more (if not by much) gentle."

「弱られたら」 is in the famous "suffering passive" form, meaning I had to use a different grammar around the verb in my translation to make any sense in English.

  • so the は emphasizes the "little" in the sense of "at least a little nicer" or a "little nicer at best"?
    – YTKN
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 0:15
  • 弱られたら I understood it as "if you are (so=こんなに) weakened/troubled", is it difficult to translate it in English for native Jp speakers?
    – YTKN
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 0:17
  • 2
    @YTKN 弱られたら doesn't mean "if you are weakened". 弱る is an intransitive verb, and 弱られる is its passive form. It's suffering passive (迷惑の受身), a kind of indirect passive (間接受身), just as 「子供に泣かれた」「雨に降られた」「妻に死なれた」
    – chocolate
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 1:15
  • @Chocolate how would you translate it then so that it keeps the Japanese meaning as much as possible?
    – YTKN
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 1:20
  • 1
    @YTKN Yes, so I think it's like "If someone gets this weak in front of your eyes (and it affects you in some way.. in this case you have no choice but see it, you cannot ignore it, it inevitably makes you feel sorry, etc.) then you'd naturally be nicer, at least a little bit / even if not much"... If you'd like to know more about suffering/indirect passive, you're free to post this as a separate question.
    – chocolate
    Commented Apr 22, 2018 at 1:40


This implies "I won't do (something) now, but I might later." Without the は, there's no implying the "but I might later" part.


To me this implies "will become a little bit kinder, but not necessarily a lot kinder, but definitely not unchanged or reduced in kindness level either". Without the は, there's no implying the "but not necessarily a lot kinder, but definitely not unchanged in kindness level either" part.

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