Wednesday, May 1, 2019

yaru やる

In Japanese, yaru やる means a bunch of things. It can mean "to do" in a dozen ways. It can mean "to give [something]," or be used as an auxiliary verb to say "to do [something] for [someone]," just like ageru 上げる. It can mean "to work [a profession]." It can mean "to murder [someone]". And it can mean "to have sex with [someone]."

Depending on its meaning, it's sometimes written with different kanji.

Example of yaru やる in Japanese.
Manga: One Punch Man (Chapter 48)

To Do

The basic meaning of yaru やる is "to do," in the sense of "to perform a task," "to do something."
  • nani ka wo yaru
    To do something.

From this, like any verb, it can be conjugated for various forms.
  • nani mo yaranai
    To not do anything.
    To do nothing.
  • nani wo yatte-iru?
    To be doing what?
    What are [you] doing?
    • iru いる
      To exist. (verb.)
      To be [doing]. (auxiliary verb.)

In this case, yaru やる can be spelled with kanji, as yaru 遣る, except it's normally spelled with hiragana.

yatta やった

The word yatta やった is often used in anime when the characters manage to achieve something.
  • yatta!
    [I] did [it]!
    [We] did [it]!

But it's simply the past form of yaru やる.
  • nani wo yatta?
    Did what?
    What did [you] do?

yatta koto やったこと

The verb yaru is often used in relative clauses qualifying the light noun koto こと.
  • {watashi ga yatta} koto
    The thing [that] {I did}.
  • {yareru} koto wa subete yaru
    To do all the things [that] {is able-to-do}.
    To do everything {[I] can do}.
    To do everything [I] can.
    To do everything in [my] power.
  • {yareru} koto wa subete yatta
    To have done everything [I] could.
    To have done everything in [my] power.

In particular, it's used in the patterns koto aru ことある and koto nai ことない, which refer to whether the relative clause has or hasn't ever been true, in this case, whether you have or haven't ever done something.
  • {yatta} koto aru?
    {Done} was ever true?
    Have [you] ever {done} [it]?
  • {yatta} koto nai
    {Done} was never true.
    [I] have never {done} [it].

yaritai やりたい

The word yaritai やりたい means "want to do." It's the verb yaru やる in its tai-form.
  • nani ka yaritai!
    Something is want-to-do!
    [I] want to do something!
  • {yaritai} koto ga aru?
    A thing [that] {is want-to-do} exists?
    Is there something [that] {[you] want to do}?

Naturally, it can be conjugated to the negative form:
  • yaritakunai
    [Something] is not want to do.
    [I] don't want to do [it].

To Play

The verb yaru やる means "to perform a task." Sometimes, this translates as "to do" in English, but not always. For example:
  • geemu wo yaru
    "To do" a game.
    To play a game.

In general sense, the word for to play a video-game or computer game, and so on, is yaru. This is particularly weird since asobu 遊ぶ is often translated as "to play."

Usually, asobu 遊ぶ just means "to have fun."
  • geemu de asobu
    With a game, to have fun.
    To have fun, by [playing] a game.
    To play a game.

Similarly, saying a sport is something you "do" means you're serious about it, it's not something you "have fun" with.
  • {basuke wo yatte-iru} hito
    A person [who] {is doing basket}.
    A person [who] {plays basketball}.

yaru ki やる気

The phrase yaru ki やる気 means "to feel like doing something."

Grammatically, this is simply yaru as relative clause qualifying the noun ki 気. The only problem is ki 気 is practically impossible to translate to English. So let's ignore it.
  • {yaru} ki manman da!
    The feeling [of] {doing} is full.
    [He's] fully motivated to do [it].
    [He] really looks like he wants to do [it].

はぁ・・・ やる気ゲージ ぐ~ん 胡桃沢さんのやる気がっ!
Manga: Gabriel DropOut, Gavuriiru Doroppuauto ガヴリールドロップアウト (Chapter 22)
  • haa...
    Hah... (sigh.)
  • yaru-ki geeji
    Motivation gauge.
    • keeji ケージ
      Cage. (the panel contains a typo.)
  • gu~~n
    *going down*
  • Kurumizawa-san no yaru-ki ga'!
    Kurumizawa's motivation [is]...!
    • Dropping!!!

One way it's often used in fighting anime is when yaru やる, "to do," refers "to do [a fight]." That is, whether they are feeling like fighting or not.
  • {yaru} ki ka?
    Is [it] the feeling [of] {doing}?
    Are [you] feeling like doing [it]?
    Are [you] feeling like fighting [me]?
    Do [you] want to fight [me]?

yarikata やり方

The word yarikata やり方 means "way-of-doing." It's used to refer to "how" you yaru something. For example:
  • shuuri wo yaru
    To do the repair.
    To repair [something].
  • shuuri no yaruikata
    The way-of-doing of the repair.
    How to do the repair.
    How to repair [something].


The phrase yannoka kora やんのかこら means "[you] wanna fight, huh?!"

It's a contraction of {yaru} no ka, kora やるのか、こら, where the verb yaru やる qualifies the no の particle, which is acting as a nominalizer. The kora こら word can be used to call out someone. It's often seen in fiction about gangs, yakuza, that sort of thing.

Manga: Gintama 銀魂 (Chapter 17)
  • a~~~~~~~~~
    • The dakuten diacritic implies a distorted, angry voice.
  • yannoka kora
    [You] wanna do [it], huh?
    [You] wanna fight, huh?

To Work As

The verb yaru やるcan also mean "to work as" something, as a profession.
  • kyoushi wo yatte-iru
    To be doing a teacher.
    To be working as a teacher.

To Be

Although yaru やる is normally used with professions, it can also be applied with things that aren't really professions, but that are things you can claim "to be." In particular, hobbies:
  • otaku wo yatte-iru
    To be doing otaku.
    To call oneself an otaku.
    To be an otaku.

Webcomic: One Punch Man (Chapter 1)
  • Context: who are you, caped baldy???
  • {shumi de hiiroo wo yatteiru} mono da
    A person [who] {is doing "hero" as a hobby}.
    Someone [who] {is a hero as a hobby}.

yatteiru ijou やっている以上

The phrase yatteiru ijou やっている以上 means "as long as doing [something]," often in the sense of "as long as I call myself [something], something must be expected." For example:
  • {sarariiman wo yatte-iru} ijou, {shikata no nai} koto da
    So long as {salary-man is working}, a thing [that] {method is nonexistent} is.
    So long as {[I'm] an office worker}, [that's] something {[I] can't avoid}.
    • shikata ga nai 仕方がない
      Method is nonexistent.
      Having to way to do anything about it.

Of course, it could also mean "so long as I'm doing this thing, this other thing will happen," in any sense of the verb yaru やる.

To Give

The word yaru やる can also be used like ageru あげる, meaning "to give." For example:
  • kore wo yaru
    [I']] give [you] this.
    • kore wo ageru これをあげる
      (same meaning.)
バナナやる ん?ああ ありがとう
Manga: One Punch Man (Chapter 48)
  • banana yaru
    [I'll] give [you] a banana.
  • n? aa
    Hmm? Alright.
  • arigatou

The difference between ageru and yaru is that yaru やる is generally used toward someone who's inferior, while ageru あげる is used toward someone who's equal.

By the way, sashiageru 差し上げる is toward someone who's superior. (inferior normally means someone younger, or in a low position in a company, a kouhai, etc.)
  • esa wo yaru
    To give food [to an animal].
    • esa
      Animal food. Pet food. Fodder. Lure.
    • Animals are inferior to humans, most of the time.

Like everything in Japanese, this also means sashiageru is more likely to be used between complete strangers in a business setting, while yaru is more likely to be used in anime.

-te-yaru ~てやる

The phrase -te-yaru ~てやる, or -de-yaru ~でやる, is the auxiliary verb yaru やる coming after the te-form of another verb. In which case it means to do something "for" someone. The verb ageru あげる also works similarly.
  • oshiete yaru
    [I'll] tell [you]. (some information.)
    [I'll] teach [you].
    • oshiete ageru 教えてあげる
      (same meaning.)

yatteyaru やってやる

The phrase yatteyaru やってやる means "[I'll] do [it] for [you]," or something along those lines. It's literally the word yaru やる twice, once as a normal verb and once as an auxiliary verb.

Since both yaru and ageru can be both normal and auxiliary verbs, they can both be auxiliary for each other or themselves; For example:
  • yatte-yaru やってやる
    yatte-ageru やってあげる
    [I'll] do it [for you].
  • ageru 上げる
    To raise. (normal verb meaning.)
  • agete-yaru 上げてやる
    agete-ageru 上げてあげる
    [I'll] raise it [for you].
    • ageru 上げる
      To raise [something]. (verb.)
      To do for [someone]. (auxiliary.)

yatteyarou やってやろう

The phrase yatteyarou やってやろう means "let's give it a try." The reason for this is a bit complicated, but it's literally the verb yaru twice with the auxiliary conjugated to volitional form.
  • yatte-yarou janee ka!
    To do [A] for [B] let's, isn't it?! (literally.)
    Let's do [A] for [B], shall not we?!
    Let's give [A] a do for [B], shall we?!
    Let's give [A] a try for [B], why not?!
    Let's try doing [A] for [B], why not?!
    Let's try doing [it], why not?!

An example:
  • Man, I wish I could circumnavigate the world in 80 days.

kureteyaru くれてやる

The phrase kureteyaru くれてやる means "[I'll] give [it] to [you]." It's the verb kureru くれる which also means "to give," plus the auxiliary verb yaru やる.

Normally, kureru is always used when someone else is giving something to you, however, technically, it also means just "to give."

In particular, the following phrase is basically only seen in anime:
  • kurete-yaru
    [I'll] give it [to you].
    • yatteyaru やってやる
      (same meaning.)
  • hoshii nara kurete-yaru
    [If you] want [it] then [I'll] give it [to you].

Note that just because it says "to give" that doesn't mean it's something good. For example, "to give someone a beating" has the verb "to give" in it.

To Kill

The word yaru やる can also mean "to murder." In this case, it's also spelled with the kanji for korosu 殺す, "to kill."
  • nan'nin mo yatta
    [He] killed even an unknown number of people.
    [He] killed a lot of people.
    • nan'nin mo yatta
      (same meaning, gikun.)

To Have Sex With

The word yaru やる can also mean "to have sex with."
  • nan'nin mo yatta
    [He] had sex with a lot of people.

If it's spelled with the kanji for okasu 犯す, "to do something you shouldn't do," e.g. "to violate [a law, a rule]," or "to rape [someone]," the meaning may change greatly.
  • nan'nin mo yatta
    [He] raped a lot of people.

This yaru 犯る spelling can also be used when "to do" something means "to commit [a crime]."[「やる」について 意味なんですけど 「犯る」 -, accessed 2019-05-02]

By the way, the meme yaranaika? actually comes from this usage.
  • yaranai ka?
    Won't [you] have sex with [me]?

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