I'm reading a textbook and I have this example:

Takashi-san no ie wa doko ni arimasu ka?

Trying to understand why is arimasu used instead of desu I rephrased it like so:

Doko ga Takashi-san no ie desu ka?

and I can't tell the meaning difference. Is the second sentence wrong gramatically or logically? It's there a preference when it comes to using the first one?

Thank you in advance!

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    I wouldn't say the second sentence is wrong but more unusual. If you want to know where Takashi's house is, the first sentence is more likely to be used. For the second sentence, you would use it when someone shows you Takashi's house but you didn't pay attention so you are asking that person to show you once more with "Doko ga Takashi-san no ie desu ka" in which case the person would most liekly answer with "koko/soko/asoko desu".
    – N Gillain
    Jan 24, 2019 at 22:46
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    @NGillain それってコメントじゃなくてもはや回答じゃないですかね・・
    – chocolate
    Jan 25, 2019 at 2:38
  • @Chocolate すみません。削除しますか
    – N Gillain
    Jan 25, 2019 at 13:56

1 Answer 1


To rephrase the question with です desu, it's simply タカシさんの家はどこですか? 'Takashi-san no ie wa doko desu ka?' While どこがタカシさんの家ですか? 'Doko ga Takashi-san no ie desu ka?' is technically a valid sentence, it means 'What part of this (looks to you like it) is Takashi-san's house?'

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