Questions tagged [conditionals]

条件表現. Also known as if-then constructions. In Japanese conditionals are expressed with one of と, ~(れ)ば, ~たら, なら(ば).

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
127
votes
6answers
40k views

Differences among -たら、なら、-んだったら、-えば, etc

The Japanese language has a lot of patterns for "if" clauses. What are the differences among the following patterns and how do we choose to use one over the others?: 行くと 行ったら 行くなら 行けば 行くんだったら 行くのなら ...
15
votes
3answers
1k views

How to know if ~たら is hypothetical or temporal

I encountered the following sentence in the chapter introducing conditionals from the online grammar guide Imabi. 休んだら、元気になったWhen I rested, I got better. Earlier, the article explained that たら can ...
13
votes
2answers
545 views

Conflict among teachings of なら and ば

I recently read a helpful answer on a question asking for clarification on the ways to say "if" in Japanese: と, たら, なら, ば. The link is here: Differences among -たら、なら、-んだったら、-えば, etc According to the ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

How do you say “if and only if” in Japanese?

I would like to know how to express mandatory conditions in Japanese. Since Japanese distinguishes between different types of languages, I should probably ask more precisely: What is the right way to ...
10
votes
3answers
338 views

Is it ever right to use ば conditional to mean 'when'?

「だっ大丈夫よ、まるちゃんだってわたしたちのタイプだと思うよ、ねぇ」ととし子ちゃんがなぐさめれば、「そうだよ。さくらはぼくらの方の仲間だよ」と長山君が笑顔で言い、「そうよ」とたまちゃんが優しくうなずく。 (When?) Toshiko comforted her, saying, "It's alright. I think Maru is our kind of person", ...
10
votes
3answers
571 views

2 different ways to describe consecutive actions

Reading a manga I stumbled upon this sentence: 名前書いたら帰る (I will write my name and I will go home) I was a bit confused because of the conditional たら, so I tried to made up a sentence to later ask a ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

What does たら do at the end of a sentence?

時間があるなら、彼の画廊に寄ってみたら。 What meaning does たら have at the end of a sentence?
9
votes
1answer
362 views

“Reversal” nuance of なら

「帰るなら、窓を閉めなさい!」 I recently asked my teacher about なら being used in this command sentence, and she said while it was acceptable, it had a different meaning compared to 「帰ったら、窓を閉めなさい!」 While the たら ...
9
votes
2answers
902 views

Difference between ば and たら in this example

明日都合がよければきてください. 東京へきたら、ぜひ連絡してください. Why in the second example we can't replace たら with ば but in the first one we use ば. Aren't きてください and 連絡してください both requests or is there a difference?
8
votes
1answer
203 views

Difference between しては and nominalizer のは

Last time I wanted to say "Disturbing someone is bad", so I directly wrote: 誰かを邪魔するの悪いよ But I just came across another way of saying it : 誰かを邪魔しては悪いよ It bothers me a lot not to know the ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

Difference between にすれば にしたら にしてみれば “from the viewpoint of…”

I'm using 新完全マスター N2 grammar book. It lumps にしたら、にすれば、にしてみれば and にしても together. It makes no attempt to explain the differences between these, even though, on inspection of the examples and practice ...
8
votes
2answers
354 views

What is the difference between「ものなら」 and 「(の)なら」?

I would like to understand the nuance between two sentences. I found on a website the sentence : この問題{もんだい}を解{と}けるもんなら解いてみろ。 : If you can solve this problem then try solving it. And I wondered ...
7
votes
1answer
169 views

The logic behind なくば

だが、主であるそなたの許可なくばそれも許されぬ…! I understand it pretty much means "However, being our master, we can't even do that without your permission." but I don't get why なく and ば are both together. I would have ...
7
votes
1answer
181 views

ものを and conditional

I read the following sentence while learning about ~ものを: すぐに病院へ行けばいいものを、行かないで悪化させてしまった。 Which I would translate into (probably not perfectly natural English, but something like that): Though it ...
6
votes
2answers
302 views

Use of ら conditional form plus なら

I need some help with the grammar in this sentence: ボストンに居たらなら、何で会いに来なかったんだい。 I understand the conditional -たら form and the なら conditional alone. But I have not seen the two together. Does the ...
6
votes
2answers
5k views

Using たら, how do I say “would have” instead of “would”

I'm struggling to understand how I can change the tense of conditional sentences. For example, if I want to say "If I were him, I wouldn't say such things" I presume I would say "もし私が彼だったらあんなことは言わない"...
6
votes
2answers
367 views

Other uses of the たら conditional

Passing a verb to its past tense conjugation and adding ら makes the sentence a condition, right? Like 暇だったら、遊びに行くよ - If I'm free, I will go to play. But in the ももたろう tale the たら form is used ...
6
votes
1answer
91 views

Uncertain event + ならissue

I'm studying なら conditional form now and cannot understand the following: In a "Dictionary of basic japanese grammar" there is a note that s1ならs2 (s=sentence) could not be used when: 1) s1 never fails ...
6
votes
1answer
92 views

Conditional inclination with ようと思ったら

I've started listening to Japanese podcasts more frequently to cultivate my audio comprehension, and I've encountered an expression I am not confident that I understand. The female broadcaster ...
6
votes
1answer
294 views

Why is using ば or と, to indicate a conditional, considered ungrammatical if the 2nd part expresses a will, wish, order or request?

The example my book gives for an ungrammatical usage is "山田さんがくれば、いっしょに大阪に行きませんか?" I recognize that such things are the standard, but nowhere in any of my research is it indicated why that's the case, ...
5
votes
3answers
450 views

How much does it matter if I use the wrong 'if'?

Specifically talking about ば、なら、たら、and と here. I just read Derek Schaab's excellent reply to this question on when to use the different forms of conditionals -- something I'm really struggling with ...
5
votes
4answers
603 views

S1 と S2 conditional S2 being in past tense

ごんは、家に着くと、ウナギを家の外に置いて、言いました。 In this sentence, a fox called ごん has run all the way home to escape an angry fisherman who he stole an eel from. Why is と the conditional used here? I could understand ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Trouble parsing sentence with どうしても and a triple negative

I am using an easy-to-read VN to get some grammar experience. The following sentence has been troubling me for about half an hour now: 生徒会に入ったら、どうしてもこっちを着なきゃだめなの? The topic of 着る is 制服 if that ...
5
votes
2answers
152 views

Colloquial contraction “出しゃ[あ]” [duplicate]

I encountered this sentence. なめんなよ。てめえみていな雑魚、おれが本気をだしゃあ… I believe the context is quite obvious: The speaker feels stronger than his enemy, the listener. From how I understand it, I’d translate ...
5
votes
2answers
192 views

How certain is たら?

In skype conversations and the subtitles of a lot of shows I see たら being translated as "when" in some of them it seems quite morbid almost to use たら for example 帰ったら to me sounds more like "if you go ...
5
votes
2answers
403 views

~ばいい for suggestions

I am aware that ~ばいい can be used to suggest or imply something. For example, in the sentence: 自分ですればいいだろ (Do your own work) However, I tried to make the sentence: Come with her to the party / It is ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the meaning of Noun + なら

So in my N4 textbook, I have the following explanation for a grammatical construct: Noun + なら: Use "〜なら" when you say that options are no good, but "〜" is possible, okay or not a problem. The ...
5
votes
2answers
661 views

Difference between using -ba or -ra form and と for conditionals?

Is there some nuance between using each one? For example: Could I use と in place of -ba form in 電気を消せば暗くなる。 or in place of -ra form in 電気を消したら暗くなる。 like this: 電気を消すと暗くなる。 ?
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Past Unreal Conditional

After my first question was answered so beautifully, I would like to ask some more. :D I wanted to know how to use conditionals for events in the past, like: "If I had saved my money, I would be rich ...
5
votes
1answer
652 views

Usage of なら as described in Genki II is confusing to me

I'm finding the explanation of nara in Genki II very confusing.. I've understood nara as a conditional (in league with tara, and ba), sort of a variant of "if this were to be".. Genki describes it ...
5
votes
2answers
142 views

Does 彼女は私と一緒にいればよかった mean wish she WAS with me or wish she HAD been with me?

彼女は私と一緒にいればよかった Does it mean I wish she was with me (right now), or I wish she had been with me (in the past)?
5
votes
2answers
170 views

Classical: On the subject of a sentence with 連用形/て clauses + ば condicional

I'm having some trouble with this beautiful passage from the Kana Preface to the Kokinshū, which is talking about us (spaced for clarity):  1 人まろ なくなりにたれど、  2 うたの こと ゝどまれるかな。  3. たとひ とき うつり こと ...
5
votes
3answers
227 views

Usage of conditional なら

Why is 建てる in the result clause in the past tense? The answer from What is the correct usage of conditional and hypothetical? indicates that it should not be in the past. もしも 私が家を建てたなら 小さな家を建てたでしょう
5
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the purposes of としたら, とすれば, とすると?

Taking 3 examples from my textbook: 車を買うとしたらどんなタイプがいいかしら お友達が来るとすれば5月でしょう もしハワイに泊まるとすると一晩だけでしょう What are the differences between using the above versions and using たら, ば, なら, and と? My guess is that ...
5
votes
1answer
478 views

Is it grammatically correct to use もし and/or 〜ば form along with the 〜たい form to convey desire in a conditional clause?

My impression when using conditionals, most of the time, you lose the ability to express desire. For example, when conjugating to -たら、you have to use the past tense of the verb. Is it grammatically ...
5
votes
1answer
170 views

た or ていた? Is “turned right” a state or an action?

In this link, Past Unreal Conditional, user l'électeur has given an answer pointing to the tense issues in the original sentence given in the question, stating that ていた needs to be used instead of た: ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

What's the difference between ~れれば and ~れば?

別に僕は周りを無視して本に没頭したいわけでもないので、見ろと言われれば見る Would it mean the same thing if 言われれば was replaced with 言われば? What's the difference if any between ~れれば and ~れば? I'm also not certain of the meaning of the ...
4
votes
2answers
328 views

What does the verb after なくちゃ or なくては mean?

If なくちゃ is followed by another verb, is it read as "you must do X or else Y will happen" or "you must do X and then Y will happen"? Example: In this sentence (from よだかの星): おまえは、曇ってうすぐらい日か、夜でなくちゃ、...
4
votes
1answer
116 views

Difference between ほど and かぎり

I read the following sentence in an exercise: 私たちの目標は競争に打ち勝つことでもなければお金を儲けることでもありません。可能な____すごい製品を作ることだ。 A. あまり、B. ほど、C. はず、D. かぎり The correct answer was D, but I picked B. I understand the sentence ...
4
votes
2answers
152 views

What is the function of もし?

I know that もし translates to "if", but I dont know exactly when or how it should be used. I was reading Yoko Hasegawa's Japanese: a linguistic introduction. In the chapter on conditional clauses, some ...
4
votes
1answer
256 views

What does this ~ば mean, is this some irregular use of the conditional?

In Akutagawa Ryuunosuke's "藪の中" the wandering monk tells about the man who was killed: 男{おとこ}は、―いえ、太刀{たち}も帯{お}びておれば、弓矢{ゆみや}も携{たずさ}えておりました。 The translation is: The man? No, he wore a sword but had ...
4
votes
1answer
433 views

Conditional counter-factual, main verb past vs nonpast?

I'm seeing sentences using a conditional counter-factual statement, using both the past and nonpast in sentences. Examples: 安ければ買います According to the Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar (DBJG), ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Is 場合は considered a conditional form? (and how do you correctly use it?)

場合は、doesn't seem much of a conditional grammar structure to me but in class we learnt this form alongside たら、なら、と&ば。 How does 場合は、compare to these structures and how do you correctly use it? (as in ...
4
votes
1answer
661 views

Difference between うちに and うちから

おとうさん、何も起こってないうちからわざわざ断言することないでしょ。 Dad, I don't think there's any special need to state your opinions when? nothing is happening/has happened. I see うちに used to mean 'while'. This is the first time ...
4
votes
1answer
138 views

Please help me understand 言えば

I'm struggling to understand what 言えば in a question. The sentence is: お前ら 何度言えば分かるんだ I understand the general idea of what is being said, but I don't know which part 言えば relates to and I'm feeling ...
4
votes
1answer
173 views

Meaning of 噂を聞かないと思ったら

In a manga, two American boxers are talking about a guy they used to know who now lives in Japan. Boxer A: あのブルドッグがリングに上がるって本当かよ。 Boxer B: ああ。ここ数年噂を聞かねェと思ったらボクサーになってたんだよ。日本でな。 I think 数年〜...
4
votes
1answer
352 views

Is it possible to use ~さえ~ば with more than one requirement?

I have not found any sentence using ~さえ~ば with more than one requirement. Let's consider the following sentence with 3 requirements I am healthy I have enough money I can speak English to be ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Can 「〜たら〜た。」structure mean “If I had~then I would have~”?

This is probably a basic question on tense / aspect in conditional sentences but I can't find an explanation and it would be very useful to resolve. I will illustrate my question with an example ...
4
votes
1answer
227 views

Properly translating a conditional

もしも君にめぐり逢えたら 二度と君の手を離さない I would translate this to: Even if I could meet you by chance, I would never leave your hand a second time. That is because of the following analysis: moshi, if; mo, ...
4
votes
1answer
98 views

Should I use と or たら in that case? [duplicate]

I've got a task in uni today to put either と or たら. And there's a sentence I can't comprehend: 箸で食べて(みると、みたら)どうですか。 I don't quite understand which form I have to use here, so it would be great if I ...