Is this correct?

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b4d0m3n
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Is this correct?

Post by b4d0m3n » Mon 12.26.2005 9:29 pm

あなた は きれい な ひと でした、 と おもいます。

You were a beautiful person, I think.

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zengargoyle
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RE: Is this correct?

Post by zengargoyle » Mon 12.26.2005 10:19 pm

sounds good to me. only thing is i think this might be a case where past in japanese != past in english.

japanese past implies completion, think of how 分かりました is used. so i'd think this is: "You are a beautiful person." as opposed to: "You are a beautiful person. (right at this moment)"

something like that.

richvh
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RE: Is this correct?

Post by richvh » Mon 12.26.2005 11:43 pm

Only thing wrong I see is that でした should be in plain form, だった, or だ if you change it to present tense.
Richard VanHouten
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b4d0m3n
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RE: Is this correct?

Post by b4d0m3n » Tue 12.27.2005 3:37 am

Could you guys elaborate on your points? I'm not sure I quite understand what you mean. :)

richvh
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RE: Is this correct?

Post by richvh » Tue 12.27.2005 8:24 am

Only the final verb gets put into polite form (in this case, おもう -> おもいます. Verbs in dependent clauses (like でした, the past of です) should be in plain form. The plain form of です is だ, with a past form of だった.

I think that zengargoyle is trying to say that your phrase implies that you no longer are a beautiful person.

あなた は きれいな にと だ と おもいます。
I think that you are a beautiful person.
Richard VanHouten
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b4d0m3n
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RE: Is this correct?

Post by b4d0m3n » Tue 12.27.2005 8:45 am

Yup, I get it now. And, yes, my sentence implied that the person was beautiful, but no longer is. I was playing with tenses.

b4d0m3n
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RE: Is this correct?

Post by b4d0m3n » Tue 12.27.2005 9:01 am

Actually, relating to that, is there anywhere else I can read up on this specific grammatical rule? It just seems a tad strange to me. I've never actually encountered だ or だった before. Would the following be correct, then?

あなた は きれいな ひと だった、 と おもいます。

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mandolin
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RE: Is this correct?

Post by mandolin » Tue 12.27.2005 2:14 pm

da is the plain form declarative. It's a pain if you've taken a course or been using books that teach polite forms exclusively.

I have really enjoyed learning grammar from Tae Kim's site because he starts with the plain form. Go through the lessons (and temporarily suspend all your current knowledge of japanese as you do so).

For kanji readings, you can mouse over the kanji for a tooltip, to make the learning a little easier. It looks somewhat intimidating at first.

Tae Kim's Grammar

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