[aDoBJG] K 💮 A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar


A Dictionary of Japanese Grammar :white_flower: Home Thread

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Start Date
Reading Entry Count Page Numbers Page Count
#10 May 27th か1 to から2 7 164 - 178 15
#11 Jun 3rd から3 to きらいだ 7 179 - 191 13
#12 Jun 10th こと1 to ことにする 7 191 - 206 16
#13 Jun 17th ことは to くる2 8 206 - 223 18

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Like I said, if anyone spoils か, I’ll be pissed.


Finally found time to read this again. Here are my cross references with Bunpro again.

か1 to から2
aDoBJG Bunpro
か¹ か (or)
か² か
か(どうか) かどうか
かい かい
かもしれない かもしれない
から¹ から (from)
から² から (because) ???
から3 to きらいだ
aDoBJG Bunpro
から³ から (because)
かしら かしら
方(かた) 方(かた)
かわりに 代(か)わりに
けれども けれども
聞(き)こえる 聞(き)こえる
きらいだ 嫌(きら)い
こと1 to ことにする
aDoBJG Bunpro -
こと¹ ???
こと² こと
ことがある¹ ~たことがある 事(こと)がある
ことがある² 事(こと)がある
ことが出来(でき)る ことが出来(でき)る
ことになる 事(こと)になる
ことにする 事(こと)する
ことは to くる2
aDoBJG Bunpro -
ことは ことは〜が
~ください お~ください
-君(くん) ???
くらい くらい ① くらい ②
くれる¹ 呉(く)れる
くれる² ~てくれる
来(く)る¹ 来(く)る
来(く)る² ~てくる


The main thing that stood out to me here was note 1, which says that when the optional どうか is used, the embedded question has to be a yes-no question, and if it is not used, then the question can be either a yes-no question or a WH-question. Before I read this, I was under the impression that どうか isn’t optional when it isn’t a WH-question? So that was news to me, haha.

I’m not going to look for any examples with just か, because that would be too much of a pain to search for, but I do have one for かどうか:

This is from Miu Watanabe's post-match comments after she defended the International Princess title at Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling's 2023.1.4 show:

Hard mode: here’s the video (the part quoted below starts around 0:42). Like always, the transcription of the Japanese is from shupro, and the translation is mine and might contain errors.


Miu: “From here, we have Ariake in March, and then the show in America after that. I think it’ll be a show where there’s a question of whether or not I can go, but if I hold the International belt until then… I think I can definitely go to the United States as long as I have this.”

(There’s a pretty funny part after this portion of the video, where Miu talks about wanting to work on her English, and she refers to “my 頑張る”, which the interviewer points out is not exactly English, lol)


So basically か(2) is just “to be or not to be, that is the question”, sorry to spoil if you haven’t read Shakespeare yet!


I got curious and went to look up an actual Japanese translation of that line, and I discovered that it is apparently notoriously difficult to translate!

Here’s from the Japanese wikipedia page for Hamlet:

To be, or not to be, that is the question.


この「To be or not to be, that is the question.」という台詞は、有名ではあるが、訳すのが非常に困難だとされている。初期の日本語訳の代表的なものには、坪内逍遥の「世にある、世にあらぬ、それが疑問じゃ」(1926年)などがあり、また、これまでの訳では「生きるべきか死ぬべきか」という訳が多いが、この劇全体からすれば「(復讐を)すべきかすべきでないか」という意味に解釈できる。

他に、「生きるべきか、死ぬべきか、それが問題だ」(2003年、河合祥一郎 『新訳 ハムレット』角川文庫)などがあり、たった一文に対して翻訳者ごとに異なった40以上もの翻訳文が提示されている。

It’s really interesting! I hadn’t considered that the concept of “to be” is so different between Japanese and English that this would be impossible to perfectly capture in Japanese.

Definitely a couple fun か examples in there, haha, though I was a bit surprised by the earliest translation not having it.



No luck finding this one in my Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling translations, but it might be less common in this setting because they’re women wrestlers, haha.

Note 4 says that questions in female informal speech can be formed by dropping かい in male informal questions and using rising intonation. I didn’t get the impression that this was particularly gendered, but I’ve definitely seen this many times before!

I have billions of examples of this, but here's one from some backstage comments that I thought were particularly funny. This is after Kamiyu (Yuki Kamifuku) and Mahiro Kiryu lost their tag team tournament match against Moka Miyamoto and Juria Nagano on 2023.01.15:

Hard mode: here’s the video.


Kamifuku: “What the hell are you doing?”


Kiryu: “I’m so sorry…”

上福「お前! せっかくトーナメント始まったのに、何やってんだよ。あんなウルトラの母みたいな髪型してるやつに負けちゃって。ねー、どうして!(しばし間を空けて)…言い過ぎたよ。嘘だよ」

Kamifuku: “Hey! The tournament just started—What the hell is this? You lost to a woman with a hairstyle that looks like the Mother of Ultra, huh? WHY!” (brief pause) “…I went too far, didn’t I? Hey, I’m just kidding.”


Kiryu: “No, but I’m really…”


Kamifuku: “Sometimes you just lose. I lose sometimes, too. Do you want to go get something to eat?”


Kiryu: “C-crab…”


Kamifuku: “Crab?”


Kiryu: “Crab omelet…”


Kamifuku: “Well, it’s cheap. Let’s go.”


This one took me a long, long time to learn at first because there sure are a lot of syllables you have to remember :sweat_smile:. It doesn’t really cause me trouble anymore, though.

Tofugu has a great article on Japanese expressions for different levels of uncertainty, which covers the three listed under related expressions I plus a whole bunch more.

Here’s from that article:

〜かもしれない is the Japanese equivalent of “may” or “might.” It communicates the implication that something may be true, but you’re not completely sure. In other words, it refers to your guess when there is no concrete proof to support it.

Let’s use the same scenario of you sneezing. Instead of “you wonder,” you think you might have a cold. In this case, you can use 〜かもしれない and say:

I might have a cold.

Here, 〜かもしれない shows that even if you suspect that you might have a cold, you aren’t so sure. If you’re very certain that your sneeze is being caused by a cold, you shouldn’t use 〜かもしれない.

Note that 〜かもしれない is often shortened to just 〜かも in casual conversation, or in self-directed speech. So if you now have some chills and are telling your family member that you might develop a fever, it’s common to drop しれない and say:

I may develop a fever.

Although it is grammatically incorrect, some people use 〜かも with です to lend a sense of casual politeness. So if you’re telling one of your superiors at work that you’re friendly with that you might get a fever, you could say:

I may develop a fever.

However, you would use the proper polite form, 〜かもしれません, if you were speaking to another senior employee with whom you have a stiff, square relationship.

I may develop a fever.

I have another example from Kamiyu that's pretty funny, haha. This is from her comments after losing to Janai Kai in TJPW's first show in America on 2023.03.31:

Hard mode: here’s the video.


Kamifuku: “Even though I came all this way to L.A., even though my beloved Zac Efron might be watching, I lost to a girl with natural makeup. Mortifying. Something I noticed is that she wrestles barefoot, but her nails are too simple, and she uses polish instead of gel nails. Someday, when she comes to Japan, I’ll take her to a nail salon. Prepare yourself, and let’s go to the nail salon together.” (in English) “Bye bye.”


Week 11 is here with から3 to きらいだ, 7 entries this week.

This is only the official notice of week 11 starting. Nothing special, feel free to discuss any K entries at any time. :slight_smile:



When I first learned から 2 and から 3, I despaired at having to keep their meanings straight, but I realized when reading the entries today that I don’t think this has caused me trouble in a long time, so I guess I managed to figure it out!

Here’s an example from Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling that contains both:

This is from the Korakuen Hall show on May 5 after Mizuki successfully defended her title against Sawyer Wreck, then had Maki Itoh come out to challenge for it next:

This is from the closing promo in the show, not the post-match comments, so I can’t link the video, sorry!


Mizuki: “It was thanks to Itoh-san that I became able to use strong words like this. Ever since losing to her for the first time in the tournament, I’ve thought that I absolutely have to win, and I don’t want to lose to her. I’m going to keep defending the tag belt and the singles belt, too. Let’s spend the hot summer together!”

For から 1, I’ll share an example from Pro Wrestling NOAH to try to spice things up, haha. This use of から has come up a lot for Go Shiozaki and Katsuhiko Nakajima’s newly reunited tag team, AXIZ, because they’re very focused on what’s coming next for them after taking a bit to really find their footing as a team again.

This is from May 21, when they picked up their first win as a tag team after coming back:

Hard mode: here’s the video. The transcription of the Japanese and the English translation are the official ones provided by the company.


Katsuhiko Nakajima: "As you can see, AXIZ is getting better day by day.”


Go Shiozaki: "Yes, I’ve really been losing a lot, but from here, from today, AXIZ is going to take off.”


Katsuhiko Nakajima: "AXIZ, don’t miss us.”

At first I thought of these three uses of から as pretty distinct, but I don’t feel that they’re so different anymore, conceptually, at least. Interestingly, the English word “since” also works for all three meanings (though it isn’t a good gloss for all possible uses), so I think we sort of have a similar concept, too.

The note in から 1 is a good one to remember. It says that から basically indicates a temporal or spacial starting point or a source. A source can be a person, material, a cause, or a reason.


Page 192, かしら, Note 3: “Sfml かしら is acceptable if the situation is very formal”.
Got a bit confused with what “Sfml” is but I think I figured it out, so just in case it can help someone else, I think it means “Sentence formal” (like Sinf is the Sentence at the infinite tense)

@Twelvewishes, looking forward to the Bunpro links, if you’re willing to continue finding them :smiley: otherwise I can help with that :slight_smile:

&Last comment on this week’s reading, after the great quote recently about “you can’t really emphasize with a dead person”, this week is bringing us a completely unrealistic sentence 私はチーズがきらいだ. Well at least I can’t relate at all, maybe some people can :sweat_smile:


I’ll be too busy to read new grammar on the weekend, so they’ll be updated on Monday at the earliest. I don’t mind if someone does it first, looking for links between material and finding other sources is fun and I don’t want to deprive anyone of that if they want to do it themselves.



As I mentioned in a previous thread for this club, I’ve only seen one example of this in my wrestling translations so far!

Here it is, courtesy of Sakisama:


I have kind of a funny example of getting confused by this one recently, haha. Generally I don’t feel like I have any trouble with it, but I totally got tricked by this tweet:


This tweet was from the producer of a wrestling photobook who was responding to a fan’s impression of a photo at the end of the book, which seemed to foreshadow the wrestlers reuniting almost three years later (the initial breakup happened almost immediately after the photobook came out).

I was totally confused by “見る方の感じ方” at first because I didn’t notice that 見る方 wasn’t that same Vます 方 pattern, so I was trying to read it as like: “way of viewing’s way of feeling” which just plain doesn’t make sense, haha. But I believe it’s 方 as in one’s side, so “viewing side”, which basically just means “the viewer”! So “見る方の感じ方” is “the viewer’s way of feeling”, or maybe “viewer’s perception” is a more natural way to translate that, haha.

I also didn’t understand at first how the meaning of 方 as described in the dictionary here could be ambiguous, but I think I puzzled it over enough after reading note 1 that I managed to figure it out :sweat_smile:.


I think I have to read many more examples, because I still struggle with this one. Thank you for the example sentences! I think I’m right at the cusp of understanding, I’ll puzzle over it some more.



I was actually a bit surprised by this one because I knew the “in place of” and “instead of” meanings, but didn’t know the “to make up for” and “although” or “but” meanings. So examples (c) through (g) were a bit unexpected to me, and the note under related expressions that it can sometimes be replaced by けれど(も) or しかし was a surprise!

I got curious if I’d seen any of those other meanings in my Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling translations, but after a quick search, it looks like the answer is no. There weren’t a whole lot of instances of 代わり (all of them were spelled with the kanji), but all of them were along the lines of examples (a) or (b).

Here's one particularly notable instance, when Pom Harajuku had to step up and take Raku's place very last-minute in a tag team championship match that Raku was unable to take part in. This is from the 2022.11.24 contract signing a couple days before the title match:

Here’s the transcript of the whole contract signing for context, and the video (timestamped at the below part). Good luck listening, though, because Pom is crying throughout the whole thing :sweat_smile:.


Pom: (crying) “I know that Raku-san and Yuki-san were working hard together to challenge. They’re very close, but Yuki-san and I are also close, and I think she was worried about whether it was okay for them to team together without me, and I think Raku-san was also thinking about me, and I was also thinking about the two of them, and I’m challenging for the belt that I wanted to see the two of them win, and I wanted Raku-san to be here! But since I’m here instead of her, I want to win the belt and divide it into three parts so that we can all wear it.” (crying) “That’s what I regret the most, that Raku-san isn’t here!” (crying)

Has anyone else seen instances along the lines of examples (c) through (g) anywhere in the wild?



I believe it’s V-stem + 方(かた).

For 勉強(べんきょう)の仕方(しかた), perhaps it is implied that 勉強(べんきょう)し方(かた) can’t be used, since that’s the stem form of 勉強(べんきょう)する; and the sound would be similar to 仕方(しかた) without の.

Then there is also 勉強(べんきょう)の方法(ほうほう). I am more accustomed to this one.

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I get plenty of hits for 代わりに and even more for かわりに in the mangas I have, but they are in pretty short sentences so I can’t see any that fits the description at a glance. I guess it is typical of Japanese, what it “replaces” is probably implied for the context and not necessarily written.
When I get a bit of time I will try to read through the sentences in context and will update you if I find some sentences that I think match the examples (c) through (g)!


から2: I found the related expression part of this entry confusing. Beyond the syntax and stuff of the first sentence being confusing enough I had to reread the sentence multiple times and basically read it backwards (hello skill I learned for Japanese coming in handy for English :woman_facepalming:).

It says から can be dropped when there is not a high degree of volitional. For commands and such. And then it has a sentence with a command where the から can’t be dropped. The exact opposite of what it just said.

It was only thinking about the heading “related expression” and the last sentence in the section that made me realize what it was trying to do was compare and contrast てから and て (as “and”, I guess). Because the first sentence seemed to me it was discussing when から could be dropped and it would still be understandable as てから, but what it really was saying is when から can be dropped because only て works by itself and から is not necessary.

So yeah, I’m putting this here in case someone else gets confused by this too. This section is not really talking about when から can be omitted, but whether just plain て-form is enough.


I don’t feel I have seen けども, but of course it exists.

I don’t think much of けれども or しかし when I see かわりに. Also, が2 isn’t mentioned at all.


Mmm, “can be omitted if the main verb does not indicate a high degree of volitional control on the part of the speaker as in the cases of a strong suggestion, determination or a command” is listing commands etc as examples of when there is a high degree of volition, not as examples of when kara can be omitted, but it could really have benefited from rephrasing to be a bit clearer and less ambiguous…

Doing the contrast of て and てから as if the former was the latter with から dropped struck me as a bit odd too, since that isn’t what’s actually happening with て sentences imho.


I can’t see how the sentence can mean what you say it means. If that was their intention, the sentence is even more broken than I thought. I thought it was bad enough that “if the main verb does not indicate a high degree of volitional control on the part of the speaker” was already a convoluted and hard to understand way to phrase it (don’t add “not” to an already convoluted phrasing and expect anyone to understand it on 1st, 2nd or 3rd read), but if “as in the cases of a strong suggestion, determination or a command” only connects to “a high degree of volitional control”, then I give up.

That sentence does not mean what it thinks it means.

I’m not even sure it is worth it for me to go back and figure it out. To see if I can see what you’re saying is in that convoluted sentence. Because figuring out if から can be omitted and instead be just て when it isn’t actually about から being omitted, but just another way to phrase it…