[aDoIJG] T 💮 A Dictionary of Intermidiate Japanese Grammar

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A Dictionary of Japanese Grammar :white_flower: Home Thread

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Start Date
Reading Entry Count Page Numbers Page Count
#24 Jun 15th たびに to て 6 442 - 456 15
#25 Jun 22nd て初めて to と言っても 6 456 - 477 22
#26 Jun 29th という風に to とかで 7 478 - 499 22
#27 Jul 6th ところ to とする1 7 500 - 523 24
#28 Jul 13th とする2 to つつ 7 523 - 550 28

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On ては, interestingly the Dictionary’s entry only covers one of the meanings ては can have. This page divides them into three:

  • if; because + bad result (the one the Dictionary describes)

  • whenever A happens, B

彼女は亡くした子どもの写真を見ては泣いた。-- She cried whenever she looked at a picture of her lost child

  • multiply repeated actions : this is usually AてはB, BてはA, but the second part can be omitted

立っては座り、座っては立ち、気分が落ち着かない – I keep standing and sitting down again, and can’t seem to settle down
久しぶりに山登りをした。歩いては休み、していたので、頂上までたどり着くのはずいぶん長い時間かかってしまった。 – It had been a while since I climbed a mountain. I kept resting after only walking for a bit and it ended up taking a long time before I reached the peak.


Really enjoyed the examples for というのは~ことだ with all the different sayings!



Hey, this is one I distinctly remember learning from my early Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling translations!

The meaning of “each/every time” is emphasized by inserting ごと between たび and に.

The tense of the verb that comes before たびに is restricted to nonpast.

The particle に of たびに can’t be dropped.

Sinf たびに, N の たびに, and VN の たびに can be paraphrased by Sinf 時(に)はいつ(で)も, N にはいつ(で)も, and VN する時はいつ(で)も respectively. However, they aren’t always synonymous. Since the tense of the verb that comes before たびに is restricted to nonpast, it can be ambiguous whether a sentence is referring to something happening during a verb or after it has finished.

Sinf たびに and N の たびに can also be paraphrased by Sinf・nonpast といつ(で)も. The original and the paraphrased version again mean practically the same. But the example here is not ambiguous like the previous one and means only the second meaning.

I'm choosing a sentimental example. This was from one of my earliest TJPW translations, the 2022.03.07 press conference before the first Grand Princess, TJPW's first show at Ryogoku Kokugikan, the long-awaited dream venue of the wrestlers. This contains the context sentence that's on my Anki card for this word:

Here’s the video of the press conference, and here’s the official transcript. What I didn’t remember about this quote until I looked it up was that the person speaking here is Yuna Manase, a former TJPW wrestler.


Manase: “I spent the longest part of my career as a wrestler with TJPW. And now TJPW is going to Ryogoku. For the four and a half years I was with TJPW, every time DDT had a Ryogoku show, I heard everyone at TJPW saying, ‘I want TJPW to go to Ryogoku someday’ (tears up), so when I heard about this show, I knew I had to participate."

It was DDT’s 2019 Ryogoku Kokugikan show Ultimate Party that set me on the path that I’m on today, so DDTの両国がある度に, and TJPWの両国がある度に, a part of me gets a bit emotional, too.


ただ is a device to emphasize such ideas as “only”, “just”, and “simply”. A sentence with ただ and one without ただ mean the same thing unless ただ is followed by one + counter の noun (ex. 一台の車 “a car”). In sentences that aren’t structured like that, the addition of ただ just makes the sentence more emphatic.

ただ can be used in a variety of sentence patterns, and the ones presented here are not exhaustive.

たった can be used instead of ただ when one + counter immediately follows. However, たった can’t replace ただ in other uses. ただ can’t be used to modify a number beyond one or to modify an adverb.

I searched for this and 143 results came up in just one document and I was like “oh no”. Turns out that not only is this common, but it’s in other common words/structures, too… I thought I’d search through maybe 10 or so and hope to get lucky, and sure enough, I did manage to find one!

This was from the 2024.06.23 TJPW show, where Nao Kakuta faced rookie Shino Suzuki in one of the shows leading up to Nao's retirement:

Hard mode: here’s the video.


Kakuta: “Before the match, I saw something like ‘I’m going to etch my name into her memory!’ on Shino’s social media, and truthfully I get it, but it surprised me. I thought, ‘sure, but I absolutely won’t lose’, and the timing never worked out for me to have many matches with Shino, but even so, I was like, ‘where has she been hiding that strength??’ There were so many things that surprised me during the match, and I think she really did etch her name.” (laughs) “Shino was a lot like me when she debuted. I’ve been saying on the sly that Shino, who has a lot of juniors, but couldn’t get any wins among them, there’s a lot of overlap there with my own debut. But the difference between us is that Shino is super positive, and she works hard all the time. I’m not good at putting in that kind of effort; I just crawled my way along in an environment where I had no choice but to do it. So when I came to TJPW, I gained a lot of confidence. That’s why I felt such a change in myself when I came to TJPW, and since Shino is in such a wonderful environment in TJPW, she’s growing remarkably fast. I want to watch over Shino’s growth even after I’m gone, and I hope I get to see her someday get a big win somewhere and really shine."


ただの N is used when the speaker makes nothing out of something/someone. So it can be used as a humble expression.

ただの N is similar in meaning to 普通の N which means “ordinary N”, but the latter doesn’t carry the former’s emotive overtone of “making nothing out of something/someone”, and is rather a neutral term to mean “not special” or “standard”. So when the emotive overtone is strong (including a case of humble expression), ただの can hardly be replaced by 普通の.

Here's an example that is not humble at all, haha. This was from TJPW's 2024.05.06 Korakuen Hall show, after Maki Itoh destroyed the rookie Haru Kazashiro in a singles match:

No video because this was said in the ring. Also, the beginning of it didn’t make it into the transcript, but I’ve included it in the translation for context.


Itoh: "Hey, weakling! You said it yourself didn’t you? ‘Today I’m going to try my very hardest, I’ll exceed what Itoh imagines of me’. But you’re just as I expected. You’re just a loser. But! Seeing you look so fucking pathetic, I’m sure everyone here is thinking about trying their best at school or work tomorrow. You said that I changed your life, but I think you’ve already changed a lot of people’s lives, and you’re already a hero to someone. So if you’re a hero, don’t say such lame-ass things like ‘Itoh’s my fave’ or ‘I want to be her.’ If you’re a hero, come crush Maki Itoh. I’ll see you then."


確かに~が is usually used when the speaker admits that something is certain or true but wants to say something in opposition to what is admitted.

~ことは~が can replace 確かに~が, but the latter sounds more subjective.

I don’t know if I’ve seen enough to confidently state this categorically, but I think this might in fact be the most common use of 確かに that I see in the wild.

Here's a TJPW example (I'm assuming that the けど version is basically the same) from the 2024.03.03 show, where Miyu Yamashita and Moka Miyamoto faced two of the 2023 rookies, Wakana Uehara and Toga.

Hard mode: here’s the video.

もか 凍雅ちゃんはデビュー1周年ということでどんどん強くなっているし。でも私たちも負けないぐらいどんどん成長するので。

Moka: “Since this is Toga-chan’s first anniversary, she has been getting stronger and stronger. But with as much as we’ve grown, too, she can’t beat us.”

山下 最近はわかなと地方でシングルしたり、凍雅とはタッグトーナメントで組んだりしてて。あの2人を最近見ることが多いですけど、確かに強くなっていると思うし、私もやっててテンションが上がるところがあるけど、まだまだまだまだ。気持ちはすごい強いなと思うけど、気持ちだけで勝てるものではないので。今日ガンガンいったので気付けたんじゃないかなと思います。まだ彼女たちは勝ちたいという気持ちだけだと思うんですよ。どうしたら勝てるのかというところを考えたらいいかなと思います。もかも勝ちたいという気持ちだけじゃなく、最近はこうすれば勝てるとかしっかり考えて闘っているなと見てて思うし、タッグを組んで心強いところもあるので。そういうところかな。すごく楽しかったです。

Yamashita: “Recently I had a singles match with Wakana at a show outside of Tokyo, and I teamed with Toga in the tag tournament. I’ve seen a lot of the two of them lately, and they’re definitely getting stronger, and doing matches with them gets me hyped up, but they still have a long way to go. I think they have strong feelings, but you can’t win with just feelings. I think they realized this today because they went all out. I think those girls still have only the desire to win. They should be thinking about how they can win. I think Moka has been thinking properly about how to win lately, not just feeling a desire to, and I felt reassured having her as my tag partner. I think that’s it. It was a lot of fun.”



I struggle a lot with keeping all the ところ structures straight in my head, so I just know this is one I’ve had trouble with before…

The conjunction たところで is used with Vinf・past. The past form is used not as the past tense marker, but as the counterfactual marker. So in every case what is expressed in the たところで clause has not taken place yet. What the conjunction really means is: “even if one supposes an action or a state in the clause has already taken place.”

The main clause usually takes an explicit negative marker ない, but there are cases in which the main clauses express something undesirable.

Vinf・past たところで can always be replaced by Vても. The difference between them is that the former has a clear counterfactual meaning, but the latter does not. This means that there are a lot of cases where Vても can’t be replaced by Vinf・past たところで.

Another difference is that the main clause for Vinf・past たところで has to be negative either explicitly or implicitly, whereas the main clause for Vても can be affirmative.

There were only a handful of たところでs that I could find in my Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling translation documents, but I don’t think any of them were this structure.


The てform in question is followed by a duration.

The antonym for Vて + N(duration) is Vinf・nonpast + N(duration) まえに. (I had a bit of trouble at first wrapping my brain around this as an “antonym”.)

All the てforms in the examples can be replaced by てから. The only difference is that てから focuses on the point in time at which something takes place, whereas て focuses on the duration of time following て.

I’m not going to look for examples of this one because it would be too much of a pain.


生まれて初めて is an idiomatic phrase which means “for the first time in one’s life”. Note that it does not mean “only after one was born” or “not until one was born”.

There were some instances of て初めて that I found in TJPW, but none of them had the “only after” nuance that this entry talks about. To me, they all seemed to be pretty straightforward “this was my first time ~ after ~” instances that is one of the basic てform meanings.

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Cross over! This week in Quartet 2 we are also reading on つつ
Quartet’s take:



点 can be followed by particles other than で.

The suffix 面 and the noun 点 express a similar idea. But as their original meanings (i.e. 面 “face, side”; 点 “point”) suggest, 面 reflects a more general, broader viewpoint than 点 does.

Here's an example from the Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling show on 2023.12.17, where Miu Watanabe faced Moka Miyamoto in a randomly drawn singles match with a 7 minute time limit:

Hard mode: here’s the video.

未詩「春日部大会、もかとシングルでしたー! 1年に1回のくじ引きで、もかと闘ったのは1年半前くらいの大阪でのタイトルマッチ以来なんですけど。その時よりももかも成長してるし、私も成長してるし、お互い急成長中なわけなんですけど。7分じゃ足りないなってカード聞いた時から思いつつ、でも7分間でお互いできることを精一杯やったし、無事に勝つことができたのでよかったです。春日部楽しかったでーす。(メインを任された形でした)そうですね、メインでしたね、たしかに(笑)。でもなんか、普段から試合順をあんまり気にしない方がいい派だと思っていて気にはしなかったですけど、やっぱりメインイベントという自覚は持ちつつ、ちゃんとお客さんに幸せになって帰ってもらいたいので…っていう気持ちはあったんですけど。でもその点、もかとだったらそういう不安感はなかったので。堂々と、お客さんが楽しかったらいいなって気持ちです」

Miu: “I had a singles match with Moka at the Kasukabe show! This random drawing happens once a year, and I hadn’t fought Moka since our title match in Osaka about a year and a half ago. Moka has grown a lot since then, and I’ve grown, too, and we’re both growing so rapidly. The moment I heard the match announced, I thought that 7 minutes wouldn’t be enough, but we both did the best we could do in 7 minutes, and I’m glad I was able to secure the win. Kasukabe was fun!”

(You were given the main event)

“Yes, I was in the main event, that’s for sure.” (laughs) “But typically I think it’s better not to pay too much attention to the match order, so I didn’t pay it much mind, but I was conscious of being in the main event after all, and I did want to make sure the audience went home happy… But in that respect, since it was with Moka, I didn’t have that sense of anxiety. I just wanted the audience to have a good time."


The conjunction ては is used to connect an action or state presented as a topic and a negative comment. The information of the ては clause is shared information and often includes the demonstrative adjective こ, そ, あ.

ては is etymologically Vて + は (topic marker), but it is used like a conjunction.

Vてはいけない, a phrase which indicates prohibition, is a special case of the ては construction.

I thought maybe I’d go looking for examples of this, but I underestimated the amount of totally different structures that result in a ては, so I think I’m going to have to skip it, which is unfortunate because I know I’ve struggled with this in the past.

Yeah, that is strange. I’ve definitely learned other uses, too, though I don’t think I’ve ever been super great at remembering them. I wonder if they left off the other uses by accident?