25

Modal vs. Present Tense vs. Past Tense 「[美人]{びじん}じゃなくて[悪]{わる}かったですね!」 = "Too bad I'm not such a beauty!" That is called 「ムードの『た』」 = the "modal 'ta'", not the past tense 'ta'. It is used when one's expectation has just matched or failed to match reality. The female speaker of the sentence above knows that the male listener has expected her to be pretty,...


15

Axel Svahn has written about this construction in detail, including summaries of other scholars' viewpoints: Imperative -ta in colloquial Japanese: A descriptive analysis (Bachelors' thesis, 2007) The perfective imperative in Japanese (Masters' thesis, 2009) That second one in particular is well worth reading if you are interested in this subject. It ...


14

無理だったんだ is straightforward, it's a combination of 無理だった ("was impossible") and the explanatory-の. "So it is that it was impossible", "Because it was not possible", "(I failed but) it was impossible (in the first place)", etc. 無理なんだった is usually interpreted as a combination of 無理なんだ ("it's that it's impossible"; present tense) and discovery-た. "(Ah, I've ...


13

Finally I found an explanation that possibly answers at least your original question. This usage of "past tense" is called 発見の「た」 (ta for discovery) or ムードの「た」 (modal ta). Most articles about this are written in Japanese, but here's an article written in English: Another Function of the Ta-form: Discovery and Recall In a nutshell, my understanding is that ...


12

のだ at the end of a sentence is usually what you called “explanation modality”. (whether it's explanation or not.) のではない is often used to make a partial negative statement. This may be a over-simplification, but I can't think of a good explanation of its function. The の works like a nominalizer or a quote mark. If you say 俺はやらなかった, it means I didn't do it. ...


12

It's widely used in Kanto and Tohoku regions to a varying degree. Stereotyped Tohoku dialect uses っぺ instead of べ(ー), though. 東京方言 伝統的な関東方言・東北方言では意思・同意・推量の語尾は「べ(え)」であり、「行くべ」や「これだべ」「これだんべ」「これだっぺ」などと言うが、東京方言では「行こう」や「これだろ(う)」と言う。「う・よう」の使用が広まる以前は江戸でも「べ(え)」を多用し、当時上方の人間から「関東べい」と呼ばれていた。


12

(I know what "から" and the sentence-ending "か" mean, but not this) Yes, it's this から followed by this か. から here is a reason/cause marker. か is a question marker but is used like "presumably" or "probably" here. And 興奮 is "excitement", not "doubtful interest". 興奮: excitement 興奮から: due to his excitement, ... 興奮からか: presumably due to his excitement, ...; ...


11

「たぶん」は、英語の maybe よりずっと可能性が高いと思います。「たぶん」は probably に近いと思います。70~80%くらいの確率(あるいは90%?)かな?と思います。 明鏡国語辞典によると・・・ たぶん【多分】 二 〘副詞〙 《多く下に推量を表す語を伴って》断定はできないが、そうである可能性が高いという話‌​し手の気持ちを表す。おそらく。おおかた。たいてい。 "Will you marry me?" に "Maybe." と返事されたら普通はがっかりしますけど、「結婚してくれる?」に「たぶん。」と言われたらそんなにがっかりしない(どちらかというと嬉しい)と思います。 「たぶん治ります。」と言われた病気が、実は治る可能性は50%だった…とかだったら、きっと怒ってしまいます。...


9

First of all, the auxiliary-かねる, or かぬ in archaic Japanese, meaning "cannot", is almost never written with the kanji 兼 today. I personally have never seen something like 言い兼ねる, and I have believed the verb 兼ねる and the auxiliary-かねる are two different words. Second, the history of auxiliary-かぬ is very old, and even 万葉集 has examples of it. 世間乎 宇之等夜佐之等 於母倍杼母 ...


8

You can definitely personify objects in Japanese. 慣性のある物体は運動状態を維持したがる is not wrong per se, but firstly, it's obvious to the listener that a personification is going on, and secondly, the colloquial feeling that the personification creates might not go well with the scientific feel of the rest of the sentence. A more natural translation might be ...


8

Comment In my experience, once you get to this level it is sometimes easier to understand these intuitively because you can understand a lot from the context and the way the person says the phrase. Breaking them down can get quite complicated because grammatically there is a lot going on: I have given two ways to analyse 〜たんじゃない but I think they both ...


8

Both きっと and さぞ are adverbs of epistemic modality (which means they express a type of uncertainty), but they're different in a number of ways: Level of certainty. きっと is more certain than さぞ. Frequency. きっと is significantly more common than さぞ. Register. きっと is normal in conversation. I've been told by more than one native speaker that さぞ sounds ...


7

みんべえ is a collapsed pronunciation of みるべえ or みるべ. る in verbs often contracts to ん in colloquial speech when followed by some words, eg: [何]{なに}[見]{み}てるのよ! → [何]{なに}[見]{み}てんのよ! バカなことするなよ。 → バカなことすんなよ。 みる here is a subsidiary verb (補助動詞) and means "try doing~~". The べえ is a prolonged べ. べ is a sentence-final particle (終助詞) mainly used in Tohoku ...


7

You should think of this like から+か. If there wasn't a か, the following would just be a statement of a fact. The から is used to give the reason for the unusual fluency of the foreigner (in this case it is because the foreigner was excited/agitated). 興奮から銀髪の外国人の口調は、いつになく流暢だった。 With the か, the speaker is no longer certain for the reason. The speaker is now ...


6

彼はぜひ日本人です。 is not acceptable, I'm afraid. You use ぜひ this way: ぜひ参加してください。 'please' (for invitation/request) ぜひ参加させていただきます。 'by all means' (when accepting offer) 彼はきっと日本人です。 sounds fine. 'I believe he's Japanese' / 'I'm sure he's Japanese'. 彼は必ず日本人です。 is not acceptable. 必ず is used this way: 必ず来ます。 'without fail' (for future action) 寝る前に必ず歯を磨く。 'never fail ...


6

Needless to say, both have the same meaning and both are informal. ちょっと待って is more versatile in that basically anyone, regardless of age, gender and other general characteristics of the speaker, can use it in nearly all informal situations where one wants to ask another person to wait a second. ちょっと待った fairly strictly chooses the speakers and situations. ...


6

かな can state any degree of probability, from nearly zero to all but certain. Another important feature is that かな conveys intent of communication, thus it could imply request or desire so much as English "I wonder". This word is usually only used in non-polite sentences (in most cases, the polite counterpart is でしょうか). Down to your particular case, the ...


6

A good way to do this is to use the construct Conditional + いいのに. For example: トラだったらいいのに I wish I were a tiger もっと背が高ければよかったのに I wish I were taller その車を買うのに十分なお金があったらいいのに I wish I had enough money to buy that car きれいだったらいいのに I wish she looked pretty It's a pretty simple construct, and any conditional form can work.


6

いかん in this sentence means "no good", "of no use", "it sucks", etc. It's adding the speaker's feeling about the mentioned fact (左右される). いかん is almost a lexicalized expression, and it is also used like English "oops", "don't do it" or "oh my gosh". It sounds a little pompous or dialectal. Related: What does ても+いかん do? Meaning of いかんしょ in following sentence ...


5

私がではない。あれほど冷酷な魔術師だった男が、敵を助けたという事実こそが不快だった。 The が in 私が is the case particle as a subject marker. 'I did not. / It was not I (who saved my enemy).' It was the 男(=切嗣) that saved his enemy (= me = 言峰), not the other way around, and 言峰 is saying that it was 不快 to him. Source: http://www26.atwiki.jp/tmranking/pages/51.html breakdown: が= 格助詞/case particle で= ...


5

they all have different uses. かもしれない is used at the end of a sentence to say "it might" or "maybe" (20-40%) 彼は野球の試合に行くかもしれない。 He might go to the baseball game. たぶん is used as a prefix to say "probably," or "maybe" (75% or above) 野球の試合行きますか? うん、多分。 Are you going to go the baseball game? Yeah, probably. もしかしたら is closer to "if" ...


5

What I'm really interested in is where よかろう came from. At first glance, it seemed like some crazy old volitional form (行こう!), but It seems kind of ridiculous for there to be a volitional form of an adjective. Why ridiculous? い-adectives in Japanese have conjugations. よかろう is 良かろう、 derived from いい or よい. It's rather the "monologue" meaning of よかろう, more ...


5

This しなければなりません just means "must", "need to", "have to". And that's the only meaning of しなければなりません. この会に来たインドの人は「日本にいろいろ教えてもらって、早く空気をきれいにしなければなりません」と話していました。 An Indian person who came to the meeting said, "[I] have to make the air (of India) clean after Japan taught a lot of things to [me]." An Indian person who came to the meeting said, "[We ...


4

I haven't seen the show, so I'm uncertain of the context, but かな refers to "probably" in the translation. Ending a sentence with かな is a very casual way of expressing uncertainty. For example: あの人はアメリカ人かな。 I wonder if that person is an American. It's subtle, but "probably" might be a slightly too "certain" translation in this case (but again, ...


4

~させてあげる is perfectly correct, but in your context (i.e., to sound firm, bossy...) I think you could use やる instead of あげる, as in: よし。そいつを殺させてやる。はははは And, as stated in the comment by @Yuuichi, 借りしてもいい is not correct. You'd say 借りてもいい, or お借りしてもいい in 謙譲語/humble language. (Examples of the humble 「お + 連用形 (continuative form) + する」 form: 借りる ⇒ お借りする, 届ける ⇒ ...


4

I, a native speaker, would panic, too, if I had to use one of those "textbook phrases of obligations" to say something as casual as "After doing A, you gotta do B." to explain something about a game. I would sound like a robot if I used any of the three phrases you listed. What many native speakers would say to a friend in this kind of situation would be ...


4

くださねば is くださなければ written in 文語 (classical Japanese). ねばねば食べねば, relation between ねば and なければ Help me to understand やらなきゃいけない and やらなきゃならない 私が直接手をくださねばなるまい。 I would not help doing it myself. よもや is a negative polarity item (i.e., expects a negative predicate after it). From 明鏡国語辞典: よも‐や 副 《多く打ち消しを伴って》 ほとんどありえないという気持ちを表す。まさか。いくらなんでも。万が一にも。「━...


3

きっと〜だろう If you were to say (きっと)お腹が空いている alone, it would sound as if you're talking about someone other than the person you're talking to (or that you're accusing the person you're talking to of not understanding their own senses -- "You are (definitely) hungry." has more or less the same connotations in English, I think.) Basically, it's weird to talk ...


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