Category Archives: grammar

Explanation of Quick Japanese Quiz: “What is a polite way to ask someone to begin eating a meal?”

Yesterday I did a brief survey-style quiz on Twitter with the following single question: Quick Japanese Quiz: What is a polite way to ask someone to begin eating a meal? Answer choices: (note: the romaji didn’t fit in the original post due to length limitations) 食ってくれ [kutte kure] いただきなさい [itadakinasai] 召し上がってください [meshiagatte kudasai] お腹にお入れいただけませんか? [onaka… Read More »

Japanese Grammar: sentence-ending topics

In the Japanese language, while there are many variations, the basic word order looks like this: [subject] [object] [verb] 僕がりんごを食べた boku ga ringo wo tabeta I ate an apple. You can expand this out to include more types of speech like this: [topic] [subject] [direction or location of action] [object] [verb] [emotive particle(s)] 今日は僕が学校でりんごを食べたよ kyou… Read More »

Japanese Literature: Using Western letters as placeholders for names

Compared to English, Japanese has countless differences in how things are expressed, including major things like word order, particles, and levels of politeness. However, if you ponder things long enough, and do enough research, you can often find something similar in English, or at least a roughly equivalent way to express things, whether that is… Read More »

Japanese expression: 〜してもしきれない (~shite mo shikirenai)

In this post I want to go over a Japanese expression that builds on a few fundamental grammar aspects to make an interesting result. The expression can be described in generic form as  〜してもしきれない (~shite mo shikirenai), but you can switch the “suru” verbs with any other verb.  First, let’s look an example:  この染み、拭いても拭ききれない  (kono… Read More »