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I read from here that at the end of a sentence could be used as a positive or negative imperative. https://japanese.stackexchange.com/a/33973/55298

It said that the dictionary form of a verb + な means negative imperative. And the masu stem of a verb + な means positive imperative.

How about the て form? I came across this sentence

めちゃめちゃ単純すぎやから笑ってな。

does it means

it's very straightforward so laugh it off

or

it's very straightforward so don't laugh

Or does it means something else? And I wonder how can we tell which verb form other than the two mentioned above means positive or negative imperative when is added. Thanks!

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  • It's definitely not a negative imperative, but we can't tell for sure only from that written line whether it's a positive imperative or something else. We would need to hear it or rely on context.
    – aguijonazo
    Jan 29, 2023 at 17:57

2 Answers 2

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"It's very straightforward so laugh it off." is the right meaning

な has almost the same meaning as ね, but な is used by men and Kansai people.

明日俺の家来てな Come to my house tomorrow, ok?

出かける準備しといてな Get ready to go out, ok?

I don't know the situation, but 笑ってな must have the same meaning.
And the speaker is Kansai people because he or she uses やから instead of だから.

Edited and added:
Now I understand what is your point.
する form(dictionary form) like 笑う 食べる 飲む 遊ぶ + な means negative order.
笑うな。-Don't laugh.
食べるな。-Don't eat.
飲むな。-Don't drink.
遊ぶな。Don't play.

して form like 笑って 食べて 飲んで 遊んで + な(ね) means positive order.
笑ってな。(笑ってね。)-Laugh, ok?
食べてな。(食べてね。)-Eat, ok?
飲んでな。(飲んでね。)-Drink, ok?
遊んでな。(遊んでね。)-Play, ok?

Caution 1:
して form + な also can be used as an abbreviation of していな, just as like してる can mean している。
In this usage, you can't use ね instead.
笑ってな。(笑っていな。) -Be laughing.

Caution 2:
し form(masu stem form)like 笑い 食べ 飲み 遊び + な also means positive order, but this is a bit powerful, contrary to してな has a nuance of asking.
In this usage, you can't use ね istead.
笑いな。-Laugh.
食べな。-Eat.
飲みな。-Drink.
遊びな。-Play.

In short, there are four types.
笑ってな(笑ってね)-Laugh,ok?
笑ってな(笑っていな)-Be laughing.
笑いな-Laugh.
笑うな- Don't laugh.

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This is neither of those なs; it's the な as in そうだな. (I guess it could be 笑っていな but doesn't make much sense in this context)

You should already be familiar with just the ~て form for a casual command/request. Thinking more about it, the particles that can follow it are limited, so I'm not quite sure this is the 終助詞 ~な, but it's very similar. よ, ね, な, and や may follow this command ~て. (Other 終助詞 such as わ or ぞ cannot.)

While な is by no means uncommon in standard Japanese, I get the impression it's even more common in Kansai-ben, which this speaker appears to use.

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