3

お金を拾いました。今日は何かいいこと( あるようです / ありそうです )。

We got into a bit of a dilemma over this in class. Which one do you guys think is right in this case?

EDIT: We actually went over the questions in class, and the answer is ありそうです, according to the official worksheet solutions, which was somewhat unexpected, as this seems like more of a job for ようだ, considering that the evidence is not (solely) visual in nature.

The only explanation we could think of, was that そうだ provides a weaker level of evidentiality than ようだ, and so it conveys a sense of superstitiousness better.

But even if the case is that そうだ sounds more natural, we couldn't grasp why ようだ would be incorrect, if it is. (We've already encountered one or two slight errors in the textbook, but I'm assuming that isn't the case here.)

2
  • 2
    I would edit this and put why both sides believed they were right. Otherwise it sounds like you're asking for a homework answer behind the guise of a "dilemma". – istrasci Apr 28 at 20:53
  • 1
    Thanks for the suggestion, made the edit. I actually deliberately avoided giving any arguments for the options, such that I do not influence the reasoning in any incoming answer (it's easy to just point to a reason and say "yeah, that", so I thought of it as a filter), but now I realize, that was the wrong choice to make. – wynnmore Apr 29 at 22:35
2

そうだ can describe a subjective "hunch" about the future based on non-visual or vague information. From this page:

様態の「~そうだ」は主として視覚的印象(外見からの判断)を述べる助動詞ですが、(snip) 視覚でとらえられない動詞について漠然とした予想・予感の世界を表すようになります。(snip)

  • まだ会議は始まりそうもないから、コーヒーでも飲んできましょう。
  • 戦争はまだまだ続きそうですねえ。
  • ああ、寒い。風邪をひきそうだ。
  • この仕事は今日中に終わりそうです。

In such cases, there doesn't have to be objective reasoning or perceivable evidences; you intuitively feel so for whatever reason. Another example is 楽しそう ("Sounds fun!") after hearing some exciting plan. This function of そうだ goes very well with your example.

On the other hand, いいことがあるようです is not grammatically incorrect at all, but it usually sounds too strong or "objective". It sounds as if you strongly believe in the cause-effect relationship between お金を拾う and 今日いいことがある. If you had a supernatural ability and have successfully predicted your future with a high degree of accuracy, saying 何かいいことがあるようです would be perfectly natural.

Likewise, 死にそうだ ("I'm dying!") is something one may use rather casually, but 死ぬようだ ("It appears that I am going to die") sounds objective and thus very serious.

2

V(masu form)+そうだ means "one's own guess". V+ようだ means "an event or action that will happen with high probability because of very reliable information".

For example, you can say 雨が降りそうだ when you see the cloudy sky, but it's only your guess. On the other hand, you can say 雨が降るようだ and you have already gotten the information from the weather news.

As for your example, even if you got money, "good things will happen" is just your own guess, not because of reliable information.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.