あげる、もらう、くれる。

こんにちはみんなさん, how’s everyone doing? I’d like some help please concerning あげる, もらう and くれる. Most of the times I didn’t have any problem understanding the meaning behind each verb and it’s use. But lately, for some reason, I keep on confusing them. Can anyone lend a hand in understanding the situation here please?

ありがとう in advance!

4 Likes

あげる is from the speaker outwards - you’re doing something for someone
くれる is from outwards toward the speaker, initiated by the other party - someone’s doing something for you
もらう is from outwards toward the speaker, initiated by the speaker - you’re having someone do something for you

So:

払ってあげる - I’ll pay the bill
払ってくれる - you pay the bill for me (as a favour or whatever)
払ってもらう - I have you pay the bill (because I forgot my wallet or whatever)

24 Likes

Straight to the point and really fast! Thank you very much! :grin:

3 Likes

I just hope it’s as correct as I think it is, but if not I’m gonna be corrected soon enough and we’ll both learn something :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

1 Like

And a slight addition since its not immediately apparent when you see it, causative verb te+morau means that you intend on doing/are gonna verb, but its usually a more polite.

「……ちょっと上がらせてもらうぞ」と土岐が部屋に上がり、for example.

3 Likes

How would you translate that? “I’m planning to go up for a bit”?

Writing down this one too, thanks a lot!

1 Like

Literally or naturally?

Literally it utilizes the permissive usage of the causative. As in, to let something happen rather than to necessarily cause it directly like the name “causative” might incorrectly make you think. So in this case, you’ll saying ill have (もらう) you let me (causative) come in. In this case, あがる just means entering so 部屋にあがる is to enter a room or apartment in this case.

Naturally…hmm I hate translating stuff but I guess the most natural sounding thing to say that gets the same feel across might be “I’ll head on in for a bit” as opposed to “I’m coming in for a bit” to maybe make it a bit softer?

we kinda do the same thing in english to some extent. Like if I say “allow me to demonstrate” im really saying “I’ll show you” but in a more roundabout way I guess and im not actually asking for your permission.

No problem! Its a very common one, but it can be tricky if you’re not prepared.

2 Likes

Ah, yeah, that makes a lot of sense.

So it’s basically the same as just saying ちょっと上がるぞ but you’re making it more polite by essentially phrasing it as if you’re asking the other party to let you come in. Quite a natural construction when you think about it like that.

Check, thanks!

3 Likes

Yep exactly. Its not actually limited to polite contexts despite that being the actual function of the construction, but its not like thats something unique to japanese. In fact, its often used in more sarcastic ways too.

2 Likes

Just to add, くれる tends to have a connotation of gratefulness baked into it. Sometimes it gets used sarcastically, but putting that aside, if someone does something nice for you, this is the word you’ll use to talk about it and/or thank them.

教えてくれてありがとう
“Thank you for teaching me / explaining (that) to me.”

3 Likes

Side note, when it comes to あげる and くれる, the speaker doesn’t have to be involved in the exchange. More generally, あげる is giving from someone close to you to someone less close to you, while くれる is the reverse.

Found this image on Google:

6 Likes

The Soto/Uchi concept is really useful at explaining a lot of the nuances like this.

3 Likes

I can’t remember the exact chapter in Genki, but I think もらう can also concern third parties where one receives something from the other.

But glad someone brought up the entire matter, because it might be that I’ve been misusing くれる, unless it’s okay in very polite requests as ~てくれる.
Ah, no, looks like my uses were passable.

1 Like

according to the flashcards I made from Genki, you are correct

1 Like

That’s how I remembered it as well, but according to the basic chapter from Genki II on giving and receiving, I’m wrong :joy: and what @yamitenshi wrote is exactly the way that chapter explains it.

That being said, since Genki has the tendency to narrow the scope in explanations and not always cover all possible nuances, maybe what I wrote is still correct?

1 Like

weird, I’m usually very careful when I make flashcards, I copy/paste straight from the source most of the time. My flashcard says “it’s acceptable to use くれる and もらう when a transaction takes place between two people other than yourself in contexts in which you think you yourself have benefited because somebody very close to you has received something (for example, a member of your immediate family or a very good friend) → you identify more closely with the recipient than with the giver”

Hopefully someone can shed some light on this. Does Genki II explicitly say it works like that only with くれる?

1 Like

Sounds similar to English, using polite constructs to be sarcastic/mocking isn’t a strange concept (well excuuuuuse me, Princess!)

Yes, I worded that confusingly I think - the speaker is not the key part, it’s having someone else do something, you can use もらう to express that someone else has another party do something as well (at least, I’ve seen it worded that way: メアリはトムから払ってもらった - Mary had Tom pay the bill)

To clarify, as I understand, もらう is from the perspective of the receiver, not the speaker per se.

1 Like

Got it, thanks! Yes, that makes sense now.

@idleshell your flashcard explanation is also correct, I think. It still matches up with how くれる and もらうwork.

What I was originally confused about were phrases like 教えてくれてお願いします, but I guess I learned this one wrong and くれるprobably wouldn’t work, because it’s effectively a request.

Edit: did some extra checks and the above phrase is definitely not correct, but found a good alternative with もらえませんか, ください and もらう.

1 Like

Just in case you don’t have enough of it yet: I absolutely love this:

3 Likes