Tag Archives: particle

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 »

Japanese expression “〜するも” (~suru mo) and vagueness of the が (ga) particle

Recently I read the very enjoyable short story “麦本三歩は今日が好き” by 住野よる in the literary magazine 小説幻冬 (Dec 2016 edition). I even translated a short excerpt of it into English here. There was one line of the story whose grammar I just couldn’t figure out, and I thought that it was either some strange pattern I had never… Read More »

Japanese particle confusion:  人「?」手伝ってあげる

All human-made languages are built from rules, upon which are piled on exception after exception (at least in the languages I have studied). In this post I’d like to go over a confusing usage of a Japanese particle that I’ve stumbled across in my own speech several times. What particle do you think fits in the… Read More »

Japanese phrase “~kara de” (〜からで)

I feel that particles (such as の、で、に) are the heart of the Japanese language, or at least a grammatical aspect of the language that is significantly different to languages such as English. I think it’s fair to say that without a very strong grasp of particles, one can never fully understand the subtleties of more advanced sentences.… Read More »

Japanese particle combination での (de no)

Mastering Japanese particles can be difficult, especially when you have to worry about various combinations of particles as well as individual ones. Some time ago I wrote about the combination ならではの which is one of the tricker ones. This time I’d like to talk about the combination of で (de) and の (no), namely “での” (deno). While… Read More »

The phrase “itsumo wa” in Japanese (what is the opposite of “always”?)

The Japanese particle “wa” in Japanese (written “は”) is a fundamental part of the language and is used very frequently, although it can difficult for students to learn since there is no direct parallel in English (see my blog post on “wa” and “ga”). To give a quick summary, this particle is used to establish the topic… Read More »

The Japanese question particle, か (ka)

Many of the Japanese particles are not easily understood by foreigners studying the language, but fortunately there are a few that are quite simple to grasp and use. か、sometimes called the question particle, is one of these (along with も). As you might expect, this particle is sometimes used when asking a question. It is… Read More »

Simple expressions with そう and a few particles

「そう」 is a very simple word in Japanese that is used extremely often for a variety of situations. It’s meaning is similar to the English “so”, as in the sentence “I told you so”. It’s a mix of the concepts “that” and “true”. This word is commonly used as a light acknowledgement to a question.… Read More »

The wonders of Japanese particle も(mo): different ways to say “also” [intermediate]

も is one of the first particles that is typically taught, and with good reason. Not only does it have a variety of common uses, but they tend to be pretty easy to understand and use, unlike は/が which take considerably more time to master. Just make sure you don’t confuse も with もう (already),… Read More »

Say “yes” to a better understanding of the Japanese particle “no” (の)

Just like the particle は, it can take some time to get the hang of understanding and using the Japanese particle の。I’ll use what I’ve learned from textbooks, from experience, and from dictionary.goo.ne.jp to illustrate the many uses of this important element of the language. 1)  Possessive or descriptive This is by far the easiest… Read More »