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Why is a verb in the past (た形) contradicted with ~ていない?

@snailplane introduced this interesting article to me! 山下 好孝. テンスの「た」とアスペクトの「た」 (PDF) 初級日本語教科書では「~ましたか」の質問に対して,「~ていません」と答えるのを初級の学習者に導入する時は、「もう」と「まだ」を教える時である。(略) しかし、実際は、去年のことやもっと昔のことを開いても、「~ていません」「...
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20 votes
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Is 「たくなった」 a typo or a grammatical structure that is different than I think it is?

逃げたくなった is: 逃げる = "to flee", in its stem form (連用形) → 逃げ ~たい = the suffix that expresses wanting to do, conjugated to ~たく (again, the 連用形) なる = "to become", in past tense → なった So this means ...
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16 votes
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How do you say "I have been [...]"?

「〜いる」 primer Japanese is honestly far more simple than English when it comes to aspect. In Japanese, the rule is that 「〜いる」 means you are currently (or will be) in some state related to the verb, ...
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Non conventional usage of the past tense

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 ...
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14 votes
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The past tense for the quoting particle って

The quoting particle と (or って) is tenseless, just as the quotation marks " for direct speech (she said "I want to sing"), or that for indirect speech (she said that she wanted to sing) are tenseless. ...
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13 votes
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Past tense and ~と思う

このような書き方では(わかってもらえない) 「(こんな/このようなetc.)XXでは」 is usually used with a negative word or a phrase with a negative meaning. ◎このような書き方では、わからない。 ◎このような書き方では、わかりにくい。 ◎このような書き方では、わかってもらえない。 ✖このような書き方では、わかりやすい/...
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10 votes
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Still confused with tenses

As for your broken TV, all sentences are correct and are emphasizing different aspects of your problem. Let me give some loose translations and try to illustrate the differences. テレビが壊れているから、...
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10 votes
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Must I use past tense before 後?

This た doesn't mean "past" but "completion". It isn't unnatural that た which means "completion" is used in things in the future. So 明日は、朝ご飯を食べた後、学校に行く is correct.
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10 votes
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Are Japanese "tenses" aspects in disguise?

The real lie is in the assumption that the Japanese language is genetically related to Chinese. There is long cultural contact, and heavy lexical/morphological borrowing, but the underlying structures ...
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9 votes
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Why 入った and not 入た past tense

tl;dr 入る hairu is a consonant-stem verb, i.e. hair·u. Long version Besides a handful of exceptions, there are two type of verbs vowel-stem verbs (-e·ru, -i·ru) consonant-stem verbs (-k·u, -g·u, -s·u, ...
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9 votes

How does one differentiate between future tense (will) and present tense?

If I am not mistaken, the above sentence can either mean "I will eat fish" or "I eat fish". Correct. ... conjugating the verb to the ます form only aims to make the sentence polite ...
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8 votes
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how to use ~そう past tense

Yes, 疲れそう means "It looks tiresome" rather than "You look tired". To say "You look tired", you can say 疲れていそう or 疲れてそう using the subsidiary verb いる. Other ways to say similar things are 「お疲れですか」, 「...
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8 votes
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Why does 疲れた translate to the present tense

疲れる is not an unusual verbal, so there is no need to identify verbals like it. Rather, understanding how Japanese expressions tend to be expressions of changes of state will help with interpreting ...
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8 votes
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past tense na adjective + noun

Part of the confusion appears to arise from the fact that your two "sentences" are actually incomplete. 私の友達は綺麗な人 私の友達は綺麗だった人 These are fragments: they are only phrases, not full sentences. They ...
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8 votes
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"I have become sleepy, because I did not sleep much last night"textbook wrong translation?

This question is fantastic for studying tense. I'll start with the English, then go to the Japanese. I have become sleepy, because I did not sleep much last night. I think that we can agree that ...
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8 votes
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Can みたい refer to a clause in the past?

Yes you can use みたい after the past tense of a verb, but the copula after みたい does not have to be in the past tense. 昨日、雨が降ったみたいです。 (Looking at the ground) It seems like it rained yesterday. ...
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8 votes
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Possible explanation for the ている-form also being used as past tense?

There are a couple of things going on here, so let's try and tease them apart. "I haven't eaten yet" is not past tense in English. Past tense in English would be "I didn't eat." There is overlap ...
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7 votes

Is た形 required when using 自動詞 as an adjective?

You can, but the meaning will change. Basically, you can use 辞書形 (dictionary), た形 (perfective), 可能形 (potential) verb phrases, and of course all of their negative forms, to modify a noun. 【辞書形】飛ぶ{とぶ}...
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Why does native speakers rather say 言う通り not 言った通り?

The same reason that in English you can say 'like you say'. If someone says 'I had maabou doufu last night and it was amazingly delicious', and some time later you decide to try it yourself and agree,...
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7 votes

Can I use やめた instead of やめる in this sentence?

Assuming "I" as the subject, The latter sentence, 会社をやめたかもしれません, means "I may have quit my company." simply because やめた is the ta-form (past tense) of やめる. Such a sentence is uncommon, but can be used:...
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7 votes
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Tense in noun modifying clauses?

In this case past tense 見た人 is correct and it's irrelevant if it's a person or an inanimate object. But there are more points to be careful about in your sentence: no need to use に after the 昨日 いる ...
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7 votes

Are Japanese "tenses" aspects in disguise?

It is a bit controversial whether Japanese really has tenses or aspects, but it may be more correct to think of them as aspects, as Japanese tends to refer to changes in state. Either way, there are ...
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Meaning of 疑問を胸に取材を進める

First of all, you're translating 取材 as "interview" in your question, but it's actually a much broader word than that. It refers to the whole process of gathering information for a report or article, ...
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7 votes

Why 入った and not 入た past tense

The name "ru verb" is misleading. This does not mean that every verb ending in -ru conjugates the same way. Certain verbs end in -ru, and that final -ru disappears in entirety when conjugating. ...
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Tense and conjugation: いないみたいでした v.s. いなかったみたいでした

The Japanese language is based on relative tense. In your case, you have to choose みたいです ("seems") and みたいでした ("seemed") simply based on the time of your observation, but いない and いなかった are relative to ...
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6 votes
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Conditional counter-factual, main verb past vs nonpast?

Present 安ければ買います Has this got two opposing meanings, or is it simple less-specific (or specific in another way) compared to English? We could express the meaning as: when cheap → buy If we turn to ...
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