Short Grammar Questions (Part 2)

There are two ways to form the causative: see the “The 〜さす Short Form” subsection of the tofugu page on causative. Then you can stick the passive on the end of either of those.


And here’s everything makes sense now!

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The の particle is giving me a headache. In the patterns of use of the word 谷 both 谷の〜 and 〜の谷 appear and I can’t figure out what the difference is in deciding which one to use. For the first one it gives these examples 谷の水、谷の下、谷の入り口 and for the second one いくつかの谷、左の谷、花の谷. Would I be able to swap all of those around or is there something I’m missing?

Thank you in advance!!

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So the の particle lets you modify one noun with another; as always with Japanese the modified word is last, and so when you say XのY what you have is a particular kind of Y. So 谷の水 is water, specifically valley water; 谷の入り口 is a particular entrance, specifically the entrance to a/the valley. But 左の谷 is a particular valley, specifically the one on the left; and 花の谷 is also a particular valley, in this case the one with the flowers.

Sometimes it’s possible grammatically to swap them round, but it changes the meaning. So 花の谷 is “the valley of/with the flowers” but 谷の花 is “the flowers from/of the valley”.

の can express quite a lot of different relations between the two nouns, eg possession (like ジョンさんのペン) or the location where something exists (谷の水) or what something is made of (れんがの家 a house made of brick) which in English we would often use different words for, but they’re all the same basic “be more specific about exactly what Y you’re talking about”. The Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar’s article on の has some good examples which it sorts out into various different meanings.


Thank you! This helped me a lot!

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Question (posted this in my demon slayer reading thread but it’s more desert than the actual desert lol)


I know that Xてから grammar stands for "after doing X but I couldn’t find nothing about からが, how is が working here? Subject? Conjunction?
What is つき(始め)? I suppose it’s not the “beginning of the month” meaning (ケチがつく, to suffer a stroke of bad luck)


this sentence likely could be translated as “when I was defeated by that punk, it was the start of my bad luck.” or “being defeated by that punk is the start of my bad luck.” てからが by itself can sometimes mean something along the lines of さえも as in “even x” showing some manner of disbelief. It’s pretty archaic though. In this sentence I would think of every thing beforeが as meaning “being beaten by that kid/punk,” and then が marks what that phrase does (is the start of some bad luck)


Oh so the が here is marking the subject.

Got it, thanks for the clear explanation :+1:




Two people (one injured) are talking when suddenly an enemy arrives with a burst and attack the injured guy almost killing him, but is defended by the non injured guy, which asks this to the foe.

I don’t understand why から is used instead of something else. Shouldn’t there be を?

Kara can be used to indicate a starting point.

I don’t know the context, but there should be multiple people they could have targeted, and they chose to start with the one that was wounded. If it was wo it would have just been targeting a wounded person and not imply they intended to attack anyone else.


hmm I see, now it makes sense. I already met kara being used in such a way but I strongly expected 狙う to be used differently so wasn’t sure. Thanks!

Is there an actual question mark in the manga? The use of an internal か suggests it’s more of a rhetorical thing from the speaker, not a question to someone.

Used differently in what sense? As in, targeting/aiming at something/someone physically?


Yeah, same here. The meaning here seems clear, か is marking the “question” 理解できない is referring to. I’ve seen this referred to as embedded question, and unless there’s some indication otherwise (like a quotation marker or something) I’d expect an internal か like this to function that way.

One reference on the topic:

cc @mariodesu


No question marks, and I had this same thought


Maybe I phrased it in a wrong way, I meant that I was expecting to see someone aiming precisely at someone/something and maybe the を particle, から didn’t really make sense to me at first even though I had considered it may have been referring to who he’s started the attack on (there were various people in total but only 2 on the main scene, nevertheless many others may have been the object of the attack, if not even the other guy of the two)

Thanks, interesting!

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I have a grammar question.

Edit, found an answer:

I’m reading a manga and in some sentences it’s repetitively used のじゃない to say “do not”, in a way that to me sounds like an imperative, but I’m not sure in what way saying Xじゃない! differs (or equals) to Xなさい or X+any other imperative form.

Here’s the sentences in question:

弱気なこと言ってんじゃねぇ!!(強く) なれるかなれねぇかなんてくだらねぇこと言うんじゃねぇ!!

I suppose the first one, not contracted, is 言っているのではない that as far as I know literally means “saying it (what you’re saying) is not!”.

Why not say 言うな, or, is 言っているな possible or sensed in this sentence?

Side question, the first doubt I had when I first read those lines actually was: does this means “do not say X” or “you’re not saying X”? I couldn’t find a certain answer, I just think from context that the former is the correct interpretation.

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Verb plain ~んじゃない is a very rude way of saying don’t do that verb.



Can anyone explain what is 過ぎようとしていた here? I’m familiar with both the verb 過ぎる and the grammar ようとする/ようとしている but this couple with “4 months” as the subject doesn’t make any sense to me

Edit: I just got struck by an idea: (よ)うとしている tells that a change is about to happen, and in this case that change is the passing of 4 months (past in respect to who’s speaking) so the sense may be “4 months almost had passed since Mr. X’s death”

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Looks like you got it!


Yep, it’s about to be 4 months having passed, but that hasn’t quite happened yet. This is basically the same as eg 長かった浪人生活も終わろうとしています。“…is about to end, is coming to an end”.


Where did you take this sentence? It sounds extremely familiar. Anyway, always helpful to see such comparisons between same grammar in similar contexts!

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