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33

「彼{かれ}ら は 自分{じぶん} の 事{こと} しか 考{かんが}えて いません。」 While the translation: "They only think of themselves." is a valid one in the sense that it successfully conveys the basic meaning of the original, it can also be highly misleading as far as the grammatical understanding of the original. The original Japanese sentence is indeed in the negative form even ...


19

Negative Polarity Items (NPIs) in English Every language has lexical items which are restricted, seemingly arbitrarily, to specific contexts. Let's start with some English sentences to introduce the concept: ​1a. I don't like her at all. ​1b. *I like her at all. The first sentence is fine, but the second sentence doesn't work because at all is a ...


18

Your "usual rule" is incomplete. It should be: drop -i if resulting is a single mora in length, add -sa add -sou. Hence, nai: na na + sa na + sa + sou --> nasasou. atui: atu (not applicable) atu + sou --> atusou.


15

The ん negative ending is a contraction of sorts of classical negative ending ぬ, precursor to modern ない. It's still pretty common. As illustration of this, the Microsoft IME gives 食べん as a valid conversion option after typing in taben, or 飲まん for noman. Note that する with the negative ん is not しん, but instead せん, as again the negative ん is from classical ぬ, ...


15

This sentence can technically mean both, but it usually (or almost always) means 1. To mean 2., we normally say 彼は来ないことを知りませんでした。 = He didn't know about the (someone else's) absense. because 彼 is the topic of the whole sentence. In other words, the use of が after 彼 more or less indicates that "彼がこない" is the relative clause which modifies こと.


14

This is a pair of polarity items. One appears in positive contexts, the other in negative: イギリスの ジャムは とても おいしいです。 イギリスの ジャムは あまり おいしくありません。 Every language has words like these. For example, in English: I like pie, too. I don't like pie, either. Here, too and either are polarity items. In our positive sentence we use too, and in our negative ...


13

Both ず and ぬ came from the archaic negator ず in Heian period. The ず had conjugations ず (未然), ず (連用), ず (終止), ぬ (連体) and ね (仮定), as every Japanese learns in high school today. The ぬ was originally the 連体形 (noun modifying form) of ず. After that, spoken Japanese lost the distinction between 連体形 and 終止形 in almost all cases. So, now we use ぬ or its variant ん as ...


13

Here's where 歩けなく comes from: Start with the verb 歩く, "to walk". Turn it into its potential form: 歩ける, "able to walk". Make it negative: 歩けない, "unable to walk". Turn the newly formed i-adjective into an adverb: 歩けなく. Now, なっちゃう is a shorter form of なって + しまう. なって, of course, is the -て form of なる, which means "to become". なる requires that the adjective ...


12

Actually, you've already got the right answer! The verb in question is する, and one of its negative stems (未然形) is せ〜, as in せず, せぬ, and as you've just discovered, せん. The other negative stem of する is the well-known し〜. Note that these are not interchangeable: **せない is ungrammatical, as is **しず. The only verbs that have this extra negative stem are する and ...


12

You can add focus particles like は or も to verbs, but in order to do so, you have to split the verb into two parts so that the particle has some place to go. We'll split the verb into its continuative stem (called 連用形 in Japanese) and the verb する. For example:   忘れる   → 忘れ+する   忘れる+も = 忘れもする Or:   忘れない   → 忘れ+しない   忘れない+は = 忘れはしない Your example is a ...


10

Arguing about whether certain words "are" something or other is missing the point in this context, I think. We do not classify words based on some innate, a priori nature that we discern within them. We classify them based on behaviour. And there is no a priori set of standards for that classification either: we have to choose our own. It's completely ...


10

Using the terms from snailboat's link: Not [force doing] He didn't have me wash the dishes (but I washed them because I was bored). Similar to → He did not force me to wash the dishes. Force [not doing] He had me not wash the dishes (because I'm really clumsy). Similar to → He forced me to not wash the dishes. Verbs in the form 〜せなかった/〜せませんでした are ...


10

There are at least three types of omission of く, which should be distinguished. The "traditional western" euphoric change is called ウ音便 and is described in this question, this one and a chart in this page. ku becomes (y)u, etc. This sounds old-fashioned and elegant. While this is commonly heard in samurai dramas, only a few courteous elder people use this ...


9

Modern Japanese is very different from archaic Japanese (and some modern formal written Japanese, which is itself rather archaic) in regard to the topic at hand. Initially there were distinct conjugations of verbs and adjectives known as predicative and attributive. Predicative (also called conclusive) was used for the final verb in a sentence, and was ...


9

"Does anyone know what to call the outdated, high form of language which will say for example "ならぬ" rather than "ならない" or more accurately "だめだ"?" We call it 「[文語体]{ぶんごたい}」 or 「文語[調]{ちょう}」("Literary style") as opposed to 「[口語体]{こうごたい}」 or 「口語調」 ("Colloquial style"). "Specifically, I would like to know if there is a name for the dialect used by Kuchiki ...


9

If sentence A has a comma like: A: 宿題をして、行かない生徒が多いです。 B: 宿題をしないで行く生徒が多いです。 then Sjiveru is right. However, it doesn't have a comma, so they have the same meaning. They mean "There are many students who go without doing their homework." The して行かない doesn't mean "don't go" but "don't do their homework."


9

「おまえ、そんな体験したこともねぇのにわかったようなこと言うなっ」 How can I know? When it's spoken, you could easily tell the difference by the pitch accent: わかったようなこと[言うな]{LHL} ← negative imperative わかったようなこと[言うな]{LHH} ← mild emphasis, emotion But in writing it could be ambiguous. So I'd write it as 「言うなっ!」or 「言うなよ」 etc. to clearly show that it's negative imperative. To clearly ...


9

According to Shogakukan's big 国{こく}語{ご}大{だい}辞{じ}典{てん}, the verb ending -masu ultimately derived from a combination of humble polite auxiliary verb 参{まい}る plus the verb する, as a shift from either ‑mairasuru or possibly ‑maisuru. The final ‑su in modern ‑masu conjugates identically to classical su / suru. The 未然形{みぜんけい} ("...


9

「お/ご + Verb in 連用形{れんようけい} (continuative form) + なく 」 should be learned as a set phrase meaning "Please do not (verb)." The grammar used here is sort of special. One might say a phrase like 「お願{ねが}いいたします」 is implied or left unsaid at the end. This is an honorific form of a polite request rather than a plain imperative. The honorific お/ご at the beginning ...


9

That ん isn't a shortening of ぬ, it's a shortening of the auxiliary む. According to Classical Japanese rules, the negative ~ぬ is the 連体形 of ~ず. This means it is used to modify nouns. In particular, you cannot end a sentence with it, so that means that this ん cannot be an abbreviation of ~ぬ. In modern Japanese, the distinction between 連体形 and 終止形 has been ...


8

Other samples from this character in your manga would be helpful to confirm this, but my guess is that せん is equivalent to しない (and possibly derived from せぬ, see Zhen Lin's comment below). Then, 苦労せん means something like "don't worry" or "don't fret". This is really part of the group of dialects from 'Western Japan'. In particular, [九州弁]{きゅうしゅうべん} uses せんで ...


8

In Japanese, a 助動詞 is a conjugatable particle, as opposed to 助詞 which do not conjugate. Like noun, verb etc, 助動詞 is now considered a part of of speech. The terminology is rather unfortunate, but originally (early Meiji) it was sub-classified under the category of verb (動詞). This is due to the influence of English in which 助動詞 represents "auxiliary verbs" ...


8

I am no longer sure about the reason why 食べなさ sounds strange. In the answer below, I argued that 食べなさ “the degree of not eating” would be grammatically fine but semantically not useful in any context. However, as dainichi commented, this explanation is questionable. For example, different people have different “degrees of not eating vegetables”; some may ...


8

This usage of いる is unrelated to its usual function as a grammar element. 〜ている 食事を食べている "I am eating my meal" (progressive) "I eat meals" (habitual) ?? "I eat my meal and I am here (/I exist)" (conjunction) Reading #3 is never used because no one would ever need to say that. I included it only to show that the て-form does normally perform a ...


8

That なにも is a Guiding Adverb that leads partial negation. It means nothing by itself but functions as a sign that tells that partial negation is following. It's different from normal なに+も ((not) anything) in the point of pitch accent. [なにも{HLL} vs なに{LH}+も{H}] e.g. 何も、急がなくてもいいじゃないか You don't need to hurry, do you? Other examples of Guiding Adverbs are もし(...


8

Seeing this particular phrase 力なくなく for the first time myself, I cannot think of it as anything else but a kind of 畳語 (reduplicated words/phrases) version of the adverbial phrase 力無く (without strength; limply, exhaustedly), with the meaning unchanged. Using 力なくなく as double negative (i.e. not without strength) would be pushing it both grammatically and ...


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