When, if ever, can も be combined with other particles? (Related: How do you more naturally determine what particles it replaces?)

(Please ignore the inactive account; I’m overseas and getting transfers set up after my bank deactivated my Wanikani card; should be renewing shortly. Anyway!)

This is something I’ve never found a clear answer on. I feel like in everyday speech, I’ve heard particles be combined right after a word, and there are times when, to me, as a non-native speaker, it seems intuitive to combine a contextualizing particle like は or で (or に) with も.

Ex. “Rider’s jackets are often called leather jackets too, aren’t they?”

Or “That was popular in America too.”

Is it ever actually grammatically acceptable to do something like

“「Rider’s jackets」はもよく「leather jackets」と呼ばれていますね。” (Would it be much more natural here to avoid the problem by letting も replace と instead? This is also something I struggle with.)



Or is that completely janky? I’m aware にも also has its own connotations in certain phrases that could make this more confusing, as in 「誰にも」 etc. も can also lead into contradictory clauses, which makes it even harder.

If not, what is the more natural way into sentences that call for も, since it seems so blunt and non-contextualizing on its own?

I feel like I have more doubts when it comes to this little “also” particle than I do with any other. Thanks for your help!

To answer your question(s): no no yes depends.

も can be added onto any particle except for は and が、 which it must replace. Why? Because は implies a contrastive relationship with the sentence or clause that was uttered before (or sentence assumed to be uttered after, or expectation assumed to be in the listener’s head), while が implies identification, both of which are mutually exclusive with the “both” idea of も.

So, アメリカでも is fine, tho it does rest on the assumption that the previous sentence mentioned somewhere else where the jackets are popular, and the more natural way in speech to express it would be to cram both your も groups in the same sentence (e.g.: それは、日本でも、アメリカでも人気がありました。

The first example is a little bit tougher. The も cannot replace the と in your example because ironically in the original english you’ve actually dropped a substantive amount of information (which is an example of english having a surprisingly Japanese language habit). The sentence
“Riders jackets are also called leather jackets” is actually missing an implicit subject/clause, which if included entered would give you one of two grammatical yet unnaturally redundant-sounding sentences:

  1. “[The things that are called] riders jackets are also called leather jackets.”
  2. Riders jackets are also called leather jackets (in addition to being called riders jackets).

Now to translate that idea smoothly into japanese, you can (and probably should) use a translation of sentence 1:

「Rider’s jackets」ということは「leather jackets」もと呼ばれていますね。

The only trick with this sentence is it still sounds unnatural in japanese (at least to me), because that sentence construction makes it difficult to discern whether you mean the jackets are called by both names simultaneously (oh, it’s a rider-jacket-leather-jacket), or that the jackets are sometimes referred to as ‘leather jacketsmo’ (since we can’t hear the end quotation in speech, just the と), or perhaps are just called different names at different times by different people, maybe according to dialect.

In order to ensure that you’re only communicating last meaning, the one you I believe you were originally going for, I think you’d probably want to change your 呼ばれます into short form 呼ばれる and use the 時がある construction to work in the も、as in:

「Rider’s jackets」というのは「leather jackets」と呼ばれる時ありますね。

This would literally mean something
“There also times in which ‘riders jackets’ are referred to as ‘leather jackets,’ right?”
which sounds odd in English but makes more sense in Japanese.

That said though, I’m right at the edge of my grammar knowledge here, so if @Leebo or @vargsvans one of the other 60s wanna take a crack at it, maybe they might be able to give you a better sounding option. I haven’t made or seen a sentence like that before, so I’m making an educated guess.

Hope it helps!


Thank you so much for the thorough explanation! The first half is really helpful.

Your assessment of the second example (sorry I left out so much context; it was actually taken straight from a question I was attempting to answer on HiNative) is spot on, and the final translation not only reads more smoothly, but gives me a good model for how I can incorporate both も and appropriate context into similar sentences in the future.

I need to remember to work in というのは (clunky to my English-speaking brain but much smoother in Japanese) in those situations too, but that’s another thing.

It would also probably be helpful from now on to un-train myself from thinking of it as “also,” and begin thinking of it as the more appropriate “both.” (Though really I guess it matches some aspects of each without completely being either.)

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I’m pretty sure も will always replace the preceding は、が orを but not any other particles.


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