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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1answer
65 views

What does the text on this jacket say?

Do the two blurbs of text detailed below say something like: -"Pitiful and lost serene soul(s)" -"Jailer of Chains" I've tried to zoom in on this image to decipher the text to the ...
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99 views

Odd position of adjective

In one exercise I'm doing, it has the following sentence: 世界で一番木の古い建物は法隆寺です。 In this case, the position of the adjective 古い looks odd to me. I normally find it appear before noun or noun phrase, so I ...
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~に対して~ Usage for contrasting?

goo辞書 entry for 本土 1 その国の主な国土。属国・離島などに対していう。 The country's main territory; the country proper. Used in contrast to vassal states, outlying islands, etc. I know about the different kinds of usages ...
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1answer
58 views

How do you express something is for something

I just can't quite wrap my head around how would you express the existent of something is for a specific purpose. Like, if I want to say "I have an account for Skype" do I say "...
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1answer
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Do [贈]{おく}り物 and プレゼント mean the same thing?

The use of loan words such as プレゼント are used much more just like カメラ is and such. So should i just disregard [贈]{おく}り物 and focus my memory on something else or do you know if [贈]{おく}り物 is still used ...
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2answers
89 views

What does ~ないことはない mean?

I have looked up the '~ないことはない' grammar and it says it means either 'can' or 'is not impossible to' Link to grammar site. I see that it's a double negative. However, I have this sentence that I've had ...
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53 views

How do I know when kana are included in the kanji or inflected?

What is the reading from this brief line from Final Fantasy 5? ばっつ! 立てっ! Bartz! Standup! Is the kanji read ta? That would make it たてっ, or is the kanji read tachi? How would I know to drop the ち if I ...
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「の為の」 in certain contexts

So I've seen this usage of 為 pop up twice now and I still can't figure out what its exact meaning is supposed to be, here's the two cases in question: I found this one in a videogame, where the ...
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1answer
35 views

A reverse sentence structure?

So I have been watching this Japanese TV Series called Mare and I've been wondering most of the time on their sentence structures. It's something like this: しょうがないですね? とるーさんは。 Can someone explain ...
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how do you use ごと

hi i found ごと through immersion and when i looked it up it says it is a normalizing suffix can anyone clear this out for me i am still confused of how to use this word. example sentence if it helps ...
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68 views

Passive voice with ている

When a verb in the passive voice is used in the ている form, what nuance does that carry? Some examples: 図書館はいろいろな情報が集められています。 米は特にアジアで食べられています。 漢字は中国や日本などで使われています。 中国からお茶が輸入されています。 My interpretation ...
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155 views

Correct grammar? 「僕は20歳大学生。」

僕は20歳大学生。 I feel that 20歳 is used as an adjective here. Is there any special conjugation?
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How to understand 委ねる in this line

I'm failing to understand what it means for the 戦い to 委ねる in the below sentence. Is there anyone who could clarify what it means in this case? この戦いは国の勝ち負けだけじゃなく一人一人がどちらを選ぶのか委ねている Additional ...
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Question about 変な奴だって思う子がいたら

Im reading a manga called Yotsubato and this phrase occurs when Yotsuba dad is talking to a girl witch is his neighbour. He says: 変な奴だって思う子がいたら. The meaning is: If you see a girl that makes you ...
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Who's going what in 「溺愛する一人息子」

I'm referring to the following sentence, where I've placed the topic in brackets: (お婆は)溺愛する一人息子の又八が唆されて村を出たと思い込み、武蔵を激しく憎み命を奪うために旅を続ける。 I'm unsure as to who's actually doing the 溺愛: お婆は息子を溺愛する?...
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Modifying nouns (how to know if a modified noun is the object or the subject?)

晩ご飯を食べなかったボブは、映画で見た銀行に行った。 Bangohan o tabenakatta bobu wa, eiga de mita ginkou ni itta. This means "Bob, who didn't eat dinner, went to the bank HE saw at the movie." What if I want to say "Bob, ...
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132 views

Parsing the sentence 書く人物の顔が頭に入っていないと効果はない

This sentence is from Death Note, specifically on how to use it. This sentence is written in-universe using English. It states, “This note will not take effect unless the writer has the person’s ...
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1answer
209 views

Clarification about how 惚れた should be translated

There is sentence 「だがまあ、惚れた女を一途に見守っている男の邪魔をするのは無粋と言うものだ」 which I rougly translated as "However, as they say, it's rude to disturb a man who is earnestly watching over loved woman". But this ...
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Ambiguity when describing with verbs, e.g. 酒を飲ませる人

Here's a small thing I never thought about for too long as I always kinda dismissed it due to the context usually being clear enough, but now I've gotten curious and I figured I'd ask away: Let's take ...
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2answers
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お正月には「初詣」といって…grammar

In my text book I have a sentence I’m struggling with. The paragraph reads 「日本人の生活を見ると、神棚と仏壇を祭る他にも、もっと色々な宗教的習慣や行事があることに気がつくだろう。まず、お正月には「初詣」といって、人々は神社やお寺にお参りに行き、お守りやお札をもらう。 The part that gets me is how ...
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Is Japanese really an agglutinative language?

In the linguistics topic of language typology, Japanese is often included in lists of agglutinative (or agglutinating) languages, but when learning or reading about Japanese grammar exclusively this ...
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858 views

What does ~ながらにして mean?

Can someone please explain the bold grammar? せんてんてき 【先天的】 《ダナ》生まれながらにして持っていること
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Trying to make sense of a sentence in Akutagawa's “Hell Screen”

Towards the end of chapter 10 of Akutagawa's Hell Screen, その度にばさ/\と、凄じく翼を鳴すのが、落葉の匂だか、滝の水沫とも或は又猿酒の饐ゑたいきれだか何やら怪しげなものゝけはひを誘つて、気味の悪さと云つたらございません。 Source which translated to The flattering of wings is ...
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Can someone help me understand what the と particle is doing in this sentence?

I'm fairly certain the と particle here is the conditional form. But I could be totally wrong. それが真実であると仮定しよう。 The translation I have for it is, "Let's suppose it is true". But it seems odd ...
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42 views

不思議に思う meaning/grammar

In my text book I have the sentence 「どうして神様や仏様を同時に祭ることができるのか不思議に思うかもしれない」 Does this translate to “how can they worship both Buddha and other gods at the same time, they will think strangely”. When I ...
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47 views

What is the exact translation of this sentence?

There is this sentence in my textbook that I don't quite understand the structure of: スイスのクレーマーさんですか、ドイツのクレーマーさんですか. So if I understood it correctly it's asking if that person is from Switzerland or ...
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How would the meaning of this sentence change if ものだから becomes から (or ことから)

I saw this Anki card today: 家が狭いものだから、大きい家具は置けません。 For a long time, the mediocre learner in me has brushed off this sentence as just an equivalent of 家が狭いから、大きい家具は置けません。 But I have been thinking ...
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643 views

“Te-form” versus “masu-stem + して” (消しているうちに versus 消ししているうちに)

Is there any difference between 消して and 消しして in the following sentences? For example, A: 手紙を書いては消し、書いては消ししているうちに、朝になってしまった。 B: 手紙を書いては消し、書いては消しているうちに、朝になってしまった。
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てを form grammar [duplicate]

I encountered this sentence with を directly after て: バックヤードの小包も減っては増えてを繰り返していたが、今日あたりから減る一方になっていた。 Is this a proper usage of を? I normally see を after either a noun or の. Here's how I think what the ...
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600 views

Different ways to express 'if A happens'

What is the difference between soshite, suruto and sorede? I am unable to distinguish the used-cases - they all seem to indicate 'If A happens then ....' jibun no koto o otona da to omoimasu ka? ........
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50 views

Meaning of にあるとのことだった

I found this sentence, of which I understand the general meaning, but can't really grasp the role and implication of the last part: 呼ばれてやってきた電気屋が調べたところ、故障の原因は室外機の基板が壊れていることにあるとのことだった As far as I ...
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How can you divide verbs into conjugation groups easily?

I have been learning the verb list for the N4 exam but I do not know how to tell the group of a verb. Until now I have memorized them by heart. Nevertheless I still have trouble telling the group of a ...
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What is the accurate meaning of そうですね/そうですか?

I was told that 'そうですか’ has two basic meanings according to the speaker's accent. One is 'Really? I understand', the other meaning is 'Yes, it is, I know that'. But what about 'そうですね'? Does '...
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Multiple subject?

When I say I’m now busy, it’s 今は忙しい But what I don’t understand is that 今 is being used as the topic. I’m this sentence, the real person that’s busy is me, so if I choose to not omit the person, but ...
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The usage of じゃなりません [closed]

From grammar lessons, I’ve learned that the base format of “the test is not tomorrow” is 試験は明日じゃない。 However, nobody speaks like this and the polite form should be 試験は明日じゃないです。 Or, more formally, ...
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Meaning of っていうことで

In an interview, a band member replied to a question about why they decided to release 2 songs at the same time. So she said that it was their manager who told them that the band was contacted to ...
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What does 'ワインを買っていくよ。' mean?

I am very confused about the meaning of the expressions 'ていく' and 'てくる' and seems that every website I look has a different explanation. Translations that I think are good: 'Go in order to buy wine'; '...
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what is the usage of the でーparticle in this sentence?

context:the article which i was reading is about a female model who has been doing photography sessions with certain companies. しばらく就職活動で忙しくなるということで、このタイミングで撮影できたのはラッキーでした< what i don't ...
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90 views

When a verb in the present expresses the past, is it CORRECT to conjugate it to the past and still nothing changes?

If あの子どもは、それを口に入れるや、吐き出した is correct, is あの子どもは、それを口に入れたや、吐き出した also correct? If yes, has the meaning changed at all?
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631 views

Meaning of や in this sentence

美人だときくや友藏{ともぞう}もヒロシも身を乗り出した。 When? they heard that she was a beautiful women both 友藏 and ヒロシ leaned forward. I have no idea what the や in bold is. It seems like it ought to be とき, but I've never ...
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1answer
2k views

What is the difference between 見てない and 見たことがない?

The title says it all, what's the difference between 見てない and 見たことがない? Lately, I've seen japanese people using 見てない to express that they have never seen something, eg: この映画は見てない。 But I thought ...
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1answer
51 views

Problem with understanding the action of いる in 決まった場所にいる代わりに

In a recent article 仕事で外国に行く前にPCR検査の予約ができるようにする from NHK Easy Japanese I found this sentence, (which I give here in a bit abbreviated form): [...]着いてからしばらくの間、決まった場所にいる代わりに、PCR検査で[...]...
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1answer
914 views

Differences between Wa Nai and Ga Nai?

I first learnt Ga as always attached to Arimasen so still trying to grasp the nuances when changed to a Wa. From my understanding of Wa vs Ga differences, it's just simply a matter of topic vs ...
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1answer
51 views

Usage of している in cases of talking about experience

I have a doubt regarding the use of している in cases of punctual verbs. I inferred it out that the difference between た form i.e. the Japanese past form and ている (When it is used in Perfectual Sense) it ...
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2answers
149 views

Different ways of saying “good night” in Japanese [closed]

I know that おやすみなさい means "good night" in Japanese and it can be shortened to おやすみ. What is the difference between the two? In English there are other phrases such as "sweet dreams"...
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1answer
174 views

Use of「ことがわかる」in this sentence

I encountered this sentence in an article from NHK News web easy: 今まで国からお金をもらうためには、旅行した人が本当に利用したことがわかる書類などを「Go Toトラベル」の事務所に出さなければなりませんでした。 I cannot understand what 「本当に利用したことがわかる書類」means in this case. ...
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1answer
121 views

difference in position with 後 [duplicate]

I was wondering what the difference between 一週間後 and 後一週間 is. I know the pronunciation would be いっしゅうかんご and あといっしゅうかん. However my teacher was saying that the first one means 'after one week' and the ...
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1answer
53 views

そう with verbs in different forms as well as the differences with みたい

Here are a couple of sentences: 雨が降るそうです 雨が降りそうです Does 1 mean I hear it will rain, while 2 means It seems it will rain?? And then, what about tenses?: 雨が降ったそうです ? 1 meaning I heard it will rain? ...
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1answer
58 views

help with breaking down this sentence: 私が今まで見た中で最も面白いもの

私が今まで見た中で最も面白いもの I (think?) understand the meaning of the sentence but I have a hard time understanding the grammar. My two questions are: What is the role of the で In mid sentence? I’ve been told ...
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2answers
549 views

Arimasu is used for things that aren't living. are there exceptions to this?

My learning program gave me this sentence: 私 は 彼女 の 考え 方 に 就いて 興味 が 有り ます。 Translated as "I'd be interested to know what she thinks." However i've been lead to believe that should be imasu ...

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