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I'm trying to understand the beginner sentence:

隣の女の人も、かばんから漫画の本を出しました。

which apparently translates to

The girl beside him took out a manga from her bag too.

The contents of the sentence before the comma are tripping me up

隣の女の人も

Question: Does this literally translate to something like

  1. "Neighbor's woman's man also"
  2. "Neighbor's woman's person also"

If so, why not just omit 人 and have it be "neighbor's girl also" or "隣の女も"?

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  • You may parse it grammatically as “(person who is woman) who is next to”. And as the others say, both 女の人 and 隣の are very common constructions.
    – Milten
    Jun 19 at 10:58

1 Answer 1

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女の人 is a word in its own right meaning woman, and should be memorized as such, along with 男の人. 隣の女の人も should be parsed like this: [隣の[女の人]]も. I think with that out of the way you should be able to arrive at the correct translation, right?

The girl beside him took out a manga from her bag too.

As for the difference between 男の人・女の人 and simply 男・女, see this Q&A:

When should 男の人/女の人 be used instead of 男/女?

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  • Is it accurate to then say 隣の女の人も, parsed correctly as [隣の[女の人]]も, translates to "neighbor's woman also"? I understand that's not quite idiomatic to say in English, but in terms of what the Japanese is literally meaning: is this the way to think about it?
    – George
    Jun 19 at 2:32
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    @George It's not "neighbor's woman". It's "the woman who is next to..." 隣の人 means the person who is next to.... Think of this 隣の as an adjective, and you might get the idea. It's not, but it's attributive just as adjectives. It's an attribute of the noun that follows.
    – Eddie Kal
    Jun 19 at 3:07

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