View topic - Grammar problem...x_x
"Yamashita san wa sensee desu. Mr. Yamashita is a teacher
Mearii san wa amerikajin desu Mary is an American
Note also that nouns like gakusee and sensee in the above examples stand alone, unlike their English translations "student" and "teacher," which are preceded by "a." In Japanese, there is no item that corresponds to "a," nor is there any item that corresponds to the plural "-s" at the end of a noun. Without background situations, a sentence like gakusee desu is therefore ambiguous between the singular and the plural interpretations; it may mean "We are/you are/ they are students," as well as "I am/you are/she is as student,"" 15, Genki.
Ok, well I underlined the last part because that's really what I'm trying to figure out x_x Any help would be much appreciated ^^
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Mary [topic marker] student [noun conjugation marker].
As for Mary, Student.
REAL ENGLISH: "Mary is a student."
The topic marker は is used to clear things up and make the sentence understandable. Since Japanese doesn't use pronouns very often and because there are no plurals or articles (a, the), a sentence can mean many things without the topic marker. So, let's throw Mary out of the sentence.
student [noun conjugation marker].
"I am a student."
"I am the student."
"You are a student."
"You are the student."
"He is a student."
"He is the student."
"She is a student."
"She is the student."
"We are students."
"We are the students."
"They are students."
"They are the students."
That one sentence can mean all those things, which is what your book is telling you. Since there's no natural way to say "I, you, he, she, it, we or they" or even "am, is, or are", Japanese falls back on specificying a topic everytime you need one, to clarify what it is you're talking about.
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Mearii san wa amerikajin desu. Gakusei desu.
Mary is an American. She is a student.
Watashi wa 16 sai desu. Gakusei desu.
I am 16 years old. I am a student.
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