List of Godan -iru / -eru Exception Verbs

Sometimes also known as “exceptions to the ru-exceptions”. The verbs that don’t drop their る when being conjugated, even though they end in (rhyme with) “iru” or “eru”. There are not that many so here they are. Based on this list.

(with thanks to @BIsTheAnswer )

  1. る-ending verb with an “iru” or “eru” sound at the end
  2. Kanji reading has more than one mora (i.e. 走る)
  3. i / e sound inside the Kanji not written as Okurigana

  4. Leaving the special exceptions at the end of this list to be just learned by heart

And that is probably not foolproof either, because language. Post exceptions to the exceptions to the exceptions to the exceptions in the comments.


Verb Definition Wanikani
愚痴(ぐち) to grumple, to complain WaniKani / Vocabulary / 愚痴
(はい) to enter, to join WaniKani / Vocabulary / 入る
(はし) to run WaniKani / Vocabulary / 走る
(かぎ) to limit, to restrict WaniKani / Vocabulary / 限る
(にぎ) to grip, to grasp WaniKani / Vocabulary / 握る
(おちい) to fall into WaniKani / Vocabulary / 陥る
滅入(めい) to feel depressed
(むし) to pluck, to pick
(ねじ) to screw, to twist
(ののし) to abuse, to curse at
野次(やじ) to jeer at, to catcall, to hackle


Verb Definition Wanikani
(あせ) to be in a hurry WaniKani / Vocabulary / 焦る
火照(ほて) to feel hot, to flush WaniKani / Vocabulary / 火照る
(かえ) to return, to come home WaniKani / Vocabulary / 帰る
(かげ) to darken, to be clouded WaniKani / Vocabulary / 陰
(くつがえ) to be overturned, to be overruled WaniKani / Vocabulary / 覆る
(ぬめ) to glide, to slide, to slip WaniKani / Vocabulary / 滑る
(しゃべ) to talk, to chat WaniKani / Vocabulary / 喋る
(しげ)る・(しげ) to grow thick, to be luxurious WaniKani / Vocabulary / 茂る
湿気(しけ) to get damp, to get soggy WaniKani / Vocabulary / 湿気
(すべ) to glide, to slide WaniKani / Vocabulary / 滑る
(たけ) to rage, to be excited WaniKani / Kanji / 猛
(よみがえ) to be resurrected, to be recalled (memories)

Special Exceptions
→ i / e sound in Okurigana but still Godan
→ Kanji with just one Mora
→ Kana only words

Verb Definition Wanikani Comment
(あぶら)ぎる to become greasy WaniKani / Kanji / 脂
() to fall, to scatter WaniKani / Vocabulary / 散る
()せる to cover, to lie down WaniKani / Vocabulary / 伏せる
() to decrease, to diminish WaniKani / Vocabulary / 減る
()る・() to roast WaniKani / Vocabulary / 煎る
() to need WaniKani / Vocabulary / 要る [usually kana]
()ける to soar, to fly WaniKani / Vocabulary / 翔る
(かじ) to gnaw, to knibble, to bite WaniKani / Kanji / 噛 [usually kana]
() to kick, to refuse WaniKani / Vocabulary / 蹴る
() to cut WaniKani / Vocabulary / 切る
(まい) to go, to come WaniKani / Vocabulary / 参る
()じる to be mixed, to be combined WaniKani / Vocabulary / 混じる
(なじ) to rebuke, to scold WaniKani / Kanji / 詰
(おもね) to flatter, to fawn on WaniKani / Kanji / 阿 [usually kana]
() to compete, to bid WaniKani / Kanji / 競
() to know WaniKani / Vocabulary / 知る
() to shine WaniKani / Kanji / 照
() to get in, to enter
() to knead, to refine, to temper
()じる to scale, to clamber up
千切(ちぎ) to tear to pieces [usually kana]
穿(ほじ) to dig up, to dig out [usually kana]
(ほとばし) to surge, to well up [usually kana]
(いじ) to fiddle with [usually kana]
(きし) to creak, to squeak [usually kana]
(こじ) to pry [usually kana]
(みなぎ) to overflow, to rise [usually kana]
(そし) to slander, to libel, to criticize [usually kana]
(たぎ) to boil, to seethe [usually kana]
魂消(たまげ) to be astonished, to be startled [usually kana]
(ふけ) to indulge in, to be obsessed by [usually kana]
(ひね) to twist, to wring [usually kana]
(つね) to pinch [usually kana]
(うね) to undulate, to meander, to twist [usually kana]
びびる to be surprised, to feel nervous
どじる to fail, to mess up [coll]
いびる to pick on, to tease
せびる to pester, to extort
くねる to wriggle, to be crooked
のめる to tumble forward
せせる to poke, to pick at

Best, topic, ever :laughing:


And that before i had even started :man_facepalming: Took a while typing it all out but here you go.

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Wow what a great list! Thank you so much for taking the time to type this out, I am going to save it to a google doc :slight_smile:

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By the way:

A lot of these fall under the pattern of having their e/i sound inside the kanji instead of in the okurigana, in which case they’re often godan instead of ichidan, especially for the longer verbs like 走る or 限る. That’s a pattern I use to reduce the list of exceptions I need to memorize a bit :grin:


Yeah, i was wondering how reliable that is but that looks very much like the way to go. I guess I’ll single those and the Kana-only words out and put them into their own group - thanks!

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It’s relatively reliable if the kanji has more than one mora in it like 走る, if it only has a single one there’s not really a pattern to it though. 見る is ichidan for example but 知る is godan. For the one mora variants you might even see variants where the only difference between words is whether they’re ichidan or godan, like 居る and 要る. But for the longer verbs it’s relatively reliable :grin:



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Btw I think of うねる or うね pretty regularly, because うね is what the ridges in fields, where the seeds are planted, are called. You see them every day in Japan, even in cities.

The kanji is 畝. It’s jouyou even!

Also I’m positive I’ve used undulate at some point, but anyway.


Might I suggest a table rather than an unordered list? A la

Verb Definition WaniKani Link
愚痴(ぐち) to grumple, to complain Vocabulary / 愚痴
(はい) to enter, to join Vocabulary / 入る
(はし) to run Vocabulary / 走る
(かぎ) to limit, to restrict Vocabulary / 限る

More concise, no?


Oh, interesting. I didn’t include it because my IME doesn’t let me produce it when typing うねる for some reason but I’ll edit accordingly, thanks! Only typing うね correctly suggests 畝 though :thinking:

Can do, will do and now i don’t know why i didn’t.

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