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I’m not quite sure what you mean by “differ only in grammar”. 交ぜる, 交じる, and 交わる are all distinct words. I get that they are similar and that that’s confusing, but I just wanted to see if you meant more than that.

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Well, any deck based page like Quizlet, or Anki and stuff like that would be useful to you, though there are also sites for conjugation practice, which would be the grammar you mention in other cases.

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交ぜる is “to mix something” and 交じる is “to be mixed.” Those aren’t distinct words, they’re transitive and intransitive forms of the same concept. “I read” vs “she reads the book.” Yes 交わる is a separate concept and much easier to tell apart because of it, but I think these get the point I was trying to make across.

They are different words in Japanese, which has a much clearer cut distinction between transitive and intransitive verbs than English does.


Doesn’t look very clear cut to me but ok.

English has this too, just not nearly as often. Take the verbs “drop” and “fall”. The former is transitive (“she dropped the ball down the stairs”), while the latter is intransitive (“the ball fell down the stairs”).

Regardless, for those Japanese words, the English translation doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter than in English “mixed” is a form of “mix”, because in Japanese they are different words. I understand this doesn’t help you remember which is which, but it’s still important to keep in mind.

Oh also, in some cases there are rules to know which verb in a pair (since these pairs are common in Japanese) is transitive and which is intransitive. Unfortunately those rules won’t help with the specific pair you asked about. :confused: But if you’re curious I’m happy to share (or someone else if they beat me to it).


So, to try to expand a bit, in case it helps: in Japanese every verb is either transitive (you can attach an object with を), or it isn’t. In quite a lot of cases, there are “transitive/intransitive pairs”, like 落とす “to drop something” vs 落ちる “to fall”. But these are separate verbs (although they likely had some shared origin 2000 years ago). Each verb inflects in the completely regular way that almost all Japanese verbs do, and if you see an 落とす without an を it doesn’t mean “being used intransitively”, it means “being used transitively and the object isn’t mentioned because it’s obvious in context”. While in theory I suppose you could think of 混ぜる and 交じる as different forms of a single verb, this is probably a bad idea because (a) this ‘verb’ is now irregular, and doesn’t behave like other verbs (b) it’s a more complicated way to try to learn it than as two verbs (c) nobody else (textbooks, dictionaries, native speakers, other learners) looks at them that way, so you’d need to convert back into the way everybody else thinks of them whenever you had a grammar question.


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