Japanese I-30

Vocabulary


English
Osaka

word

this (something)

this morning

something
anything (neg.)

to arrive at
masu (formal)
dict (casual)
-te (imperative)


romaji
oo-saka

kotoba

kono

kesa

nani-ka
nani-mo (neg.)

 
tsukimasu
tsuku
tsuite


kana
おおさか

ことば

この

けさ

なにか
なにも

 
つきます
つく
ついて


kanji
大さか

 

 

 

何か
何も

 
 
 
 


  • ‘oo-saka’ means ‘big-hill’. That is why its first kanji is 大.

Sample sentences

Eng: how do you say X (in Japanese/English).


formal
X wa (nihongo/eigo de) nan to iimasu ka?

X は(にほんご/えいご)なんと いいますか。

X は(日本語/えい語)何といいますか。

casual
X wa (nihongo/eigo de) nan to iu?


Comments

The following comments explain some of the grammar in more detail.

Pronouns

kono (この)

‘kono’ is part of another ‘ko-so-a-do’ family: ‘kono…/sono…/ano…/dono…’, which mean ‘this…/that…/that … over there/which …’. This is the same meaning as ‘kore/sore/are/dore’ except that now we have to specify what we are talking about, i.e., they have to be followed by a noun:


English
This one is expensive.
This car is expensive.

That one is inexpensive.
That car is inexpensive.

How much is that one over there?
How much is that car over there?

which one?
which car?

romaji
kore wa taka-i desu.
kono kuruma wa taka-i desu.

sore wa yasu-i desu.
sono kuruma wa yasu-i desu.

are wa ikura desu ka?
ano kuruma wa ikura desu ka?

dare?
dono kuruma?


Adverbs

nani-mo (なにも, 何も)

‘nani-mo’ means ‘nothing’ when it is paired with a negative verb, i.e., ‘anything’ + neg. verb = ‘nothing’.


English
I want something.
I don’t want anything.

I ate something.
I didn’t eat anything.

formal
nani-ka hoshi-i desu.
nani-mo hoshi-ku ari-masen.

nani-ka tabe-mashita.
nani-mo tabemasen deshita.


casual
nanika hoshi-i.
nanimo hoshi-ku nai.

nani-ka tabe-ta.
nani-mo tabe-nakatta.


Adjectives

suki (すき)

‘suki’ is probably the one adjective that will show up in every movie and anime, because it can be used to mean ‘I love you’. Japanese has a direct translation of ‘I love you’, i.e., ‘ai shiteru’, but it is very formal so it usually used only is special occasions. Instead, we declare our love toward people telling them that ‘we like them’ instead of ‘we love them’.

In Japanese, though, there is no verb that means ‘to like’. We cannot use ‘hoshi-i’ because this translates more to ‘want-able’. Instead, we use the adjective ‘suki-na’ that means ‘to be likable’. Thus, to tell a person that we like him/her, we tell them that they are ‘likeable’. The kanji for ‘suki’ is 好き; the left side of 好 is 女 (onna), which means ‘woman’, while the right side is 子 (ko), which means ‘child’. Hence, 好 describes the fondness of a woman for her child.


English
I like beer.
I like beer a lot.

I like (you).
I like you.
I like the real you.
I like you a lot.
I like the real you a lot.

formal
biiru ga suki desu.
biiru ga dai suki desu.

suki desu.
anata ga suki desu.
anata no koto ga suki desu.
anata ga dai suki desu.
anata no koto ga suki desu.

casual
biiru ga suki (desu/da).
biiru ga dai suki (desu/da).

suki (da).
kimi ga suki (da).
kimi no koto ga suki (da).
kimi ga dai suki (da).
kimi no koto ga suki (da).


‘koto’ means ‘thing’, but unlike ‘mono’, which refers to something material, ‘koto’ refers to something intangible, more like an essence. Thus ‘anata no koto’ would translate as ‘your essence’, or ‘the thing that makes you you’.