Difference between 丸いテーブル and 丸テーブル

Both sentences share the same meaning (= round table), but I don’t understand why I would use the adjective form (い) or not?

Adjective: 丸いテーブル
No adjective: 丸テーブル

Thanks in advance for your answers!

What’s the difference between a “science fair” and a “scientific fair”?

None, two ways of saying the same thing (composition vs. adjective), but one’s more common.


丸テーブル seems more like a shortcut where you’d use 丸 as a prefix. In that capacity, you treat 丸テーブル like a new compound word, not two separate words linked together. This kind of thing happens pretty often, mostly with nouns, but not only.

As with any language, there’s multiple ways of saying the same thing. I think in this case it’s a matter of focus. If you say 丸いテーブル you emphasize that it’s a table, and the shape is round. For 丸テーブル you refer to the entire category of “round tables”, if that makes sense. The meaning is the same, but the point of focus is different.


I think they meant “no adjective” as in “lacking an adjective” but maybe I’m wrong.

They may be unaware that “no adjective” is a thing.


Now that you mention it, that’s probably true. My bad, thought a bit too hard about it :sweat_smile:

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