How do you describe or specify a specific target person by their current verb in action? Or perhaps more simply, how do you use a verb as an adjective?

Here are some examples:

  • The man wearing a hat is handsome. (alt. The hat-wearing man is handsome.)
  • Is the person singing your friend? (alt. Is the singing-person your friend?)
  • The child screaming is holding candy. (alt. The screaming-child is holding candy.)

If I was to guess the grammar, perhaps:

  1. 帽子【ぼうし】をかぶる男【おとこ】の人【ひと】はかっこいい。
  2. 歌う【うたう】人は友達【ともだち】ですか?
  3. 叫ぶ【さけぶ】子供【こども】はキャンディを持って【もって】いる。

or do I use the present continuous:

  1. 帽子をかぶっている男の人はかっこいい。
  2. 歌っている人は友達ですか?
  3. 叫んでいる子供はキャンディを持っている。
  • 2
    To add to your confusion you'd rather say 帽子をかぶった男.
    – macraf
    Apr 29, 2020 at 15:50
  • Confusion has certainly been added 😂 Are you saying that to use past tense is more correct? Or another option? Apr 29, 2020 at 16:34

2 Answers 2

  1. 帽子【ぼうし】をかぶる男【おとこ】の人【ひと】はかっこいい
  2. 歌う【うたう】人は友達【ともだち】ですか?
  3. 叫ぶ【さけぶ】子供【こども】はキャンディを持って【もって】いる。

These are not very natural. 「Plain form verb + 人」 can mean "someone who will / is going to do~~", so these examples may sound like "The man who will wear a hat..." "Is the person who will sing..." "The child who will scream..." 帽子をかぶる男の人 could also mean "A man who usually/often wears a hat."

And かっこいい is incorrect. You don't attach a copula だ to an i-adjective.

  1. 帽子をかぶっている男の人はかっこいい
  2. 歌っている人は友達ですか?
  3. 叫んでいる子供はキャンディを持っている。

These sentences are fine. They mean "The man who is wearing a hat..." "Is the person who is singing..." "The child who is screaming..."

As a side note, #1 can be rephrased as 帽子をかぶっ男の人は...
歌っ人 and 叫ん子供 would mean "the person who sang" and "the child who screamed", respectively. 歌っていた人 and 叫んでいた子供 would mean "the person who was singing" and "the child who was screaming".
To say "The man who wore/was wearing a hat...", you'd say 帽子をかぶっていた男の人.

For more on 「かぶっている人」「かぶっ人」, 「持っている人」「持っ人」, 「着ている人」「着人」 etc., please refer to there threads:

  • Thank you! I have since edited (removed) the だ from the original question to avoid distraction from the grammar focus of my question. May 1, 2020 at 3:41
  • I just want to add a note of gratitude to your side-note about using past-tense verbs… the links we're very helpful, particularly the "太ってる猫" vs "太った猫" link, which explained the usage very well. May 1, 2020 at 3:50

帽子をかぶる男の人はかっこいいだ means “The man who wears a hat is handsome.” You could be referring to someone who is or is not present; it’s more ambiguous. On the other hand, 帽子をかぶっている男の人はかっこいいだ means “The man who is wearing a hat is handsome,” which better implies that the subject in question is present.

  • 1
    I don't think it's advisable to leave the ungrammatical だ in the sentences without any correction to it.
    – Leebo
    Apr 30, 2020 at 2:30
  • Thank you! I have since edited (removed) the だ from the original question to avoid distraction from the grammar focus of my question. May 1, 2020 at 3:42

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