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Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby Ranja » Tue 07.02.2013 3:08 am

Why do we use "欲しがっている" and not "欲しがる"? Is it the same like we usually use "知っている" and not "知る"?


Slightly different. "知る" is an action (acquiring the knowledge) and "知っている" is a status (having the knowledge).
In this case, it is like "to jog (every monring)" and "is jogging (right now)".

Since you are asking who wants this present at this particular moment, you need to use "欲しがっている".
欲しがる is used in a sentence like
ディナーのあとは いつも アイスクリームを欲しがる (always wants an ice cream after dinner)

As for the very formal sentence "だれがこのプレゼントをほっしていますか", how did you get "ほっしています"? Is it some kind of verb conjugation, and the actual root verb is still 欲しがる?


ほっする (or ほっす in Old Japanese) is the root verb. It is virtually never used in conversation.
You can find it frequently used in the translations of classical Chinese literature such as The Analects of Confucius.

漢文: 子曰、君子欲訥於言、而敏於行。
かきくだし文: 子曰わく、君子は言に訥にして、行に敏ならんと欲す
よみ:  し いわく、くんしは げんにとつにして、こうにびんならんと ほっす
English translation: The Master said, 'The superior man wishes to be slow in his speech and earnest in his conduct.'
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby FlameHaze » Tue 07.02.2013 10:47 am

Since you have been so helpful, I hope you don't mind helping me with a few more questions. Sorry to trouble you. :sweatdrop:

1. What's the difference between "向く" and "向かう"?
2. What's the difference between "やめる" and "とめる"? Do they share the same kanji which is "止める"? As far as I see, "とめる" is used for solid objects such as cars, while "やめる" is used for abstract objects such as speeches, actions. Is that true?
3. Since we have transitive and intransitive verbs of the same meaning, such as "集める" and "集まる", do the sentences "私は古い時計を集める" and "私は古い時計が集まる" mean the same? The second one sounds kinda weird to me.
4. For verbs such as "向く","振り向く", when we are turning into a direction, do we use へ or を? So far the examples I came upon used "を"
5. What's the difference between "引き出す"and "出す"?

It's a lot of questions. Thanks in advance. :D
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby Ranja » Fri 07.05.2013 7:55 am

1. What's the difference between "向く" and "向かう"?

向く means 'to turn into that direction', whereas "向かう" means 'to turn into that direction, and move forward to that direction or do something actively to that direction'.

・北を向く turn to the north
・北へ向かう go to the north

A. かべ(=wall)を向いて話す
B. かべに向かって話す
A. describes merely that the person is looking toward the wall while speaking/talking.
B. implies that there might be somebody on the other side of the wall (the next room in a jail?), or he may be practicing a play of Shakespeare with a picture on the wall as a partner.

2. What's the difference between "やめる" and "とめる"? Do they share the same kanji which is "止める"? As far as I see, "とめる" is used for solid objects such as cars, while "やめる" is used for abstract objects such as speeches, actions. Is that true?

No, I don't think so.
やめる is quit doing something, often permanently and based on one's own will, that one has been doing for a certain amout of time.
The person who quits something is the same person who was doing it.
So, くるまをやめる can mean 'return the driver license and never drive again' rather than 'stop the car'.

・工場は真空管(しんくうかん)の生産をやめた. The factory stopped the production of vacuum tubes (probably for ever).
・工場はLCDの生産をとめた (This implies stopping temporarily. Something happened to the nearby power plant?)

3. Since we have transitive and intransitive verbs of the same meaning, such as "集める" and "集まる", do the sentences "私は古い時計を集める" and "私は古い時計が集まる" mean the same? The second one sounds kinda weird to me.

Yes, weird. Do you think "collecting stamps" is the same as "Stamps get together"?

4. For verbs such as "向く","振り向く", when we are turning into a direction, do we use へ or を? So far the examples I came upon used "を"

Both へ and を can be used. But へ is often used when the *directional object* is somewhat abstract such as West and East.
・西(=west)を向く
・西へ向く
・うしろを振り向く (look behind)
・風が吹いて来た方へ振り向く(=かぜがふいてきたほうへふりむく)

5. What's the difference between "引き出す"and "出す"?

出す is a very versatile verb. Its basic meaning is to move something from inside to outside to make it visible.
See this for other possible meanings.
http://eow.alc.co.jp/search?q=%e5%87%ba%e3%81%99

引き出す is literarly ひく='pull' (often with some effort) + 出す, thus it means 'to pull out'.
It is also used to express 'to withdraw money from bank'.

・答えを出す get the answer
・答えを引き出す elicit the answer
Last edited by Ranja on Sat 07.06.2013 4:02 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby SomeCallMeChris » Fri 07.05.2013 4:56 pm

Ranja wrote:・答えを出す get the answer
・答えを引き出す elicit the answer

I think this was just a typo, but I believe you meant
答えを出す - give the answer

(ie,
Aさんが答えをだした - A answered someone's question ;
Aさんが答えを引き出した - A got an answer from someone else)
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby Ranja » Fri 07.05.2013 8:47 pm

Right. I was searching a case where 'get' is used in English but '出' is used in Japanese, but I think I have mixed it up with 「答えが出た。」, which uses 出る(でる) instead of 出す(だす).
Thank you for correcting me.
Last edited by Ranja on Sat 07.20.2013 7:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby SomeCallMeChris » Fri 07.05.2013 9:25 pm

No worries. This is a messy bit of English.

John got an answer to his question -> John was answered by somebody.
John got the right answer to the question -> John answered a question correctly.

Sometimes 'get the answer' is used for the second kind of case too, unfortunately, so you have to rely on context. You may have seen examples like that. But without context, the first case is the one that springs to mind.
(Is it always 'an' in the first case and always 'the' in the second case... ? I'm not sure. I feel like that's a good guideline but not 'always'.)

I'm not sure I know what 答えが出た means. It looks like the answer simply appears on its own ('The question was answered' or such). Does it imply anything at all about who produced the answer and who heard it?
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby Ranja » Sat 07.06.2013 3:34 am

答えが出た means 'I've got the right answer', 'I found the (an?) answer' or 'I've made up my mind', depending on the context, of course.

A. 私はエンジニアになるべきか、それとも医者になるべきか。(Should I become an engineer or a doctor?)
B. その答えは自分で出さなくてはいけない。(You must find out the (or an?) answer for yourself. Here, the verb used is 出す(だす) not 出る(でる).)
----after thinking for a while
B. 答えは出た?
A. はい。答えが出ました。私は医者になります(I will be a doctor.)。

In the above example, you may replace 出す and 出る with 見つける and 見つかる, respectively.
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby FlameHaze » Sat 07.06.2013 6:24 am

Thank you for your kind assistance, I appreciate it a lot. :D It's helpful to have a native Japanese speaker enlightening me when am just at the beginning steps of learning Japanese. I'm about to finish Minna no Nihongo book 1 (the new edition), currently at chapter 24 and will probably re-read the whole book again before starting out on book 2. I realise I have to read more to enrich my vocab and also to speak Japanese naturally, planning to start reading light novels. Or do you have any recommendations?

Just a few more questions.
1. "止める" stands for "やめる", "とめる" or both?
2. What's the difference between "助かる" and "助けられる"?
3. I often come across the phrase in animes which sounds something like "何があってんだよ". Does the "あって" come from the verb "ある"? Does it literally mean "what are you doing", "what's happening"?
4. Do we say "答えは見つけた" or "答えは見つかった? Or does it depend on context?
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby Ranja » Sun 07.07.2013 4:40 am

1. "止める" stands for "やめる", "とめる" or both?

Both. Mostly we can distinguish them by the context. But it is advisable to use Hiragana.

2. What's the difference between "助かる" and "助けられる"?

助けられる is the passive case of 助ける(=to help/save).
助かる is an intransitive verb and has two meanings:
・be helpful (Though the subject of the verb (often hidden) is the person who profits.)
・be left unharmed from death, pain, or various sufferings.
The second meaning bears little relation to 'help'.

3. I often come across the phrase in animes which sounds something like "何があってんだよ". Does the "あって" come from the verb "ある"? Does it literally mean "what are you doing", "what's happening"?


I guess it is "なにやってんだよ?" (What the devil are you doing?)
なにをやっているのだ(よ) is its non-contracted form (though still impolite).
やって < やる = an impolite version of する

4. Do we say "答えは見つけた" or "答えは見つかった? Or does it depend on context?


・答えを見つけた/答えは見つけた
・答えが見つかった/答えは見つかった
You can say all of these depending on the context.
When to use は instead of を or が is difficult to explain. You need to learn it from a lot of Japanese reading.
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby furrykef » Sun 07.07.2013 12:37 pm

Ranja wrote:
2. What's the difference between "助かる" and "助けられる"?

助けられる is the passive case of 助ける(=to help/save).

It's also the potential form. So it can mean either "is helped" or "can help". (By the way, I wouldn't use the word "case" there because it has a fairly strict meaning in linguistics.)
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby FlameHaze » Sun 07.07.2013 1:29 pm

Ranja wrote:
2. What's the difference between "助かる" and "助けられる"?

助けられる is the passive case of 助ける(=to help/save).
助かる is an intransitive verb and has two meanings:
・be helpful (Though the subject of the verb (often hidden) is the person who profits.)
・be left unharmed from death, pain, or various sufferings.
The second meaning bears little relation to 'help'.



I see. I thought tasukaru meant "is saved" and was wondering what difference it had from "tasukerareru" which also meant "is saved". Can you possibly give a few example sentences of how to use "tasukaru"?
....And, intransitive verbs don't have passive form, do they? I simply can't think of how it could happen.
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby furrykef » Sun 07.07.2013 7:41 pm

It's true that there's heavy overlap between 助かる and 助けられる, and 助かる tends to be preferred when it can be used. But I believe you would usually use 助けられる when you want to name the agent (i.e. the person who did the helping/saving), like 彼に助けられた, though I am by no means 100% certain.

Also I think 助けられる emphasizes the action and and 助かる emphasizes the state. You shout 助かった! when you're rescued because you're elated that you're now safe.

FlameHaze wrote:....And, intransitive verbs don't have passive form, do they? I simply can't think of how it could happen.

Actually they do. The Japanese passive has much broader use than the passive voice in most other languages. Japanese has the "adversative passive", typically used to indicate something unfortunate (especially, but not only, to convey the speaker's dismay or frustration), and the "honorific passive", which is when the passive form is used to "elevate" the actions of another person. Both of these can be used with intransitive verbs.

Do note that 助けられる is from the transitive verb 助ける, not 助かる, so it can be used as a true passive.
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby FlameHaze » Sun 07.07.2013 11:58 pm

furrykef wrote:It's true that there's heavy overlap between 助かる and 助けられる, and 助かる tends to be preferred when it can be used. But I believe you would usually use 助けられる when you want to name the agent (i.e. the person who did the helping/saving), like 彼に助けられた, though I am by no means 100% certain.

Also I think 助けられる emphasizes the action and and 助かる emphasizes the state. You shout 助かった! when you're rescued because you're elated that you're now safe.

FlameHaze wrote:....And, intransitive verbs don't have passive form, do they? I simply can't think of how it could happen.

Actually they do. The Japanese passive has much broader use than the passive voice in most other languages. Japanese has the "adversative passive", typically used to indicate something unfortunate (especially, but not only, to convey the speaker's dismay or frustration), and the "honorific passive", which is when the passive form is used to "elevate" the actions of another person. Both of these can be used with intransitive verbs.

Do note that 助けられる is from the transitive verb 助ける, not 助かる, so it can be used as a true passive.


I see. Yep, I do know tasukerareru is the passive form of tasukeru, thanks.

For the passive form of intransitive verbs, not something I should be frying my brain over when I've just finished N5 level eh? :sweatdrop: I tried reading someone explaining the use of the honourific form, "korareru" and almost fainted. :colonthree: I'll just let it drop for now lol.
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby Ranja » Mon 07.08.2013 12:27 am

Alright, I'll give you some examples of 助かる.

In the first meaning:

・あなたが しばふを 刈ってくれて とても助かりました。It was very helpful of you to mow the lawn. (Literally, I profited because you mowed the lawn for me.)
刈って < 刈る(かる) to mow

・助言して もらって 助かりました。 I have profited by your advice.
助言する(じょげんする)=to advise

[As a bonus: :)
adversative passive
・かれに助られては こまる。A loose translation of it is "I don't want him to survive".]


In the second meaning of 助かる:

・この機械(きかい)だけが津波(つなみ)から助かった。Only this machine survived the tsunami undamaged.
・その事故(じこ)で助かったのは、きみだけだ。The only person who survived the accident is you.

As for 助ける, you might not need examples, but
・翔太(しょうた=a boy's name)はいぬを助けた。 Shouta saved a dog.
・そのいぬは翔太に助けられた。 The dog was saved by Shouta.
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Re: Help with changing objects into topics. "を" to "は"

Postby FlameHaze » Tue 07.09.2013 2:22 am

Alright, that's all for now. Thank you guys very much for your help, I REALLY appreciate it very much. I know my endless questions can be annoying sometimes lol :D For now, I'll just revise Minna no Nihongo book 1 and start my reading before I advance into book 2. Hopefully I can reach N4 by the end of the year. :)
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