Questions tagged [grammar]

文法. A collective term for syntax (the way sentences are put together) and morphology (forms of words, including the way new words are put together). Often used to describe function words such as particles, to describe word endings, and to talk about general sentence structure.

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Can 〜に modify a noun? [duplicate]

Here is an example sentence from a grammar book. 東京で若者の街と言ったら、そりゃあ渋谷に原宿だろう。 Does 渋谷に modify 原宿? Can one use 「AにB」in this way to mean “B which is in A”? Or is 渋谷に原宿 simply an abbreviation of 渋谷にある原宿?
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Is there any continuity behind these verb endings?

In Japanese the seems to be a lot of reoccurring verb endings. Some basic ones are fairly easy to understand, like 動く vs 動かす, here it looks like あ plus す is used to indicate acting upon something ...
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~とは関係なく - ~is unrelated? Regardless of~?

Sorry for another silly question so soon. :S マジかよ。本当にユーがやったのか?だとしたら、俺が探している犯人はユーなのか?いや、京子ちゃんの事件は連続殺人事件とは別件なのだろうか?だから生き残ることが出来たとしたら?逆に、俺の事件が連続殺人とは関係なく、連続殺人の犯人がユー? For quick context, the main ...
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Why use the negative ない in 自分のことしか考えてない男のはずだ [duplicate]

I saw this sentence in an episode of Attack on Titan A character that is believed to be selfish does something perceived to be selfless by the the speaker, and the speaker says 自分のことしか考えてない男のはずだ ...
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Difference between と共に and と当時に?

From what I know they can both mean "at the same time" or "together". Is there any difference or nuance between the two?
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Why is 暗い conjugated as 暗くsometimes?

I know in past tense, you use く like 暗くない but even in present tense, I see example phrases where 暗く is used. For instance: もう暗くなったから、帰りましょう。 I'm a beginner so bear with me please and thanks!
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なんの and っていうんだ meanings

I came across this sentence during immersion: それにたとえ こいつが来たからって何の役に立つっていうんだ? What do なんの and っていうんだ mean in this case? I have read that っていうんだ is used to form a rhetorical question, while it is said ...
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What does this expression 引き気味 mean in English ? [Manga] [duplicate]

Context: MC's thought about a character's reaction (A-san), after she is observing MC and his team talking. She looks surprised because she has never thought that they will decided to help her and ...
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Can に乗る contain a place/direction and is it the same as [vehicle]で 行く?

In the Busuu course I'm taking I learned the word 乗る and that it means something like "take" or "ride". For that purpose I used the structure [vehicle]で 行く up until now. I ...
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両手に持った剣 - One sword in each hand or one sword held with both hands?

I apologize in advance for the humongous source I am about to link but I feel like it's important to understand the context here to get a clear picture. Nonetheless I'll try to filter out the ...
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だって at the end of sentence [duplicate]

I have stumbled upon this sentence during my immersion あのオヤジを呼ぶだって? What does だって mean at the end of the sentence?
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difference between ように言う and ようにと言う

I have bumped into this sentence during my immersion: なんでも 離婚した君のお父さんが娘の君が困った時に渡すようにとお母さんに言ったらしい。 Why in this case is ようにと言う and not ように言う? Is this a direct quotation instead of imperative defined ...
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The volitional form with になる

What is meant in this grammar: Grammar: He uses the verb volitional form + になった Context: In a graded reader "Run ! Melos" (走れメロス). The main character is running to his death, literally he ...
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Understanding「それでも時に凍えそうになるほど人の世は厳しい」

人は一人でなど強くなれん 皆で支え合い、温め合い それでも時に凍えそうになるほど人の世は厳しい I have difficulty figuring out the overall meaning of this sentence. What 時に means? sometimes? Does 凍えそうになるほど人の世は厳しい mean "friends can be strict ...
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What does "僕は出来れば早く年を取ってしまひたい" mean?

From "ビブリア古書堂の事件手帖": 僕は出来れば早く年を取ってしまひたい。すこし位腰が曲がったって仕方がない What I am confused about is the "てしまひたい" part. Is it a grammar point (aside from the "たい"), and what does it ...
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Is つつ for formal or literary use only -- or not?

I've found multiple sources instructing to use the つつ particle after the -masu stem of a verb only in formal or literary contexts. However, I sometimes find what appear to me to be contradictory ...
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Ambiguity between potential causative and passive causative

I have this thought from time to time when I am trying to express an English thought in Japanese. Perhaps the sentence itself is unnatural so let me know. It seems like we can make him come (to a ...
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よろしく as particle/adverb meaning ように?

Recently I came across an unfamiliar usage of よろしくnamely よろしくas an particle? adverb? Probably it means something like ~ように。I was told it gives the sentence an "ironic" nuance but I am not ...
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Is it not needed to use an adjective in the ta-form when paired with 時 as a temporal adverbial clause?

According to Essential Japanese Grammar by Masahiro Tanimori and Eriko Sato (page 352), we can pair adjectives in the ta-form with 時 to form a temporal adverbial clause. Strangely, the book doesn't ...
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「それらを習得したり磨くことより、うまく合わせて使うことが一番難しい」- Shouldn't this be 習得したり磨いたりすることより~

それらを習得したり磨くことより、うまく合わせて使うことが一番難しい Making them go smoothly and using them is harder than learning them and polishing them. Wouldn't this make sense if it were 習得したり磨いたりすることより~ ? I've read that if ...
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When do you use forms of 歩く as a verb to talk about walking?

I've come across different usages of 歩く as a verb and was unsure in which scenarios they would be most appropriate to use. Is 歩く used with 来る? 東京タワーまで歩いて来ます。 Or is it used with 行く? 東京タワーまで歩いて行きます。 ...
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Difference between 殺人 and 殺人罪 and a change in grammar

In Duolingo this Japanese sentence is the approved translation for the English sentence: He received a guilty verdict for murder. 彼は殺人の有罪判決を受けました。 Likewise for the following pair: She was found ...
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Is there a need to define what kind of 確率 is spoken about?

This sentence is taken from the 5th chapter of the Guilty Gear Web-Comic, which you can find here: All Chapters: https://www.guiltygear.com/ggst/jp/story/ Chapter 5 (sentence on page 4): https://www....
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Which part of the sentence is emphasised in Japanese?

My question relates to which part of the information is emphasised more in Japanese, the part that comes first or in the end of a sentence for instance what would be the nuance in this type of ...
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What is なんか doing in these sentences?

I know that なんか means "something" or that it can be used as filler. But in these two sentences it seems to be using another meaning. • 東京に行くけど、なんか欲しいものある? • なにか食べたいものはある? Doesn't "もの&...
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Meaning of させたとして

In this news I heard this sentence: 福岡県飯塚市のディスカウントストアで食料品を万引きし、店の警備員にけがをさせたとして隣接する嘉麻市の職員の男が逮捕されました。 I can understand the meaning form the context, but the part させたとして isn't that clear to me: I know ...
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Circumstances where polite form is never used?

I am trying to understand when plain conjugations should be used in polite speech. My basic understanding is that plain conjugations are always used when they are followed by particular particles, ...
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Difference between Verb (ない stem)+ ずに and Verb (ない form) + で 2nd action

Even after looking at example sentences, I can't seem to figure out the difference between the two. They both seem to mean "without doing ~". I gathered that ずに is a written form, but I've ...
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Is it possible to use a verb in なかった form when using ~た方がいい?

Hou ga ii can follow verbs used for giving suggestions and advices. To omoimasu, which means 'I think', often follows this expression, making it sound less assertive. It follows verbs in the ta-form (...
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我が道に 足りぬを探し たたかへど

我が道に 足りぬを探し たたかへど 散る間際こそ ビューティフルと知る This is coming from a character parodying a samurai. The English voice-over for the first half says "Battle after battle I sought to attain the glorious path.....
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~ごろ or ~ぐらい for non-clock points in time?

This is probably a ridiculously simple question, but somehow I've been unable to pin down the answer myself. To say "about / approximately" for non-clock points in time, do you use ごろ or ...
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How to structure this rhetorical question?

I'm currently shopping together a dialogue between two people, where one person repeats a previously used phrase in a mocking way. 彼女はいわゆる『真鍮のような』語っていますか? Kanojo wa iwayuru "shinchū no yōna"...
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Confusing on understanding【知ってるであるか】

why there is a verb 「知ってる」plus another[であるか]?
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Usage of なら in this sentence

I came across this sentence recently: 日本語ならちょっと喋れるよ The translation given was 'I speak a little Japanese.' I am struggling to understand how なら functions as a particle here, since from what I have ...
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Meaning of the form 形で [duplicate]

I found this construction I'm not sure about: 追い討ちをかける形で逃走中の数グループを何者かが襲撃 I think I understand the general meaning of the sentence: there are groups fleeing (逃走中の数グループ), someone unnamed was pursuing ...
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112 views

Adding words between quotative と and the following verb

彼女は私に嘘をついていたと白状した。 She confessed to me that she had told a lie (given translation) This sentence seems ambiguous to me. It isn't clear whether she told a lie to me or to someone else. But it seems ...
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meaning of で言っても? [closed]

Found this sentence: 人生経験で言っても、十数年引きこもっていた俺よりも、彼の方が上なんだろう。 Is it a grammatical structure or am I missing something?
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What is the use of で here?

In the sentence “レジャーが目的で行く“ what does the で express here? Does に work here? I was trying to compare it to the 〜しに行く, like 勉強しに行く.I understand that 目的 is a noun so there is no ます form. What if I want ...
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「ここで漫画読んでっから」=「ここで漫画読んでいるから」?

『ジョジョの奇妙な冒険』 ハイジャッカー:こんな後ろにいるんじゃねぇ、前へ行け! ジョジョ:ハイジャックされたのはスピードワゴンの爺さんだろう。一緒にいただけの僕には関係ないね。ここで漫画読んでっから、いいから、気にせず勝手にやってくれ。 My understanding is 「ここで漫画読んでっから」=「ここで漫画読んでいるから」, but what is this ...
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How to determine if 先 refers to future or past events?

I had previously asked something similar in the past, and was convinced for a while that the the question was caused by a misquote. While that could still be part of it, I think I'm now able to ...
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Is there a difference in nuance when using the particle を instead of が in passive sentences? [closed]

I was reading a Japanese text and came across this sentence: つまり、父さんの死を、悲しむこともできない。わかちあう事ができない。そんな事実をつきつけられて。 Is there any extra nuance in that "そんな事実をつきつけられて"?. Also, I'm confused on ...
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Is there any difference between わけにはいかない、~てはいけない and ~てはならない?

From what I understand, they all mean the same, but maybe the nuance is different or it could be something else.
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80 views

In the sentence, 「リコとマイは会わなくなりました」, is 会わなくconjugated from 会わない?

While reading, I came across the following: Translation: Riko and Mai stopped seeing each other gradually. My question is very similar to A negative verb conjugated as an adjective?. However, I would ...
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How does 見ての work here? [duplicate]

I found this sentence and I don't know how the grammar works here: 俺たちを見ての反応。 Why is the verb in its て form? and is it different from saying "俺たちを見た反応"?
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107 views

Does [だけど] have some grammatical function with [ほど]?

I saw this combination in the following part of a story: ステータスを見る限りではブラさんすら負けるほどだけど、ブラさん的にはそんなに脅威ではないっぽい? I read that normally ほど is used in several patterns, for example "A + ほど + B" to ...
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145 views

General meaning of に

I know in Japanese each particle has a general meaning: を marks a direct object, が a subject, etc. Even で, with its multiple meanings, was explained to me like a sort of boundary-marker: in 私はペンで書きました,...
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140 views

What does "人の入れた曲にしかも小声で座ったまま!" mean?

I can understand the sentence from "しかも" onwards, but the former part is quite confusing to me. In particular: Who does "人" refer to? Does "入れた" here mean "insert&...
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163 views

鋼 pronunciation

I know that one of the kanji for Steel is 鋼 and one of the pronunciation is はがね (hagane). But in some mangas I read this kanji with the pronunciation がね (gane) without the は; like 黒鋼 (くろがね/Kurogane). ...
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392 views

Why is を used with 作りにくい?

Examples I have seen are 例文を作りにくいです。 なぜ大人になると友達を作りにくいのか? I thought にくい transforms verbs into a イ形容詞.
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124 views

Use of ばかり with extended periods of time

3日前に会ったばかりだ I saw him just three days ago (given translation) ばかり is one of those particles that confuses me. Doesn't 会ったばかりだ mean "I just met him"? i.e. there has not been enough time for ...

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