Questions tagged [copula]

コピュラ. Words such as だ・です or constructions such as である which link a noun or adjective to a subject. Similar to English 'be'.

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What's the difference between ending an answer with だ vs だよ・です?

I was talking to someone and they asked me: 出身はどこなの? to which I responded saying: イギリス出身だ My friend then told me that that sounded a bit strange, and it would have sounded more natural if I had ...
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Can a irrealis form verb be combined with the adjective particle "な"

I asked this question because irrealis form and continuative form verbs can be combined with だ, so can't it be combined with na? I mean it looks ungrammatical but da goes with it so...
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にで and でに confusion

So I saw these particles in a definition and a song. First, as ひとりでに, which got translated as by itself (this got approved by the way) and then "単独にでなく", which I'm guessing means not being ...
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2 votes
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だ in 「別に迷惑だなんて」

別に迷惑だなんて What kind of difference in meaning or nuances does this だ impart to such an utterance? Examples with だ: 電車から車椅子が降りる時や、車椅子が階段昇降機を使う時に、駅員さんの「ご迷惑をおかけしまーす」という掛け声が聞こえてくるけど、別に迷惑だなんて思ってないから、「...
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「仕方なくです」 形容詞の連用形 く+ copula です?

I am stumped by 「仕方なくです」 which I have heard/seen occasionally. 用があり仕方なく広島へ。。。仕方なくですね (source) 一年ぶりに来ました。友人に行きたいと言われて仕方なくですが、、、鶏皮は一人5本に減ってました。(source) 仕方なくです!(笑) (source) I know 形容詞の連用形 く, apart ...
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It seems だ can be omitted in とは思う?

いたずらに会議体を作って、賛否両論を並べ、これ以上時間を費やすのは賢明とは思えません。(source) しかし、何時までも状況改善を待つことは賢明とは思えません。(source) 今日のあなたの服装はとても仕事向きの服装とは思えませんが。(source) I am under the impression after a 名詞/形容動詞, 「だとは思えません」 and the だ-less 「...
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〜を。。。だ inside a と言う clause

In the ASK Graded Reader ゴン狐, the following sentence appears: 魚売りは、おれを泥棒だと言って、。。。 I have seen that using を。。。と言う is like saying 'to call somebody something.' My issue is that there is a だ at the end ...
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conditional ば with だ? [duplicate]

I found this: でも、考えてみればだ。 Actually this is the first time I've seen a だ with a conditional together. What does it mean?
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What is the difference between 「でがす」 and 「です」?

Here is the sentence I came across the word 「でがす」. とりあえず これはアッシからのおみやげでがす。 受け取っておくんなせえ。 I'm not sure if it is an archaic form of the copula「です」. Is there any nuance between them?
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Why is ばかり used with だ / です

ばかり, when used to add the connotation of having just done something, usually (or nearly always, in the examples I've seen), takes a copula after it. Either だ or です. An example: 彼は帰ったばかりだ。 My ...
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Grammatically, how does「である」work? [duplicate]

In「である」、my previous understanding was that the「で」functions the same way as the "method/means" particle「で」by making everything that came before it attached to「で」and that「ある」is just regular「ある」...
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What is the difference between べき and べきだ

Are べき and べきだ one and same thing? I found many grammars where べき is defined, but examples with べきだ are provided. 知るべき。 両親には従うべきだ。 Or is だ a copula? But then why do we use a copula in such case?
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Dropping だ in sentences

I was again reading Shin Kanzen Master N1 Dokkai when I encountered a passage with a sentence which intrigued me. The second sentence read 最初と言われています。 While I do understand that dropping of だ ...
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2 votes
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is this そうなんだか a valid sentence?

If そうなんですか (sounandesuka) is formal, how come it's not often that I hear of そうなんだか (sounandaka) as casual version or maybe that I just don't hear enough? thanks.
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2 answers
283 views

The grammar of 何でもない [duplicate]

How does 何でもない work in terms of grammar to mean nothing? I am confused because I'm not sure which of these is happening (or even if it is one of these): 1: Is it getting 何で (why) and then adding も to ...
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Three grammatical questions about Japanese Manga

The following is an exercise I do daily to better understand grammar. I’ll claim A and the title. Title: 第3話75歳の値段 第 is a prefix to form ordinal numbers. In this case, it precedes 3, so third. 話 ...
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Is the で in ~が原因で~ the copula?

In constructs like ~が原因で起こった~ is the で the て form of だ? For example in: 旦那や子どもへの嫉妬が原因で起こったママ友トラブル I assume it is for the が to make sense, but I can't find any information on this, so if anyone knows ...
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Obscure verb forms?

Question 1. It my understanding that you can form a negative polite volitional by attaching まい to the ます of the verb. For example, 食{た}べます becomes 食べますまい. Is it therefore also possible to turn the ...
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Can you say“ 何が貴方のお名前はですか”?Or does 何 have to come before です?

I’ve read that what’s your name is “貴方のお名前は何ですか“ but can you also put 何 to the beginning or is that incorrect? So can it be: 何が貴方のおなまえはですか。
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How does がんだとわかった work in this sentence?

I grabbed this sentence off NHK news easy, https://www3.nhk.or.jp/news/easy/k10012139481000/k10012139481000.html . The sentence is, 国立成育医療研究センターと国立がん研究センターは、2016年と2017年,...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Nominal connectors in embedded sentences: 名詞・形容動詞 +「である」「だという」「な」等 (+ こと) の使い分けについて

This is a general question about what to place after nominals when connecting them to constructs like こと. Lately I've realized I've either forgotten or never knew when I should be using だということ over ...
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What's the usage of で in this sentence: 日本はユーラシア大陸の東にある島国で国の70%は山です。

日本はユーラシア大陸の東にある島国で国の70%は山です。 I translated it as something like "Japan is an island country of east of the Eurasia continent and 70% of it is made of mountains."
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3 votes
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When to omit だ when answering questions?

Maybe this is a stupid question, but in Minna no Nihongo it says to omit だ when giving a positive answer to a question. Question: こんばんひま? Answer: うん、ひま。 But it is not explained if one can omit だ ...
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Nominalization of です?

Basically I’m wondering if です can be nominalized. For example how would you say: ”I don’t like being mean.” or ”It’s good to be nice!” Can I say: 酷いであるのが好きじゃない? 優しいであるのがいい? These are my attempts ...
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8 votes
2 answers
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The uses of である

I understand that である is most commonly used to replace だ/です at the end of a sentence in written expressions. But outside this usage, I can't find much explanation on how to use this structure. In ...
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1 vote
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Can だ be left off in informal sentences?

In declarative statements I’ve gathered that saying just 「これ新聞だ」for example would be too forward or a bit aggressive. So could you just say 「これ新聞」or even just 「新聞」for informal sentences? I understand ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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で in the copula である

I have always wondered where the で in ~である (and ~でございます) comes from. In the answer to the question 「です」, what is it really? Is my analysis correct?, Eiríkr Útlendi states that the で in ~である is the ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Origin of the usage of な in ~なんだ

In their answer to the question Usage of nan desu?, Earthliŋ described the な in the ~なんだ-construction to be "the inflection of the copula だ, if you like". I guess this is the same inflection ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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Two も clauses and then です

When saying that someone or something is both this and that, is XもYもです appropriate? 彼は画家も教師もです。 I ask both for written and spoken. I feel like the copula is already a である so it should be something ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Can です be used attributively (as a modifier of a noun)?

Goo dictionary lists the 連体形 (attributive) form of copula as です but does not provide an example of an attributive usage. Can です be really used attributively? I have problems finding any example of it.
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1 vote
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Confusion on use of だった with sentence that uses nominalized verb

I'm reading a book and have come across this sentence アニーが指さしているのは、一本のなわばしごだった。 I know this sentence translates to something like Annie was pointing to a long rope ladder. But what I truly don'...
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2 votes
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Explanation for 'noun + な + ので', is 'ので' still a 接続助詞 here?

I saw the following statement in a grammar book: 接続助詞 'ので' can only be placed after 用言 and 助動詞 in form of 連体形. But in another text book it says that ので can also be placed after a noun, and then ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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Past tense ...でする vs. past tense copula です confusion

Maybe this is a stupid question, because very likely it is possible for advanced learners to distuiguish this. However, in the present tense ...でする (particle で) and ...です (copula) are distinct, while ...
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「だが」は単なる「が」に言い換えることができますか

このリンクにある「ちょっと〇〇するだけのつもりが、つい〇〇してしまった」の「つもりが」は実際は「つもりだが」の意味になっていると思えるんですけど、これは例外なのですか。それともどんな名詞の後ろにでも「だが」ではなく単に「が」が来られるということですか。 よろしくお願いします。
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2 votes
2 answers
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understanding であると同時に construction

やけに高く響くその靴音は、スバルにとって焦燥感の原因であると同時に、心の拠り所でもあった。 So I basically translate it as "For Subaru, those footsteps that echoed absurdly loud were, at the same time, the source of his impatience and also the ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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non sentence ending な in this comedic conversation

MC spots girls A and B who he recently got to know. C = childhood friend of MC. A「あ、先輩。こんにちは」 MC「おう、A。Bも一緒か」 B「何よ、アンタだってC先輩たちといつも一緒じゃない」 MC「何だよ、仲良いなって意味で言っただけだぞ」 B「...
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9 votes
2 answers
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Why is 高いです acceptable but 高いではあります not acceptable?

This interesting thread got me thinking about the various forms of the copula and how です is a contraction of で(は)あります. I am wondering why the standard X は Y で(は)あります does not seem to work for certain ...
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12 votes
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「です」, what is it really? Is my analysis correct?

At an elementary level, often, Japanese learners are taught that です is equivalent to the verb "to be" in English. Typical example: 私は学生です, I am a student. That's fine, after all, it works. And to ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Difference between である and だ in the written form

My grammar book states that である is used as copula in the written form to express ideas in a neutral fashion and that だ is also used in the written form to, quote, "sound more objective". But doesn't "...
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4 votes
2 answers
128 views

na-adjectives in different tenses. これは真面目だった人です。

I need some help with basic grammar. What is the difference between these sentences: これは真面目だった人です。 これは真面目な人でした。 これは真面目だった人でした。 Thank you in advance!
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0 votes
1 answer
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the meaning of で in 私は学生で友だちはいしゃです。 [duplicate]

Can anyone tell what で means in this sentence: 私は学生で友だちはいしゃです。Thank you. It looks like the で in this sentence means "and" but I'm not really sure.
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3 votes
3 answers
182 views

形容動詞 attributively before a noun: な or conjugated だ

So, I thought I understood the use of the 連体形 of だ, な, after a "な-adjective" when used before a noun, however I'm a bit confused. On IMABI and a number of other sites, I've found the suggestion to ...
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0 votes
1 answer
206 views

What dialect replaces です with a shorter version of it (ーす)?

The title pretty much explains itself, here is an example: Nio from Akuma no Riddle, the whole thing has been bugging me for awhile, thanks in advance.
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0 votes
1 answer
86 views

Question about で in this sentence

"「タクシーに乗る」は英語で、I ride a taxiで正解!?" I saw this question being posted on the web by someone and my issue is about the meaning of the sentence itself specifically the phrase "I ride a taxiで正解!?". Does ...
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1 vote
1 answer
120 views

Should emphasis follow the copula or move to the topic marker?

I recently tried machine translated the following: This is amazing. This is amazing. And was surprised when the result was: これは素晴らしいです。これは素晴らしいです。 I kind of expected the second example to come ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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"あの星があなたで" and "あの星はあなただ", between those two, what's the difference?

Both have the same meaning: "That star is you." But what makes them different? If it's the nuance, what exactly is it? Context: It's from a song's lyrics, the first one get sang first, whilst the ...
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1 answer
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Meaning of で Before a Conjunction [duplicate]

めったに~ない ~するのはほとんどない。 〔例〕店長【てんちょう】は優しい【やさしい】人【ひと】で、めったに怒らない【おこらない】。 'The store manager is a nice person and rarely gets angry.' What does で mean in this sentence?
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1 answer
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How to understand "で" and 献立 here?

原文は、 目黒にある「バランス食品」では、糖尿病患者やダイエット中の人向けのメニューが用意されている。 厳密なカロリー計算をした健康メニューで専門の栄養士が献立を考える。 厳密なカロリー計算をした健康メニューで専門の栄養士が献立を考える これを 厳密なカロリー計算をした健康メニューを通じて、専門の栄養士が献立を考える として理解してもいいですか。 そして、...
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0 votes
1 answer
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ことである in Japanese grammar

Do ことである and ことがある mean the same thing?
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0 votes
2 answers
76 views

Why is で necessary in the following sentence? [duplicate]

I used Google Translate to say "I'm not Korean." I expected something like: 私は韓国人はない However, I got this: 私は韓国人ではない Why is the で used in this situation?
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