Tag Archives: verb

あらせられます (araseraremasu): A triple-polite Japanese word

One of the distinguishing things about the Japanese language is how there are many different ways to say the same thing while varying the level of politeness. For example, the below words all mean “to eat” in increasing levels of politeness. 食う (kuu) 食べる (taberu) 召し上げる (meshiageru) Besides the many different verbs, there is also… Read More »

Praying (strong wishes) in Japanese

In Japanese, when you want to express that you wish for something, you can use the following pattern: Noun or Na-adjective + だといい Verb (in dictionary form or potential form) + といい For example, 優しい人だといいね。 [Yasashii hito da to ii ne] I hope he/she is nice person. みつかるといい [Mitsukaru to ii] I hope you find it.  (literally:… Read More »

Japanese verb 切る and related expressions

The Japanese verb 切る, pronounced “kiru”, is one of the verbs typically introduced in basic level Japanese textbooks. This is because it is an example of verb that end sin ‘iru’ but is conjugated as a constant verb, and also because it’s easy to understand conceptually. In this post I’ll show some related uses of… Read More »

Special uses of the Japanese verb 来る (kuru), “to come”

The Japanese verb 来る (‘kuru’) is often one of the first verbs learned by Japanese students, not just because it is easy to understand but also because it is used somewhat frequently, in both it’s simple form and in a few special usages. First let’s look at the simplest way to use this verb, where it’s… Read More »

ある (aru) and いる (iru) in Japanese: two ways to express “existence”

When learning a foreign language, sometimes you run across words or expressions that, compared to your native language, can actually be more logical or simpler in some way. ある and いる are a pair of verbs in Japanese that are very fundamental and should be taught early in any language acquisition course. These verbs express… Read More »

A few pitfalls when using Japanese

In this article I’d like to discuss a few things to watch out when learning Japanese, most of which were something I struggled with personally. The first is when talking about meeting someone in Japanese. If you aren’t careful, you might first think “I want to see you tonight” and then translate this as “今晩、君を見たい” which… Read More »

Three great Japanese verbs about the mind: 覚える(oboeru), 思い出す(omoidasu), and 思いつく(omoitsuku)

For this post I’ve chosen three Japanese verbs which I think will be very useful for the beginner Japanese student. All of them relate to thought and/or memory in some way. 覚える (おぼえる)is a verb which can be used to mean  ‘to learn’, or ‘to remember’, depending on the context. One of the most common ways… Read More »

Transitive and intransitive verb pairs in Japanese [Intermediate/Advanced]

Mastering Japanese verbs so that you can use and understand them fluently requires a good grasp of the concept of transitive vs. intransitive verbs. Transitive verbs are those which perform an action on an object (i.e. つける、たてる). You can think of these as “targeted”. The object is typically specified using the particle を。 On the… Read More »

Japanese verb dictionaries: are they really needed? [beginner]

There is one type of Japanese reference book that I often run across in bookstores that always makes me wonder. It’s the Japanese verb dictionary which have several hundreds of pages, each containing a verb and its various conjugations. For a beginner where money is no object and you just need to double check your… Read More »