撮ってきた vs 撮った

Is there a difference between past た form and ~てきた? I ran into the sentence "ふじさん撮ってきたよー”, which I’m assuming means “Took a picture of Mt. Fuji”, but I don’t know what the purpose of the きた is. Does it mean “Went to take a picture of Mt. Fuji”? Why wouldn’t it be just "ふじさん撮った”?

1 Like

くる is just basically its normal meaning here. Literally “I took a picture of Mt. Fuji and then came back.”

ふじさん撮った would just mean “I took a picture of Mt. Fuji.”

4 Likes

The て form is used when listing actions, so in this case just consider the 撮って and the きた as being separate actions done in sequence. Like Leebo said above, the meaning is “took the photo of Mt. Fuji then returned.”

1 Like

It could, theoretically. It could also mean they took a picture of Mt. Fuji on their way to wherever they wound up. (This seems a lot more likely to me.) As Leebo said, it’s what it looks like–just a compounding of 撮る and 来る, so what precisely it would translate to in English would depend on the situation.

EDIT-- I’m also going to note that sometimes てきた endings just solidify a feeling of completeness–as in “I did/got it!” (Literally, you did something and then arrived–at the present, here, etc.), and that’s as likely an explanation for the example sentence encountered blind as anything.

てきた on transitive verbs can also indicate “has/have continuously ~ed up to the present,” but that’s obviously not what’s happening in the example sentence, and surrounding words will make those instances clear.

Maybe you can expand on that, but the きた in the Japanese emphasizes a different direction than “went.” Though I suppose English speakers use things like “go” and “come” looser than Japanese speakers use いく and くる, by kind of changing the perspective of how they’re thinking about things on the fly sometimes.

Maybe you can expand on that, but the きた in the Japanese emphasizes a different direction than “went.” Though I suppose English speakers use things like “go” and “come” looser than Japanese speakers use いく and くる, by kind of changing the perspective of how they’re thinking about things on the fly sometimes.

I was reading it as in, “I went and ~ed,” reported upon coming back. “I went to take a picture of Fuji, got it, and now I’m back.” Like someone just ran off for a moment during a road trip near Fuji. Weirdly “went and” and てきた are kind of contextual opposites. Japanese omits the going, and English the coming, but both can express a round-trip action.

Edited for clarity – So, I meant “it could be,” in the sense that there are times when I’d probably translate a てきた as “went and” or “went to” in English, in a round-trip context, as opposite as that might seem based on the literal meaning. I thought that’s what OP’s phrasing was suggesting.

Well, this is where context would help too. The OP didn’t tell us where they got the sentence. If it’s from a manga panel where the person is standing with Mt. Fuji in sight and they’re holding the camera, then obviously the sequential action reading would be wrong.

Saying よ at the end in that scenario seems kind of weird unless it’s a manga (or just something with an awful lot of energy)… but I guess maybe they can give us more info.

If it’s the sequential action idea, then よ works fine even in normal conversation, because you are reporting new information to someone.

1 Like

Yeah; it can’t be translated without context, since English uses different phrases for various things all potentially covered by てきた in Japanese. Most I could do was offer a rundown of potential meanings.

My apologies for not providing adequate context. This is actually the exact situation in which it occurred. It came in a series of panels that listed things the character did in a short trip around the Mt. Fuji area, such as eating ice cream, taking a picture of Mt. Fuji, and buying souvenirs.

Based on that then, and replies from iansacks as well, it seems to me the most likely case would be the the “feeling of completeness” and maybe not the sequential action because other things were completed before actually coming back.

My apologies again, I should have included more of this in the OP as well. Rereading it, it leaves a lot to be desired. Thanks for your help in spite of that.