How and when to use のに(=noni) *Request Lesson


= Inu nanoni Viton ga hoshii no?

= Even though you are a dog, you want a Louis Vuitton (bag)?


=Onaji joshi nanoni watashi no kimochi ga wakaranai no?

= How can you — as a woman — not understand how I feel?

Today’s lesson is for Katy who recently requested a lesson on  のに(=noni).

I have a long list of requests, and I’m slowly and randomly going through it.  If you’ve requested  earlier please wait patiently.

Let’s get started!

:: のに(=noni) although, despite the fact, even though

It is used to combine two sentences.

!to right! (Sentence A) のに(Sentence B)

Despite the fact (Sentence A)(Sentence B)

For example, if you


= ippai benkyou shita

= studied a lot

The expected result should be



= shiken ni ukatta

= passed the exams

However, if you failed the exam, you would say



= Ippai benkyou shita noni shiken ni ochita.

= Although I studied a lot, I failed the exam.


Another example. As you know I am adorable.


= Maggie sensei wa kawaii

= Maggie sensei is cute

Everybody expects me to be sweet, right? :)

But I am, in fact, very


= kibishii
= strict, severe

So you can say,



= Maggie sensei wa kawaii noni kibishii

= Although Maggie Sensei is cute, she is strict.

So you say something in Sentence A and then you say something that contradicts conditions or consequences in Sentence B.

!star! Formation

:s: Adjectives

(=i)-adjecive : basic form + のに(=noni)

*高い(=takai) high, expensive, tall + のに(=noni)

:rrrr: 高いのに(=takai noni)

Ex. 父は背が高いのに僕は低い。

= Chichi wa se ga takai noni boku wa hikui.

= Although my father is tall, I am short.

*美味しい(=oishii) = delicious + のに(=noni)

:rrrr: 美味しいのに(=oishiii noni)

Ex. 美味しいのにお腹が一杯で食べられない。

= Oishii noni onakaga ippai de taberarenai.

= Although it’s delicious, I can’t eat it because I’m full.

(=i)-adjectivepast tense

*早い(=hayai) quick, early, fast (past tense) 早かった(=hayakatta) + のに(=noni)

:rrrr: 早かったのに(=hayakatta noni)

Ex. 昨日は帰りが早かったのに夜遅くまでテレビを観ていたので 眠い。

= Kinou wa kaeri ga hayakatta noni yoru osoku made terebi wo miteita node nemui

= I got home early but since I stayed up late watching TV, I am sleepy.

(=na)- adjective ~(=na) + のに(=noni)

*きれい(=kirei) = beautiful, pretty(=na) form きれい(=kireina) +(=noni)


Ex. この部屋はいつもはきれいのに今日はちらかっている。

= Kono heya wa itumo kireinanoni kyou wa  chirakatte iru.

= Although this room is usually  clean, it’s messy today.

*元気 (=genki) healthy, cheerful, energetic(=na) form 元気(=genkina) + のに(=noni)

:rrrr:元気なのに(=genki nanoni)

Ex. マギー、いつも元気のにどうしたの?

= Maggie, itsumo genki nanoni doushitano?

= What is wrong with you? (It’s unlike you not to be energetic/cheerful.)

(=na)- adjective past tense

*静か(=shizuka) →past tense 静かだった(=shizukadatta) +のに(=noni)

:rrrr:静かだったのに(=shizukadatta noni)

:s: Verbs:

(present tense/ past tense ) basic form+ のに (=noni)

*する (=suru) = to do + のに(=noni) →するのに (=suru noni)

Ex. いつも彼が料理をするのに今日はやってくれなかった。

= Itsumo kare ga ryouri wo suru noni kyou wa yatte kurenakatta.

= He always cooks, but he didn’t do that for us today.

*書く(=kaku) = to write → (past tense) 書いた(=kaita) + のに(=noni)

:rrrr: 書いたのに (=kaita noni)

Ex. せっかく手紙を書いたのになくしてしまった。

= Sekkaku tegami wo kaitta noni nakushite shimatta.

= Although I wrote a letter, I lost it.

Note : せっかく (=sekkaku) is often used with のに(=noni) to emphasize one’s disappointment after all the work or trouble they had.

せっかくのに (= sekkaku ~ noni) : after all the trouble you made, the consequence was disappointing.

Ex. せっかく料理したのに誰も食べてくれない。

= Sekkaku ryouri shita noni daremo tabete kurenai.

= After I went to all the trouble of cooking, nobody is eating.

Ex. お金がないのに旅行に行くの?

= Okane ga nai noni ryokou ni ikuno?

= You don’t have any money, but you’re going on a trip?

:s: noun

noun + (=na)  + のに(=noni)

Ex. (=inu)=a dog (=inu na)  + のに (=noni) : even though, despite being a dog

:rrrr: のに(=inu nanoni)

Ex. のに日本語を教えている。

= Inu nanoni nihongo wo oshieteiru.

=Despite being a dog, (she) teaches Japanese.

!to right! From the picture above :


= Inu nanoni Viton ga hoshii no?

Even though you are a dog, you want a Louis Vuitton (bag)?


= Onaji joshi nanoni watashi no kimochi ga wakaranai no?

[Literal translation: Even though you are a woman, don’t you understand my feelings?]

= You are a woman as well and you still don’t know how I feel?

Note : There is a trend to use 女子(=joshi) more than 女性(=josei) in colloquial Japanese.

past tense noun + だった (=datta) + のに (=noni)

* (=hana) flowers +だった(=datta) = 花だった(=hanadatta) + のに(=noni)

:rrrr: 花だったのに (=hanadatta noni)

Ex. きれいな花だったのに枯れてしまった。

= Kireina hanadatta noni karete shimatta.

= The flowers were beautiful, but they wilted.

:s: Others

ばかりな/ばかりだった + のに(=noni)

:mm: present tense:

ばかり (=bakari) + (=na) + のに (=noni)

Ex. 食べたばかりのにもうお腹がすいた。

= Tabeta bakari nanoni mou onaka ga suita.

= I just ate, but  I am already hungry.

:n: past tense :

ばかりだった (=bakaridatta) + のに (=noni)

Ex. あの二人はこの間、結婚したばかりだったのにもう別れたらしい。

= Ano futari wa konoaida kekkon shita bakari datta noni mou wakareta rashii.

= I heard even though they (those two) just got married, they already got divorced.

:l: We often drop the main clause and finish the sentence with のに(=noni).

You can show your feelings of disappointment, regrets and discontent to the listener.

!star! Conditional :would have/ could have

!candy! (もし)〜たらのに = (moshi) ~ tara ~ noni =(If 〜 , ) subject would have/could have do something.

You tell people that you could have done something,


= (Moshi itte kuretara) Tetsudatte agetanoni…

= (If you had told me) I would have helped you…

Ex. もし彼が来るとしっていたらそのパーティーに行ったのに

= Moshi kare ga kuru to shitteitara sono paatii ni itta noni…

= If I had known he would have come to the party, I would have gone…

:i: Note : Now can you tell the difference between the following sentences?

A ) 誕生パーティーに行けたらいいのに

= Tanjou paatii ni iketara iinoni.

B) 誕生パーティーに行っいいのに

= Tanjou paatii ni ittara iinoni.

(*誕生パーティー= tanjou paatii = birthday party)


A) I wish I could go to the party.

B) I wish someone would go to the birthday party You should go to the party. (suggestion to other people.)

:rrrr: Please go check my たら(=tara) lesson for the details.

!star! to  express one’s  feeling of disappointment.

Ex. せっかく宿題をしたのに

= Sekkaku shukudai wo shita noni…

= After all the trouble of doing my homework…

!star! to complain  to someone  or give someone a suggestion:

Ex. あれだけ勉強しなさいって言ったのに….

= Aredake benkyou shinasaitte itta noni!

= (Why didn’t you study even though) I told you to study million of times.


= Motto nihongo no benkyou wo sureba ii noni.

= You should study Japanese more.


= Motto nihongo no benkyou wo sureba yokatta noni.

= You should have studied Japanese more.

Ex. だから言ったのに

= Dakara itta noni!

= (That’s why) I told you so.


Finally there is one more way to use のに(=noni)

!star! in order to, for , to do something, for the purpose of doing something

Formation :

:rrrr: verb (basic form ) + のに(=noni)

*買う(=kau) + のに (=noni) = 買うのに (=kau noni) in order to buy

Ex. そのコンサートのチケットを買うのに1時間も並ばなければいけなかった。

= Sono konsaato no chiketto wo kau noni ichijikan mo narabanakaereba ikenakatta.

= I had to stand in line over one hour to get a ticket for the concert.

*行く(=iku) + のに(=noni) = 行くのに(=ikunoni) in order to go

Ex. 旅行に行くのに5万円必要だ。

= Ryokou ni iku noni gomanen hitsuyouda.

= I need 50,000 yen to go traveling.

Ex. タクシーで駅まで行くのにいくら位かかりますか?

= Takushii de ekimade ikunoni ikura gurai kakarimasu ka?

= How much will it cost to the station?


Ex. ここに来るのにどの位の時間がかかりましたか?

= Kokoni kuru noni donogurai no jikan ga kakarimashitaka?

= How long did it take to get here?

Ex. 上級のレベルにたどりつくのにどれだけ勉強をしなければいけないことか….

= Joukyuu no reberu ni tadoritsuku noni doredake bennkyou wo shinakereba ikenai kotoka…

= I wonder how much I should study in order to reach advanced level….


= Kono keiki wo tsukuru noni tamago ga ikutsu irimasu ka?

= How many eggs do we need to make this cake?

マギー先生より = Maggie Sensei yori = From Maggie Sensei


= Aah okyuuryou wo zenbu tsukawanakatta ano Ruiviton no baggu ga kaetanonina.

= Ahh…If I hadn’t spent all my salary, I could have bought that Louis Vuitton bag.


Special note: If you speak French, Marianne translated this lesson in French. Go check my FB page.

Comment et quand utiliser のに(=noni)

Merci! Marianne! !heart3!


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  1. Hi Maggie sensei,

    I have the following sentence that uses “のに” and not sure which category it belongs to.
    Basically, this article is about Japanese are strict in following rules.

    ま、そこまで「きまり」を守らなくてもいい のに と あきれながら も、この「きまり」に対する 厳格さには感動を覚えた。

    I roughly understand the meaning of the sentence but not sure how “のに” work in this

    = it is better not to obey rules

    「きまり」を守らなくてもいい のに
    = “even though” it is better not to obey rules ?



    1. @Ken
      そこまで「きまり」を守らなくてもいい のに
      This のに is to express one’s feeling. The closest category will be
      →to complain to someone or give someone a suggestion:
      So the speaker is saying “(I think) They don’t have to obey the rules that much.”

  2. Whenever you have time, What exactly is the difference between…

    『のに』と『には』? to mean the same as for the purpose of?

  3. Maggie, こんにちは

    My friend wrote in an email: … 来ればいいのに? I take this to mean ‘why don’t you come?’ But I’m not sure how to use this structure. I get のに pretty much as a conjunction as you have explained, but not the one n my friends email. Can you help?


    1. @ポール

      来ればいいのに means “You should come (anyway)!”
      Maybe you turned down your friends’ invitation once, right? So they know you can’t come or it is difficult for you to come but they are trying to convince you again showing their feelings that they really want you to come.

  4. Ohayou sensei! ^^

    sensei, in けど、私がどんな話をしてもスライムさんは面倒くさがらずに真摯に話を聞いてくれた。話が進むにつれていつの間にか、これまでため込んでいた愚痴や村の子供のことなど聞いて気持ちのいいことじゃないことも結構言ったのに。

    is のに in that paragraph are the type that dropped their main clause?

    and the clause that is dropped is スライムさんは面倒くさがらずに真摯に話を聞いてくれた ?

    so the last sentence are actually 話が進むにつれていつの間にか、これまでため込んでいた愚痴や村の子供のことなど聞いて気持ちのいいことじゃないことも結構言ったのにスライムさんは面倒くさがらずに真摯に話を聞いてくれた。 ?

    1. @just a novel lover’s

      Ah, we sometimes do invert subject and object in literature. So that のに goes to 話を聞いてくれた


    2. ah, I almost forgot

      what do you think about the way that girl talk sensei?

      is that normal, casual, or too polite for a 19 years old girl?

  5. Quick question sensei!! When using “noni” to say “in order to; to do something”, is it compulsory to use the “no”? Can I say “neru niwa mada hayai” (to say it’s still early to go to bed) or is it necessary to use “neru noni mada hayai” ? I’ve been wondering if I can’t use the particle “ni” after a verb without nominalization. If it’s possible, what’s the difference with and without the “no”? Makes it a bit confusing with the other meaning of noni for me :/

    Thank you!

    1. @Sarah

      Hi Sarah
      You can say both 寝るにはまだ早い(=Neru niwa mada hayai) and 寝るのにはまだ早い (=neru no niwa mada hayai)
      We sometimes omit “の” for that usage when it is used as a subject. And the meaning is the same.
      Other example
      食べるのには困らない →食べるには困らない
      (But のには is more common)

        1. @Sarah

          Oh sorry! I didn’t write the translation.
          You use that phrase when you have enough money and no need to worry about “eating”
          食べること implies “to live”

  6. こんにちは!マギー先生!


    「If it’s only cooking, we could have fun…」ようなものかな。

    To put into context my language exchange partner previously said.


    1. @ソウコバン
      How about,
      “It would be fun if we just cooked.”
      “Just cooking would be fun”

    1. @joikoi

      You can’t use くせに when you are talking about yourself, Ex after all that work, although I did this….(+ disappointed result)

      ○せっかく作ったのに… (x せっかく作ったくせに..)

      But sometimes you can use them both and the translation is the same. However, くせに sounds much stronger.
      くせに is usually used to accuse someone or look down on someone.
      a) 犬のくせに日本語を教えている
      b) 犬なのに日本語を教えている
      a) sounds much stronger and I would take it as an insult so you have to be careful when to use.

  7. ありがとう、マギー



    1. @Cygnus

      「のに」も「ために」も二つとも”in order to/for” の意味で使います。だから同じ意味で使えます。



  8. I love this site, it helps me alot in learning japanese.
    Just one question,”whats the meaning of yappari and how to use it”.

    1. @Hubert Hansean

      Thank you for your comment! Right now I’m on vacation so that I can not give you the link but I made a mini lesson on yap pari. Please go to “Index for Mini lesson” and find the lesson under ヤ行(yagyou).

  9. Thank you very much!
    Just one question: is there any difference between のに and ように as “in order to” use, or can they be interchangeable?
    Thanks in advance! ^^

    1. @Mimi

      Hi Mimi!
      I know the translation for the certain function of のに and ように are both “in order to” but while のに is used to refer to simple procedure, method to do something or how much time it takes, ように is used when people try to make things work as they want so they are not interchangeable.

      Ex. このケーキを作るのに卵が何個いりますか?
      →can’t say このケーキをつくるように卵が何個いりますか?
      But if you try to make a difficult cake,

      Ex. こんなケーキが作れるようにがんばります。
      (You can’t say こんなケーキが作れるのにがんばります。)

      I have よう lesson made so pleas check it.

  10. マギー先生、教えてくれてどうもありがとう!

    I write entries in lang-8 to study japanese, and because I like it a lot.

    Some people always correct me with this のに, so I was searching what was the use of のに, thank you very much, now I understand.

    Note: Lang-8 is a site where you write entries in one language that you are learning and then native speakers correct that entry, I have learned a lot because of that.

    1. @Cantabile

      日本語を勉強しるのに(Maybe it’s typo but just in case..)

      またこのサイトにも勉強しにきてね。 !happyface!

  11. またいい勉強になりましたね,マギー先生。


    1. @Remi

      OK, just fix 興味があってる→興味がある

  12. マギー先生返事をありがとうございます。


    1. @katy

      A) althoughの「のに」

      B) in order to/to/forの「のに」

      First A) is used to connect two contradicted sentences. I think you already got this one so no problem, right?
      B) is usually used to indicate(or suggest) how to do it, what you need to do, how much time/money it takes/costs to do something/to go somewhere.

      Ex. いつもは会社に車で行くのに今日は電車で行く。(two contradicted sentences:いつもは車で行く vs 今日は電車で行く)
      Ex. 今日は道が混んでいるから会社に行くのに電車で行った方がいいよ。(suggestion: Because the streets are crowded today, you should use the train to go to the office. )

      Ex. スプーンを使った方が便利なのにどうして箸(はし)を使うの?(two contradicted sentences:スプーンを使うvs 箸を使う)
      Ex. 茶碗蒸(ちゃわんむ)しを食べるのに箸を使うのは難しい。(方法 : It is difficult to use chopsticks to eat “Chawanmushi”)

      あとは参考までに= Just for your information,
      These are grammatical differences :
      1) While A) is used with adjectives, nouns or verbs, B) is only used with verbs.
      2) A) usually has two contradicted facts or consequences.
      3) While A) can be finished with のに without finishing the sentence, we almost never finish the sentence in B)
      4) We can use both present tense/past tense in A), we only use present tense in B)

      Feel free to make a sentence using the last “noni” here. I can always correct you.

      1. Thank you very much!




        1. @Katy

          ほとんど使い方は完璧(かんぺき)です。 !star!
          わからなかったのに、わかります!→(to be more clear why don’t you add “before” and “after”) 前はわからなかったのに今はわかります。
          このサイトは日本語を勉強するのに、いい勉強になります!→We don’t say 勉強するのにいい勉強になる because it’s redundant. How about something like このサイトは日本語を勉強するのに役に立ちます。

  13. マギー先生こんにちわ。


    1. @katy


      Hi, katy! I am glad that you checked this lesson.
      What do you mean by the second “のに” =ふたつめの”のに”
      The conditional one? Or the one “in order to”? You didn’t understand well and you want more explanation?
      If you have a question, just let me know,OK? I will add some explanation. :grin:

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