I heard the sentence


from a Japanese, meaning "We don't worry with buying presents [during Christmas]"; I was wondering about the 買う心配 part, with a な-adjective directly following a 辞書 verb; I tried looking in my grammars and googling a bit, but I'm not sure I ever saw this construction and I still can't find information about how it work.


3 Answers 3



First of all, "present(s)" is 「プレゼント」.

Next, 「買う心配」 is grammatical because 「心配」 is a noun in this context; It is not a na-adjective here. Since it is a noun, the 「が」 can directly follow the 「心配」.

As a noun, 「心配」 can mean "worry/worries", "care", "anxiety", "fear", "uneasiness", etc.

So, the sentence means:

"I/We/You have no worries about buying presents!"

  • I knew about verb + noun, like 買った本 for "The book I bought"; it's the first time I encounter something like this, though. Can short present + noun generally mean "noun about verb"?
    – Mauro
    Nov 8, 2019 at 23:20
  • 2
    It depends on the verb-noun combination. Point is with 買う心配, it is not 心配 that you 買う, correct? In 買った本, it is the 本 that you 買った. So, both patterns exist. If I said 「ボクがトラックを買う可能性はゼロに近い。」, It is not 可能性 ("possibility") that I might or might not buy. It is the トラック.
    – user4032
    Nov 9, 2019 at 0:46
  • Not sure why since the structure is the same (maybe because 心配 can be a な-adjective), but the truck example is quite clear; thanks again, I'll think about this, but I think I kinda get it.
    – Mauro
    Nov 9, 2019 at 13:53
  • 1
    @Mauro further reading: japanese.stackexchange.com/q/14541/7810 Nov 12, 2019 at 2:46

The 心配 is a noun here. It's a common pattern of modifying nouns. Try searching for "modifying noun".

Basically there is a main clause and a sub-clause ending in a plain-form verb. The verb doesn't have to be in present tense.


Japanese relative clauses never need particles.

First off, as others have stated, プレゼント買う心配がありません means "(I) don't have to worry about buying presents" or literally "(I) have no worries about buying presents" If we swap 心配 with 必要, then we get "I don't need to buy presents." or literally "I don't have the need to buy presents”.

「プレゼント買う」is basically modifying clause simlar to a gerund meaning “buying present(s),” Usually gerunds are created by adding の at the end of the verb like プレゼントを買うのが大好き Meaning “(I) love buying presence.”

But の is not needed when making the modifying clause as the first part of the relative clause. Here are some other examples.

プレゼントを包む心配ありません。 (We) don't have to worry about wrapping the presents.
プレゼントを買う夢を見てた。 (I) had a dream about buying presents.
プレゼントを買った弟がいません。 My younger brother who bought the present isn't here.

The last example takes a relative pronoun in English which is the bane of English Learners in Japan. Here's an article with many examples where Japanese try to figure out how to use them.

You also mentioned missing articles, but the を Is really implied in your sentence. However it is omitted verbally very often.

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