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Grammar page 6

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  ===の後ろに no ushiro ni - behind...===
  ===の後ろに no ushiro ni - behind...===
  机の後ろに本があります。 tsukue no ushiro ni hon ga arimasu. There is a book behind the desk.
  机の後ろに本があります。 tsukue no ushiro ni hon ga arimasu. There is a book behind the desk.
'''Continue to [[Grammar page 6|lesson 6]]'''

Revision as of 09:49, 6 August 2006

The fifth page of the grammar lessons.


Looks like ~みたい

Looks like we made it - as Barry Manilow would say - at least we made it half way!

台風が 来る みたい。taifuu ga kuru mitai. It looks like a hurricane. [This could mean you are looking at storm clouds, OR someone told you a hurricane is coming and you are reporting that possibility]

And just stick it after a noun

この 景色は 夢 みたい。 kono keshiki wa yume mitai. This scenery looks like a dream. [Useful if visiting Mt. Fuji - or, alternatively, if you have bad dreams, a garbage heap...]

あの 人は 日本人 みたい。 ano hito WA nihonjin mitai. That person looks like he's [or she's] Japanese.

There is another usage of -mitai where it can mean 'try and see' when added to the て form of a verb: やってみたい yatte mitai - I'll give it a shot. 食べてみたい tabete mitai - I'll taste and see.

That is a bit different from the above, but it is also very useful!

I heard...; They say ~そう

While みたい can convey info you have heard as well as what you see, ~そう is mainly used for info that originated elsewhere. - I heard...

Construction: 1) simple verb + ~sou + desu/da

ゆきちゃんは 肉を 食べない そう だ。 yuki chan WA niku o tabenai sou DA I heard Yuki doesn't eat meat.


2) -i adjective + ~sou + desu/DA

田中さんの新しいパ・#92;コンは とても 高い そう です。 tanaka san no atarashii pasokon wa totemo takai sou desu. I heard Tanaka's new computer is very expensive. [This info could have come from Tanaka himself, or someone else]

Like, as... ~ように

Here is a useful tag which means 'just as...' or 'like this...'

Construction: 1) simple verb + ~you ni

私が言う ように して。 watashi ga iu you ni shite. Do as I say. Do as I say.


2) noun + ~ no you ni

あなた は 熊のプーさん のように かわいい です。 anata wa kuma no pu-san no you ni kawaii desu. You are as cute as Winnie the Pooh

like, as if, apparently らしい

This is similar to ~sou where the speaker is repeating info heard from another source. The only difference may be ~rashii may be based on more reliable information.

Construction: 1) simple verb + ~rashii 山田さん は 帰った らしい です。 yamada san wa kaetta rashii desu. It sounds like Mr. Yamada has come home.


2) noun + ~rashii

There are a few nouns with rashii that you can remember as a word in itself. This meaning is slighly different from the above verb construction. Instead of meaning info heard elsewhere, when added to a noun it means the speaker thinks something looks like something. Here are a few:

男らしい otokorashii - manly (like a man)
女らしい onnarashii - girly (but perhaps 女っぽい onnappoi is used more)
犬らしい inurashii - like a dog (substitute any animal here. This is useful when you see an animal at night and are not sure what it is, but it looks like..)
アメリカらしい amerikarashii - American-ish (substitute any country) 

Another similar construction with nouns is ~ppoi - as seen above with onnappoi. When added to nouns to mean 'looks like...' ~ppoi is the same as ~rashii

Let's... ~しましょう

Maybe this should be bumped up since it is so useful. Let`s start...

Construction: 1) ~masu verb - masu + mashou

Here are a few quick and useful examples:

行きましょう。 ikimashou. Let's go. 
遊びましょう。 asobimashou. Let's play. 
先生と話しましょう。 sensei to hanashimashou. Let's talk to the teacher. 
日本語を勉強しましょう。 nihongo o benkyou shimashou. Let's study Japanese. This example uses suru. Another example would be: 
スカイダイビングしましょう。 sukai daibingu shimashou. Let's go sky diving. 

This construction is very easy if you know the masu (formal) form of the verb. If you are a beginner, you probably want to stick with the ~masu form anyway.

Won't you...? ~ませんか?

Why don't we study Japanese grammar?

ok. Since we have the above construction (using a negative to suggest doing something) in English, this grammar point isn't too difficult to grasp

Construction: 1) ~masu verb - masu + mashou

どこか行きませんか。 dokoka ikimasen. 
Why don't we go already? [notice I have the English as 'we.' It could be 'you' if you are angry at the person and wish him to leave...] 

映画を見ませんか。 eiga o mimasen ka . Why don't we see a movie. 
何か飲みませんか。 nanika nomimasen ka . 
Wouldn't you like to drink something? [In this case you are asking someone individually if they would like something to drink. ] 

Power ender "ね"

This is used at the end of a sentence and contains a variety of meanings. We will look at it as a question tag.

As a question tag: don't you... isn't it...

あなたはにんじんが嫌いですね。 anata wa ninjin ga kirai desu ne. You don't like carrots, don't you? 
その映画はとてもいい映画だったね。 sono eiga wa totemo ii eiga datta ne. Don't you think that was a good movie? 
今日は暑いですね。 kyou wa atsui desu ne. Today is very hot, isn't it? 

If you want to use ne as a question tag, it helps to nod your head, or change the inflection to let the listener know you would like a response. It is usually used when the speaker feels fairly certain his listeners agree with what was said.

A very useful phrase for whenever something good happens is:

いいね。 ii ne. Isn't that great! 

When, that time とき

If you don't know when to say something, you will never say it!

Using とき toki - at the time when...

With a noun add a の

[Looking at a photo] 私は 学生 の ときには とても 若かったね。 watashi wa gakusei no toki ni wa totemo wakakatta ne. [looking at a photo] When I was a student, I was very young, wasn't I?

And with verbs...

simple past 
フロリダに 行った ときに これを 買いました。
furorida ni itta toki ni kore wo kaimashita. When I went to Florida, I bought this. 
フロリダに 行く ときは おみやげを 買います。
furorida ni iku toki wa omiyage wo kaimasu. When I go to Florida, I will buy souvenirs. 
寝る とき いつも 布団で 寝ます。
neru toki itsumo futon de nemasu. When I sleep, I always sleep on a futon. 

For more information on time related words, click here

Using こと、もの

This is how you say 'thing'

Koto - intangible things

いい事はありません。 ii koto wa arimasen. There isn't anything good. 
大事な事を教えます。 daiji na koto o oshiemasu. I will tell you an important thing. 
昨日の事はすみませんでした。 kinou no koto wa sumimasen deshita. I am sorry about what happened yesterday. (yesterday's thing) 

Mono - tangible things

その黒いものは猫かなあ。 sono kuroi mono wa neko kanaa. I wonder if that black thing is a cat? 
おいしいものが食べたい。 oishii mono ga tabetai. I want to eat something good. 

One useful phrase using koto is:

dou iu koto?
What is the meaning of this?

This phrase is used whenever the listener isn't sure of the motive of the speaker.

situation, case 場合

This is one that should be learned by useful examples

非常の場合はボタンを押してください。 hijou no ba ai wa botan o oshite kudasai. In case of emergency push the button. 
その場合はどうすればいい? sono ba ai wa dou sureba ii? In that situation, what should I do? 
テストがあった場合、私は病気になります。 tesuto ga atta ba ai, watashi wa byouki ni narimasu. Should a test be given , I will get sick. 

Etc... and... など、とか

Sometimes you have to say more than one thing. Whoever invented 'etc.' was a genius. Let's see how to do this in Japanese...

First a few ways to list multiple items:

や ya - and, and so forth 
ピーマンやほうれん草が嫌いです。 pi-man ya hourensou ga kirai desu. I don't like green peppers, spinach and the like. 
とか toka - or, and, and so forth 
熊のプーさんとかドラえもんとかキティちゃんが好きです。 kuma no pu-san toka doraemon toka kiti chan ga suki desu.
I like things like Winnie the Pooh and Doraemon and Hello Kitty. 

And now for nado to wrap things up.

食べ物の中ではピザとかフライドポテトなどが好きです。 tabemono no naka dewa piza toka furaido poteto nado ga suki desu. As for foods, 
I like things like pizza or french fries. 

About くらい or ぐらい

About how much? About how many?

Sometimes the く turns into a ぐ probably after harder consonants. お客様はどのくらい来ましたか? okyakusama wa dono kurai kimashita ka? About how many customers came?

ええと、100人くらい来ました。 eeto, hyaku nin kurai kimashita. Let me see, About 100 people. 
You can use this with time:
8時ぐらい hachi ji gurai - about 8 O'clock
Or counting anything:
2匹くらい ni hiki kurai - about 2 (animals)
10冊ぐらい juu satsu gurai - about 10 books

How about ...? どう

To ask the state of something (how something is doing) use the useful dou (desu ka).

You can used it with or without the final 'desu ka' in conversation. 最近はどうですか? saikin wa dou desu ka? How's it going recently?

コーヒーはどう? ko-hi- wa dou? How's the coffee? or it could mean How about some coffee? 
天気・#92;報はどう? tenki yohou wa dou? How's the weather forecast looking? 

Of course when the context is understood you can simply say, 'dou' (Like returning from a doctor's appointment, or after your friend gets off an important phone call)


This literally means 'to complete, finish' but can (and usually does) involve a regret over having done something. Also it can be used sarcastically to mean the speaker really wanted to do something, but gives a halfhearted apology. For example, 最後のクーキーを食べてしまった。 I unfortunately ate the last cookie. Of course there really wasn't anything unfortunate about it.

The construction is usually after the ~te form of any verb

全部のお金を使ってしまいました。 zenbu no okane o tsukatte shimaimashita. Unfortunately, I spent all my money. 
私は完全に日本語を忘れてしまった。watashi wa kanzen ni nihongo o wasurete shimatta. Unfortunately, I have completely forgotten Japanese. 

Another very useful variation is ~chatta. This is informal and is used by both male and female speakers. chau is made by combining te shimau -> chau

試験に落ちちゃった。 shiken ni ochichatta. I flunked the test unfortunately. 

or in the present tense

ケーキを全部食べちゃう。 ke-ki o zenbu tabechau. I will eat all the cake. 
An important point by Mukade in the forums:
In the Kansai area, the use of ちゃった is limited to female speakers.
I learned both in the classroom, of course, since they are standard dialect. 
But when I moved here to Osaka, people started asking me if I was gay, since I kept using ちゃった all the time.
If I could help prevent someone else from having to go through the same "hard knocks" learning process that I did, it would make me very happy.
So be careful if you are in the Kansai area! But in most areas it should be fine.  

Please do... ~てください

Here's how you boss people around. Well, in a nice way...

add kudasai (please) after the ~te form of any verb

ゆっくり話してください。 yukkuri hanashite kudasai. Please speak slowly. 
もっと大人らしくしてください。 motto otona rashiku shite kudasai. Please act more grown-up. 
ここで右に曲がってください。 koko de migi ni magatte kudasai. Please turn right here. 

Please give me... ~をください

Another use for kudasai is "please give me..."

その本をください。 sono hon o kudasai. Please give me that book. 
500円をください。 go hyaku en o kudasai. Please give me 500 yen. 

In spoken Japanese, the 'o' is usually dropped.

On, In, Above, Behind

A good knowledge of position particles will help glue everything together.

===にni - on===
机に本があります。 tsukue ni hon ga arimasu. There is a book on the desk. 
のうえに no ue ni - on top of
机のうえに本があります。 tsukue no ue ni hon ga arimasu. There is a book on (top of) the desk. 
===のしたに no shita ni - under...===
机のしたに本があります。 tsukue no shita ni hon ga arimasu. There is a book under the desk. 
===の後ろに no ushiro ni - behind...===
机の後ろに本があります。 tsukue no ushiro ni hon ga arimasu. There is a book behind the desk.

Continue to lesson 6

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