How do Adnomial Adjectives work compared to standard Adjectives (or Adverbs?)

How does the adnomial adjective 小さな differ in meaning and use in sentences compared to the standard adjective form 小さい? Where would you put each of these in a sentence?

I’m using’s explanation ( and while I like how thorough this site is, this explanation isn’t sticking with me as well as most of the others are.

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That page has a section devoted to 小さい/小さな with example sentences. I don’t really see how we can do better…?

Mmm I guess I read through it too quickly, and now its making a bit more sense, still I was kind of just hoping for a simpler explanation of how adnomials differ from adjectives in general.

It says that い adjective forms are objective and used with concrete things, generally, and な adjective forms are subjective and used with abstract things, generally.

I wasn’t familiar with that particular nuance before reading the page, and don’t think we can do much better.

I don’t really get it from skimming the link you sent, but I’ll try to read through the page again so I can learn something.

However, the real reason I’m replying is to say how happy I am that I was able to correctly read 小さな in your original post, and it’s all because I just learned 小さい in my WaniKani lessons. :grinning:

Thanks WaniKani, I’m really learning this stuff!!!

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On the other hand, Google gives a lot more results for 小さな木 compared to 小さい木. My impression so far was that you use 小さな in a non-formal, less emotionally-affected setting, and 小さい for formal objectiveness. Might be wrong though, so grain of salt.

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