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Saturday, June 22, 2019

Sentence-Ending Particles 終助詞

In Japanese, "sentence-ending particles," or shuujoshi 終助詞, "final particles," are particles that come at the end of a phrase and express emotion, emphasis, determination, surprise, doubt, the speaker's will, calls for attention, and other ridiculously hard to explain effects.
Thursday, June 13, 2019

Female Language

In Japanese, "female language," or joseigo 女性語, refers to words and manner of speech predominantly used by women in Japan, that, consequently, would sound weird if used by men.

It's also called "women's language," and onna-kotoba 女言葉, "women's words."
Friday, June 7, 2019

sou そう

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In Japanese, sou そう means "like that," "that's right," "it seems," or "I heard from someone that" depending on what function of the word is being used in a given sentence.
Thursday, June 6, 2019

Nouns

In grammar, a noun is a word that refers to a thing, like a "cat." It isn't a verb: "John cats Mary." Or an adjective: "the caty person." Or an adverb: "he spoke catly." It's a noun.

Japanese has nouns too, like neko 猫, which means "cat," and turns out a lot of grammar depends on how nouns work, so that's what I'm going to explain in this article.

Subject and Object

In grammar, the subject, the direct object, and the indirect object are types of arguments a verb can have. The concept applies to both English and Japanese, but there are differences between how the two languages express and interpret verb arguments in a sentence.
Sunday, June 2, 2019

は Particle

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In Japanese, the wa は particle has multiple functions.
Saturday, May 18, 2019

を Particle

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In Japanese, the wo を particle has one function: it marks the direct object of the sentence. Which should make it the simplest particle in all Japanese. However, just because it's the simplest one, that doesn't mean it's going to be simple.

To begin with, the wo を particle is also romanized o を. This happens because the wo を particle is pronounced like o お in Japanese.

In this article, as well as in the rest of this blog, it's romanized wo. In other blogs, resources, it may be romanized o. There's no difference: it's the same Japanese, different romaji.
Friday, May 17, 2019

が Particle

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In Japanese, the ga が particle has several functions.
Wednesday, May 15, 2019

に Particle

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In Japanese, the ni に particle has several functions.
Tuesday, May 14, 2019

な Particle

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In Japanese, the na な particle has several functions.
Monday, May 13, 2019

の Subject Marker

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In Japanese, the no の particle can sometimes replace the ga が particle as subject marker in a relative clause. Since this is something that's a bit confusing, I thought I'd better make a separate article to talk about it.
Sunday, May 12, 2019

の Particle

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In Japanese, the no の particle has several functions.
Friday, May 3, 2019

~といい~といい

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In Japanese, __ to ii __ to ii ~といい~といい is a pattern used when citing two things about a situation before concluding something the situation.

  • nedan to ii, shitsu to ii, manzoku desu
    値段といい、質といい、満足です
    (citing) the price, the quality, (conclusion) [I'm] satisfied.
    • Given the price and the quality, I'm satisfied with this.


They're also spelled to ii と言い, from to iu と言う, "to say." Not to be confused with the other to ii といい, which's from "good," ii 良い.

The pattern can repeat for more than two things, but it's usually just two things.

otoko 男, 漢

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In Japanese, otoko 男 means a "man," and otoko 漢 means a "MAN." A man among men. Whose pride, bravery, and dignity is unrivaled.

This, of course, isn't an actual word. It's a meme. It shows up in manga and anime from time to time.

Normally, "man" in Japanese is spelled otoko 男, as seen in words like otoko no ko, "male child," "boy."

The manga slang otoko 漢 is an ateji, that is, we're spelling with a certain kanji a word that doesn't have kanji or is normally spelled with different kanji. In this case, 漢 is the kanji for "man" in Chinese. Normally, it can only be read as kan 漢 in Japanese, like in chikan 痴漢, "foolish man," "molester." (another manga ateji is otokonoko 男の娘, "trap.")