よつばと!Vol 1 Discussion Thread (Beginner's Book Club)

Ooh - very possible, but I’m not positive she’s saying long hair - it could be 髪の毛?

I guess it could be, except that it says なげ rather than のけ… and I don’t know why it would do that. But it’s common in manga for an ending “ai” or “oi” sound to become “e”, and usually extended, like “e—”. I think that’s what happened here; ながい became なげー (just like すごい often becomes すげー).

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How the heck do you get this thing to properly quote what you’re replying to? …Anyway…

方 = one
It works for me, is it correct?

Yeah, I think this is good enough. 方 pronounced ほう means “direction,” but it’s typically used to indicate which of two alternatives you’re talking about. 魚の方がいい = The direction of fish is good = I prefer fish (rather than whatever else we were considering). But I see how you could think of this as “the fish one is good” and it makes just as much sense.

When 方 is pronounced かた, it’s either a polite pronoun for “person,” or it means “way/method”. For example, 言い方 is always いいかた and means “way/manner of speaking.”

Which pronunciation is meant isn’t always so clear, though, so I’m especially glad for the furigana on this word! :slight_smile:

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Thank you jstrout!

  1. To quote, just highlight the bit you want and a “quote?” button should pop up. At least it does on my Chromebook.
  2. Thank you for the wonderful explanation on 方 as “direction”. Thank you so much!
  3. And yes, funny how 方 - ほう and 方 - かた both appear on page 59!

Thank you again so much!

Your translation is good, but I would like to clarify the conclusion a little bit just in case.

方 in here does not mean “one”, but rather just makes it a comparison. For instance,

Page 59 - つよい方か? - the stronger one?

If you omit 方 in here, it would mean just “Strong?” and when you add 方 it becomes “Stronger?” The rest just comes from context, which is quite common in Japanese:

(The one that is) stronger?

But 方 in itself does not mean “one”.

Edit: If I wanted to say “The strong one?”, I think it would be “つよいのか?” instead, though it can depend on the context.

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Not quite, at least not in all cases, but you’re not far off. As others have alluded to, it’s like “the one that is more X”, so “the one who is furthest (of the set of sisters) from being pretty”. Its counterpart, より, is “the one that is less X”.

You’ll see this structure everywhere, and it’s often paired with a negative (or double-negative, probably for politeness reasons), so it’s a good thing for everyone to practice.

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Page 77 (paper):

よつば says 「ど〜ぞ おあがりたまえ!!おまかいですが」. I’m pretty sure this is a jumble of misused polite language, but what phrases is she trying to say and what do they mean? I know どうぞ means please and is typically used for things like asking people to accept something from you. What are the other two?

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On page 87 風香 says 「どうもご迷惑おかけしまして申しわけありません…」. What does おかけしまして mean? (Clearly I have difficulty with polite language…)

Thank you both Euphony and fl0rm! With your help, and your very kind patience, I think I’ve cracked this one! Thank you both so much! I’m truly grateful.

迷惑をかける means to inconvenience someone or to cause them trouble. Adding the ご and お prefixes make it more polite -> ご迷惑おかける

Then, I think she is using the てしまう form to even further suggest that she did it by accident.

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As far as I understand, it is just a polite form of かける.

ご迷惑をかける would then be “to cause trouble.”

おかけしまして is the polite て-form of that , so the sentence ends up meaning “I have no excuse for the trouble I have caused you”. (Another reference)

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Page 77

I’m with you in believing that this is going to be a typical よつば mishmash!
I have no idea how it fits together, but the “Yotsubato! Volume One Vocabulary List”, which you can find a link for at the top of this thread, does a great job of breaking it down like this:

どーぞ is an informal form of どうぞ and, like you say, used to say "please, by all means"
あがりたまえ according to this list, is an informal form of 上がる/あがる, meaning “come on in” (informal!)
And then the list says おまかい is not a word, which is why Fuuka then repeats it, though the list suggests she may have meant こまかい (small), which strikes me as correct as many people will say apologetically “come in, come on in, though I’m afraid it’s very small”.

Like I say, all this comes from the Vocab List which you can find a link to at the top of this thread.

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My guess is that with the おまかい, she probably meant お構い (おかまい), which is often said as お構いなく when you go to someone’s house.

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Thank you so much SleepyOne! お構いなく would certainly be funnier as よつば has got her roles reversed! :smile:

てしまう in te-form would be てしまって

Page 81

This morning I’m sitting here trying to get my head around 壊れてる
I guess this must be a passive form of 壊れる, ie, “to be broken” rather than “to break”.
So I looked around the net for how to form passives in Japanese, but can’t figure out how it was formed in this particular case.
Any pointers anyone?

I haven’t read that far yet, so I don’t know the context, but I can answer for the conjugations.

Passive verbs are made with the conjugation られる in Japanese. 壊れる→壊れられる

壊れてる is most likely the spoken form of 壊れている, which you are probably familiar with, that means “is broken”.

edit: if you are ever unsure about conjugations I can recommend this tool that I used when I started learning Japanese http://www.japaneseverbconjugator.com

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And I love the visual jokes that sometimes happen as you turn the page!
Turning from page 81 to 82 is brilliant! Wouldn’t have worked at all if it was on the same page. Turning over and then getting that full half page image has such impact! So funny.
Just like the impact of turning from p.41 to p.42. Utterly brilliant!

Thank you so much Kumirei!
I’m slowly getting there!
And thank you for the link! Off to look at it now! Thank you!

Page 62, last panel, has me scratching my head a bit. Yotsuba calls out, あかなくなったー!

It’s clear from the context that this means basically “I’m stuck,” but what’s going on here linguistically? I believe this is 開かなく なった , literally “it has become not open.” Seems like a funny way to say it though. I mean, it was already not open… what’s new is that it can no longer be opened. I might expect some use of potential form here, but the negative potential (can’t open) is 開けない, and that doesn’t seem to be involved.

Page 67, last panel, そつとしておこう has me completely stumped. A little help?

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