"Trapped" is a past participle (that is it is being used like an adjective despited being derived from a verb), so the word "rabbit" must be the subject (or the object) some other verb. Thus, in English a senteced containing "trapped rabbit" would need some other verb, something like "The trapped rabbit got scared" or "The hunter's dog stared at the trapped rabbit."

But in Japanese, as far as I'm aware, there is no past participle, or even adjectives for that matter. The Japanese language seems to also have a rather strict verb final construction. I have to be leave the language can't express something like "trapped rabbit" without some complex arrangement of words. I also can't expect that the Japanese language would position "trapped" at or near the end with some kind of link to a specific word, and I don't think Japanese can do that.

I found nothing satisfactory with browser searches and I don't know where else to search. The best I got was a very similar question on this site How to say "trapped" in Japanese

I didn't find the answers here very satifying.

So how does one say "The trapped rabbit got scared" and "The hunter's dog stared at the trapped rabbit" and can I get a grammatical breakdown of both sentences, and maybe express other examples that differ somehow and are probably needed for me to know.

1 Answer 1


I think you're not looking for an adjectival form, or a participle form.

I think you're looking for a way to form a noun-phrase using relative clauses:

  • Regular sentence: The rabbit is trapped.

  • Relative clause: rabbit that is trapped = trapped rabbit

Similarly, in Japanese:

  • Regular sentence: 兎{うさぎ}は わなに 掛{か}かった

  • Relative clause: わなに掛かった兎

A simple sentence has the form:

  • [Subject] + が・は + [Predicate(終止形)], where the predicate is in 終止形 or sentence-ending form.

A relative clause has the form:

  • [Predicate(連体形)]+[Subject], where the predicate is in 連体形 or attributive form.

This change of 終止形 to 連体形 is overtly realised in the copula だ, which turns into な in its attributive form:

  • 図書館は静かだ - the library is quiet

  • 静かな図書館 - quiet library

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