Monday, December 16, 2019

kateikei 仮定形

In Japanese, the kateikei 仮定形 is one of the six basic inflectable forms of verbs and adjectives.

The term kateikei is used with modern Japanese. The term izenkei 已然形 is used with classical Japanese. The kateikei evolved from the izenkei. Although they're similar, their functions are different.

For example, in nomeba 飲めば, the nome~ 飲め~ part is the kateikei or the izenkei. In modern Japanese, it's the kateikei, and nomeba means "if [you] drink [it]." In classical Japanese, it's the izenkei, and nomeba means "because [you] drink [it]."

Conjugation

For reference, how to conjugate the kateikei.

Kateikei Conjugation Table
~ba
Irregular Verbs
kuru
くる
kure~
くれ~
suru
する
sure~
すれ~
Godan Verbs
kau
買う
kae~
買え~
kaku
書く
kake~
書け~
oyogu
泳ぐ
oyoge~
泳げ~
korosu
殺す
korose~
殺せ~
katsu
勝つ
kate~
勝て~
shinu
死ぬ
shine~
死ね~
asobu
遊ぶ
asobe~
遊べ~
yomu
読む
yome~
読め~
kiru
切る
kire~
切れ~
Ichidan Verbs
kiru
着る
kire~
着れ~
taberu
食べる
tabere~
食べれ~
i-Adjectives
kawaii
可愛い
kawaikere~
可愛けれ~
na-Adjectives
kirei na
綺麗な
kirei nara~
綺麗なら~
Jodoushi 助動詞
masu
ます
masure~
ますれ~
desu
です
~ta
~た
~tara~
~たら~

For godan verbs, the kateikei ends in the vowel ~e.

The polite jodoushi desu です doesn't have a kateikei.

Usage

In modern Japanese, the kateikei comes before the ba ば conjunctive particle in order to form the ba-form.

This ba-form is conditional and is used in a few different ways. First, it means: if you do something, something else happens.
  • kusuri wo nomu
    薬を飲む
    To drink the medicine.
  • kusuri wo nomeba naoru
    薬を飲めば治る
    If [you] drink the medicine, [you] heal.
    If you drink the medicine, you'll be cured.

This conditional form can also be applied to the passive form, causative form, and so on.
  • hito wo korosu
    人を殺す
    To kill people.
  • hito ga korosareru
    人が殺される
    People will be killed.
  • hito wa korosarereba shinu
    人は殺されれば死ぬ
    If people are killed, [they] die.
    People die when they're killed

Adjectives also have this form.
  • yasui
    安い
    To be cheap.
  • yasukereba kau
    ければ買う
    If [it] is cheap, [I] will buy [it].
.
This also applies to auxiliaries conjugated like i-adjectives.
  • shinitai
    死にたい
    To want to die.
  • shinitakunai
    死にたくない
    To not want to die.
  • shinitakunakereba hashire!
    死にたくなければ走れ!
    If [you] don't want to die, run!

Like other conditionals, this ba-form can come before the adjective ii いい, "good," to express something should be fine.
  • kiku
    聞く
    To hear. To listen.
    To ask someone a question.
  • shiranakereba kikeba ii
    知らなければ聞けばいい
    If [you] don't know, [it] would be good if [you] asked about [it].
    If you don't know, it's better if you asked about it.
    If you don't know, you should ask.

Like other conditionals, the ba-form can also come before naranai ならない and other negative phrases to mean "must."
  • tatakau
    戦う
    To fight.
  • tatakawanai
    戦わない
    To not fight.
  • tatakawanakereba naranai
    戦わなければならない
    If [you] don't fight, [it] won't become.
    [You] must fight.

The pattern V-ba V hodo VばVほど means "the more you do something, the more something else is true." For example:
  • benkyou sureba suru hodo wakaranaku naru
    勉強すればするほどわからなくなる
    The more [I] study, the less [I] understand.
  • kusuri wo nomeba nomu hodo waruku naru
    薬を飲めば飲むほど悪くなる
    The more [I] drink the medicine, the worse [I] become.

The kateikei of the jodoushi da だ is nara~ なら~. Therefore, the ba-form is naraba ならば.

The kateikei of the jodoushi ~ta ~た is ~tara~ ~たら~. Therefore, the ba-form is ~taraba ~たらば.

These two forms, naraba and ~taraba, aren't often used. Instead, nara なら and ~tara ~たら, without the ~ba ~ば, are used instead. For example:
  • sore da!
    それだ!
    [It] is that!
    That's [it]!
  • sore nara ba {nomanai} hou ga ii
    それならば飲まない方がいい
    If [it] is that, the way [that is] {to not drink [it]} is good.
    If that's the case, it's better to not drink it.
  • sore nara {nomanai} hou ga ii
    それなら飲まない方がいい
    (same meaning, but more common.)
  • mitara ba wakaru
    たらばわかる
    If [you] saw [it], [you] would understand.
    You'll understand it when you see it.
  • mitara wakaru
    たらわかる
    (same meaning, but way more common.)

Contractions

The phrase ~kereba ~ければ is sometimes contracted to ~kya ~きゃ. Consequently, ~nakereba ~なければ is contracted to ~nakya ~なきゃ.

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