Tag Archives: grammar

The mysterious case of the double wo (を) particle

Japanese particles can be tricky because of their many usages and combinations. For example 「で」 can be seen with other particles in the two-particle pair 「では」or 「での」 or even in the 4-particle combination 「ならではの」. On the other hand, the 「を」 particle (written as ‘wo’ or just ‘o’), is one of the most straightforward to learn.… Read More »

Japanese particle combination: ”no ni” (のに)

Japanese particles are small words packed full with meaning and often don’t have direct parallels to English. In a few past articles I’ve talked about a few particle combinations (での, への, では、and ならではの). In this post I’d like to go over the combination のに (“no ni” or “noni”) which is pretty commonly used. There are… Read More »

Two types of “can’t” in Japanese: improper vs impossible

When learning a foreign language, often it is good to try and get away from your native language and think in the foreign language so you don’t end up saying things that sounds like they came out of a translation program. Having said that, when speaking that foreign language it will take time for your… Read More »

Talking about the future in Japanese (mirai, shourai, kore kara, ima kara, etc.)

In this post I’d like to discuss a few ways of talking about the future in Japanese. To begin with, one of the first words students students learn about the future is 未来 (mirai), which can be used to talk about something that has not occurred yet. Let’s use this word in a simple sentence:… Read More »

A primer on Japanese emotive sentence-ending particles: ne, na, naa, yo (ね、な、なあ、よ)

One of the tricky things about running a language-learning blog is deciding what to write about. When I first started this blog back in December 2013, I mostly intended to act as support for those learning Japanese without necessarily getting too involved into detailed explanations about fundamental grammar structures that might already be covered elsewhere in… Read More »

The Japanese particle は(wa), 癒やし (iyashi), and therapeutic dogs.

Grammar is interesting because it allows packing a lot of meaning into only a few words. In Japanese, a language where words are often omitted, that is even more so. In this post I want to analyze the following sentence, which I heard the other day: 犬は癒やされますね。 [Inu wa iyasaremasu ne] This sentence is quite… Read More »

Using “~ga suru” (〜がする) to express feeling or sensing something in Japanese

In this post I’d like to discuss a grammar construct that I had not explicitly learned into fairly late in my Japanese studies. I saw it used often but until I researched it I didn’t understand it completely. The pattern is  “[noun] + ga suru”.  First, before we talk about the combination of “ga” and… Read More »

Japanese non-past (present/future) tense, “will”, and intention

One of the nice things about the Japanese language is that it has relatively few grammatical tenses, at least compared to languages like English which can get quite messy. Knowing a handful of tenses can get you pretty far, although you do have to memorize the conjugation for each category of verbs. In this post… Read More »

Expressing bad intentions in Japanese and 「悪気」 (warugi)

When using Japanese in everday life there are some useful expressions you can pick up that are not commonly used in media like books and manga. One such word is 「悪気」 (warugi), which should not be confused with the similar sounding “Waluigi” character from the Mario world. In Dictionary Goo, we see this word described… Read More »

Variations on a phrase for asking directions when you are lost

Once in awhile I’ll look through the posts on WordPress tagged ‘Japanese’ and when I find those trying to teach Japanese grammar or vocabulary, I have a habit of searching for mistakes and will generally message the post authors when I find them. Often people who are studying Japanese themselves are posting what they have… Read More »