Maggie’s room

スクリーンショット 2013-06-19 1.06.47

Hi everyone! Thank you for visiting Maggie’s room.

I will try to answer your question here. But please make it simple. I can handle one or two questions. (If they are not too complicated..)

I love you all but please understand that  I will not translate your personal letters, messages, lyrics or help your homework here.

2,571 thoughts on “Maggie’s room

  1. Jasmine says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! I love your website, and it’s so so helpful for me! It’s really really helpful when you reply so fast, so thank you so much for that !heart3!
    I was doing a workbook the other day (I suck at particles!) and I had a little question:
    1. The book said 今日は天気がいい, but I thought it should 今日の天気がいい? And it also said 明日は天気がいい but again, I thought it should be 明日の天気がいい?
    2. The book said 祖母のしんぞうがよわい, but I thought it should’ve been 祖母のしんぞうがよわい? :!: :-|
    Thank you so much sensei! !CHECKHEART! !JYANE!

    • Maggie says:


      Hello, Jasimine
      I’m glad to hear you like my site. Thank you!

      1. OK, they both mean more or less the same but there is a subtle difference.
      今日は天気がいい= It’s as nice weather today. (Literal meaning Today is a nice weather”)
      今日の天気はいい= Today’s weather is nice.

      So when you just describe the weather, you say
      今日は天気がいい more.

      You say, 今日の天気、明日の天気 when you focus on the date.
      Therefore, you hear these more often in the weather report.

      = Let’s see today’s(tomorrow’s) weather.

      2. You means the difference between 祖母のしんぞうがよわい and 祖母は心臓がよわい?

      If so the same thing as above
      祖母はしんぞうがよわい = Focusing on 祖母’s condition.
      祖母のしんぞうが弱い = Focusing on 祖母のしんぞう

      When someone brings up the topics, you hear
      祖母は、しんぞうがよわい more.

  2. Rin says:

    Hi Sensei,
    I have hard time understand this sentence. So can you help understand it a bit. So far I only understand the first part about his outward appearance looks gaudy, and he’s highly calculated or something along the way. But what trouble me is the last part. So can you help me please sensei?


  3. Marianne says:

    一応って「for the time being 」「for now」という意味あるとレッスンで読みましたが、彼氏との話でその意味で使うと違うって言われます。「一旦」を使えばいいって。
    「For now」という意味使われると、「一応」と「一旦」の違いはなんですか?
    ありがとうございます!Much love❤

    • Maggie says:


      こんにちは、Marianne! わ〜北海道にいたんですね。日本の夏は暑いけれども北海道の夏は快適でしたか?

      そうですね、英語に訳すと一応も一旦もfor the time being, for nowという意味になることがありますが、
      私のレッスンの中の、多くの例文の”一応”は”一旦”に置き換えることはできません。特にsomehow の意味で使うものは「一旦」にすると不自然になります。

      Ex. A : 「英語が話せますか?」

      B : 「はい、一応、話せます。」

      = Yes, I can speak (English) (Not perfect — but to some extent.)



      Ex. 私は一応大学を出ている。

      = I graduated from a university.


      Ex. 私は一旦、大学を出てまた他の大学に入学した。






      I am studying German but I will also study Japanese for some extent.

      日本語の勉強は”not perfectly but roughly” の意味で使います。

  4. Elguido says:

    Dear sensei.
    I am awed by the dedication you show on this site. It must take time to answer all the questions you get. Therefore, I feel a little guilty asking you this question. But your teachings are so helpful and “real” that I hope you will have time (or interest) to answer this one.

    I’m trying to find the best way to learn reading kanji in the most practical way. I bought some Japanese graded reader books (level 0) and plan on learning the kanji as they show up. I’m ok with the kana.

    But I’m baffled by the reading of the kanji, provided by the furigana, in this sentence on the third book of the series:
    き むら け まい にち
    木 村 家 の 毎 日 (Kimurake’s daily)

    How can we choose wich reading is appropriate?!?
    They swing between Kun’yomi and On’yomi readings apparently in a random manner!!!

    木 ki (kun)
    村 mura (kun)
    家 ke (on)
    毎 mai (on)
    日 nichi (on)

    Thank you.
    P.S. I follow Victor’s VLOG every day. I love Japan. Fascinating country (and people).

    • Maggie says:


      Hello Elguido,

      Thank you for visiting our site.

      Choosing whether kun-reading or on-reading is a pain. There! I said that. :)

      There are a lot of exceptions but the basic rule is

      * when one kanji is used by itself, you tend to read it with kun-reading.
      明るい= あかるい= akarui (kun)
      暗い=くらい=kurai (kun)
      用いる=もちいる=mochiiru (kun)
      事=こと = koto (kun)

      *when you use a couple of kanji (as a compound word), you tend use on-reading

      明暗=めいあん= meian = (on)+ (on)
      用事= ようじ= youji = (on)+ (on)

      * However, as I said, there are a lot of exceptions. That, you just need to memorize them as a word.

      曲線=きょくせん=kyokusen= (on) + (kun)

      * People’s name/family name are really random but a lot of family names are read with kun-reading.

      木村 = ki mura = (kun)+ (kun)
      田中 = ta naka
      村田 = mura ta

      The name with on reading are considered to be relatively new in history.

      So your question
      木 村 家 の 毎 日

      木村 = kun + kun = because it’s a name
      “木村”家= ki mura ke = “(kun+ kun)” (on) * the last kanji is on-reading because it is a compound word
      毎日= is a compound word so you use on-reading.

      It is the best to learn kanji as a word. You will see a lot of different ways of reading and they could be pretty random as you said. But you will find certain patterns.
      Hope you enjoy learning Kanji. I promise it is going to be fun to be able to recognize all the kanji that you have learned.

      Happy to know you like Japan.
      I will tell Victor that you watch his video. He will like that.

      • Elguido says:

        どうもありがとうございました !!!

        Sigh… it’s gonna be rough to learn…

        • Maggie says:


          I know kanji looks overwhelming when you start learning but enjoy learning little by little. You will get there eventually. がんばって! 

  5. kd says:

    Hello Maggie-sensei. Thank you very much for your hard work, please don’t forget to send my regards to Yukari-san too.

    I have a question regarding たり, and no mater what source I consult I can’t understand how it is working here (so please, forgive me if this was already covered somewhere).
    The context is as follows: The writer of this is supposed to be a child (hence the childish style) filling up an entry in her dream diary. Inside her dreams, she sees these humanoid beings who chase her around. I believe this is how she perceived her first encounter with them.

    だれにも おしえて もらって ないけど
    なんにも されて いないけど。
    おおごえ だされて びっくり したり*
    だいじな なにかを とられたり*。

    そんなこと されて いないけど。
    だけど からだが こころが しってる。
    「あのひとにだけは つかまっちゃ だめ。」

    Thank you very much for reading, and sorry this post is kind of long/dense but I thought that it wouldn’t make much sense without knowing what’s happening.

    • Maggie says:


      Hello, kd!
      Thank YOU for visiting this site! Yukari says hello to you. :)

      たり is used when you list out things.

      to do A and B.

      to do things like A, B and etc.
      to do A and B and etc.


      The 5th line, the writer says
      Nobody has done such things to me but…

      and そんなこと (such things) refers to what mentioned in the line 3 and 4.

      A) 大声出されてびっくりする( getting scared by being screamed )
      B) だいじななにかをとられる ( having something important taken )

      Nobody had done things such as A, B and etc.

      FYI, check my たり lesson.

      • kd says:

        Oh, I see. I had a lot of problems understanding exactly who was performing those -tari actions. At first I thought the writer wasn’t talking in first person, and thus I got really confused over why she was using -tari and thought that maybe it was something different, but now I see I was really wrong.
        The translation is something like this, right?

        Even though nobody has told me anything (about it).
        Even though nobody has done anything to me.
        Things such as getting scared by being screamed,
        Or getting something important taken away from me.

        Such things haven’t happened.
        But my body…, my heart knows.
        “I must not be caught by that person”.

        Sounds a bit scary, but it does resemble the scene she’s describing and makes sense.

  6. David says:

    A quick question regarding は and には when used for possession:
    What is the difference between
    田中さんは 子供が います and 田中さんには 子供が います? Doesにはimply she has children but someone else doesn’t? Also, in possessive cases such as above, I have read that both います and
    あります are ok to use (even though ‘children’ is an animate case). Is that true?
    Thanks to anyone who can help.

    • Maggie says:


      They both mean the same but when you emphasize 田中さん by adding に more.

      Ex. 田中さんは子供ができた。<(emphasizing 田中さん more) 田中さんには子供ができた。
      Ex. 私はできません。<(stronger) 私にはできません。

      If you are talking about the existence of baby, animal, you use います.
      私には子供が一人います/家族がいます/父がいます。→(occationally you say) あります。instead of います(It is like “I own my family” to show your strong connection with them.)

  7. reid says:


    I want ask a question about 大人げない. I used it in this sentence: “いつも大人げない思いがあるんだ”

    and a friend corrected it to “いつも子供っぽいことを考えてるね”, and she said she wanted to explain 大人げない but it was difficult. So I was wondering if you could explain 大人げない to me.

    • Maggie says:

      I guess the sentence itself is not quite natural.

      思いがある is used to show one’s strong will/emotion.

      Ex. いつも誰かを助けたいという思いがある
      Ex. いつか有名になりたいという思いがある。
      Ex. 彼女には幸せになってもらいたいという思いがある。
      Ex. 彼にはどうにもできない悲しい思いがある

      So if you meant “the way you think” then 考え方 is better.

      The literal meaning of 大人げない is “lack of maturity” and it means childish/immature.
      子供っぽい also means “childish / immature” but 大人げない involves more negative feelings where you are supposed to be mature but you are not. (sometimes it has a connotation of being thoughtless) and 子供っぽい is just to describe something/someone is “childish”.

      So If you meant “your way of thinking is always childish” then 考え方がいつも子供っぽい might be better.

  8. The river puppy says:

    Hello! It’s me again! Thanks for answering my previous questions Maggie sensei! Your explanatios about the present tense/past tense conflict and how to use ni totte made a lot of sense.

    I have a question today though, (which is sort of related) Please help me as you always do! XD

    1. I noticed in the nara lesson that the sentence:
    “もし冬に東京に行くなら、コートを持っていったほうがいいよ” couldn’t be replaced with 行ったら, while in the tara lesson it was written: 歯が痛いんだったら歯医者にいったら?

    Which would be using no dattara which is said in the nara lesson to be able to replace it. (As it is itaindattara instead of itakattara)

    So my question is, can tara NOT be used for giving advice?
    but then again: マギー先生に優しくしたら (Isn’t this sort of giving a complaint/advice?)

    Is there anything wrong with itakattara? Sorry to ask you about conditionals again but this really is my problem area. It’s not that I can’t conjugate them easily, I can already conjugate the Ba form of negative, past, past negative and etc. I just don’t understand the difference and why sometimes some are preferred and sometimes some of them are incorrect/unnatural.

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Q:“もし冬に東京に行くなら、コートを持っていったほうがいいよ” couldn’t be replaced with 行ったら

      →No. もし冬に東京に行ったらコートを持っていったほうがいいよ? doesn’t sound natural.

      The main difference is,
      もし冬に東京に行くなら〜たほうがいいよ: giving an advice to a listener what to do before the trip.

      もし冬に東京に行ったら〜たほうがいいよ: giving an advice to a listener what to do after they get to Tokyo.

      Q:Can tara NOT be used for giving advice?

      →Yes, as I wrote in the lesson, you can use たら to make a suggestion

      Ex. もし冬に東京に行ったら向こうでコートを買った方がいいよ。
      = If you go to Tokyo in winter, you should get a coat there. (giving an advice to a listener what to do after they get to Tokyo.)

  9. anny says:

    In the case of phrases like this one: “If you wash my clothes, I’ll buy you ice cream.”
    what kind of conditional should be used and why the others are wrong?

    • Maggie says:


      Hello Anny,
      You can use たら or なら

      * 私の服を洗濯してくれたら、アイスクリームを買ってあげる。
      = Watashi no fuku wo sentaku shite kuretara, aisukuriimu wo katte ageru.

      * 私の服を洗濯してくれるなら、アイスクリームを買ってあげる。
      = Watashi no fuku wo sentaku shite kureru nara, aisukuriimu wo katte ageru.

      Difference of the nuance:
      the condition
      たら: when you complete the action (having washed the clothes)
      なら: If you wash my clothes (giving an idea of the condition)

  10. The river puppy says:

    Hello! It’s me again! Thanks for answering my previous questions 天人せんぱい and マギー先生! Congratulations on the 7th year anniversary! I guess I will be your first comment from the 7th year! XD

    Anyway, i’ve been trying to learn the difference between the (Nara, Tara and Ba-form) on how to say if. Actually I have been trying to learn their differences since 3 or so years ago when I first started. (Though I haven’t managed to succeed so far)

    I’ve thankfully managed to learn how (to) works thanks to your lesson Maggie sensei.) and I hope I can understand the rest now. Anyway…please tell me if the next sentences are not grammatically correct or unnatural.

    1. 人間にとって水を飲まないと死ぬ。(As for humans if they don’t drink water they die)

    2. この曲を聞くと元カレのことが思い出す。 (Whenever I listen to think song I think of my ex-boyfriend)

    3. もしマギー先生が猫だったら猫を追いかけなかったかもしれません。。(If Maggie sensei were a cat perhaps she wouldn’t have chased cats)—I think tara is appropriate here because Maggie is a dog and it would be hard to imagine her as a cat (Unlikely/impossible circumstance)

    4. コンビニを探したらあそこに。(If you’ve been looking for a convienience store there is one over there)

    5. コンビニならここにありません。(If you’re looking for a convience store there aren’t any here)

    6. 東京に行くなら会いましょう。(If you go to Tokyo let’s meet up)—implying the speaker is in Tokyo and the listener is not.

    7. 東京に行ったら東京スカイトリー見たの?(If you’ve BEEN to Tokyo, did you see the Tokyo Sky Tree?)

    I think I have come to understand that Tara is used for (If) and generally things that are either hard to imagine or things relating to the past, whereas Nara is forward looking and is not used for abnormal circumstances that much (Where tara would be used) Nara can also be used along with particles (あなたになら何でもしてあげる。) あなたに being (for you) while you can’t do that with Tara. (Is this sort of correct?)

    9. But would this be correct?: コンビニを探すならあそこに。

    10. もし分からなかったらマギー先生に聞いたら? (Can tara be used to give suggestions in this way?)

    It is still kinda confusing but thanks for reading. I’m sorry if there are too many questions. I just really need to know because (If) is really difficult for me.

    Thanks in advance! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hi The river puppy,
      Thank you for your warm message for our anniversary!


      1. 人間にとって水を飲まないと死ぬ。

      →人 (or 人間)は水を飲まないと死ぬ。

      2. この曲を聞くと元カレのことが思い出す。 (Whenever I listen to think song I think of my ex-boyfriend)

      3. もしマギー先生が猫だったら猫を追いかけなかったかもしれません。

      →Good! Grammatically correct but I think I would have chased a cat anyway. :P

      4. コンビニを探したらあそこに。(If you’ve been looking for a convienience store there is one over there)

      5. コンビニならここにありません。(If you’re looking for a convience store there aren’t any here)

      6. 東京に行くなら会いましょう。(If you go to Tokyo let’s meet up)—implying the speaker is in Tokyo and the listener is not.

      →If the speaker is in Tokyo, you should say 東京に来るなら会いましょう。
      7. 東京に行ったら東京スカイトリー見たの?(If you’ve BEEN to Tokyo, did you see the Tokyo Sky Tree?)

      →OK, it is a bit conversational but you can say 東京に行ったのなら、東京スカイツリーを見た?

      9. But would this be correct?: コンビニを探すならあそこに。→As I said 4. コンビニを探しているなら/コンビニなら
      10. もし分からなかったらマギー先生に聞いたら? (Can tara be used to give suggestions in this way?)

      →There are two たら but you can say that.

      • The river puppy says:

        Hello! It’s me again! Thanks for answering my questions Maggie sensei! I do have some things to ask about it though.

        (My specific questions relating to your replies):

        1. Why can’t にとって be used? Is it unnatural?

        2. Sorry, that was a really stupid mistake!

        6. Right. That makes sense.

        5&7. Wait? So it’s just better to pick Nara everytime? I don’t understand. Can’t Tara be used as a conditional as well? I am beginning to think I haven’t managed to understand the difference at all…again. But at least it seems I know how to use (to) now.

        Hmmm…it seems like I really don’t understand the difference. Also, how does Ba fit into this. Actually don’t tell me please. I’m already super confused with just Nara and Tara…

        Sorry for asking the same questions again. (Looking back at the old questions I asked I can see that i’ve asked you questions about conditionals before) Anyway, thanks in advance! XD

        • Maggie says:

          Conditional form is difficult. Especially the difference between なら・たら・ば.

          1. Why can’t にとって be used? Is it unnatural?

          Yes it is unnatural. The main verb of your sentence is 死ぬ and you needs a subject.
          人間にとって= means “for human/ for people” so 人間 can’t be a subject.

          You can say” 人間にとって水は欠かせないものだ。
          = Water is something indispensable for people.
          (The subject is water)

          Q; 5&7. Wait? So it’s just better to pick Nara everytime? Can’t Tara be used as a conditional as well?

          1) I didn’t correct No.5. It was perfect.
          2) As for 7), Yes, you can use たら as conditional

          東京に行ったら〜 (When you go to Tokyo)
          Ex. 東京に行ったら東京スカイツリーを見に行ってください。
          = If / When you go to Tokyo, please go see Tokyo Sky Tree.

          The problem of your sentence was
          東京に行ったら = When/ If you go to Tokyo ( talking about future )
          見たの?= Did you see? (talking about past)

  11. 8月10日 (はちがつとうか) August 10th.
    It’s our 7th anniversary today.
    Thank you for all your support! boucingheart!

    • 天人 says:

      おめでとう !shortcake! おめでとう
      Thank you Maggie for this wonderful 7 years.
      Without any seed of doubt, You are the best 先生 in the world.
      By combining learning and fun you showed us that Japanese isn’t that much difficult and that this combination gives the best results.

      これからも私たちの日本語を支え続けてください! boucingheart!

      • @天人

        Thank YOU for your nice and warm message.
        Your Japanese is already AMAZING, you keep coming here and help people.
        We are very grateful to have you here.
        :maggie-small: boucingheart!

  12. The river puppy says:

    Hi Maggie sensei! It’s me again! I just wanted to ask a quick question today. Please help me as you always do!

    1. What is the difference between なんとなく and なんとか?
    なんとなく is supposed to mean: somehow or other/ for some reason or another
    なんとか is supposed to mean: somehow or other

    How would they be used differently and what are their nuances. Or are they interchangable? (I personally don’t think so because I once read that nantonaku is something of a special response which means “Not any particular”

    Like if somebody asked “Why do you love dogs?” nantonaku would mean “No particular reason”. (Though what I read could be incorrect)

    Please help me as you always do!
    Thanks in advance Maggie sensei!

    • 天人 says:

      Hello river puppy!
      Here’s the explanation between 何とか and 何となく.

      ★ 何とか ★
      1. なんとか implies that you just run out of certain methods / ways / means / techniques in order to do / achieve something. And now you have to do this “SOMETHING” in order to achieve it.
      EX) 今のうちに何とかしないと大変だ! (If we don’t do something right now, then we are gonna be in big trouble!).

      2. なんとか implies also the same as どうにか or かろうじて which means: barely, hardly(完全/十分とはいえない).
      EX) 何とかバスに間に合あった。(Barely catch the bus; a few seconds later and the bus would have left)

      3. Used when the matters are uncertain / unknown.
      EX) 何とかという人から電話がかかってきた。(Mr. thingy-ma-bob called), なんとか言いなさい! (Say SOMETHING!), なんとかして!(Do SOMETHING!)

      ★ 何となく ★
      1. Used when you don’t know the reason / purpose / intention / source of something / if you are not sure about something (like feelings)
      何となく分かる。 (Get a sense of something / understand something in some way)
      私は何となく…聞いたことがあるような気がする。 (It feels like I have heard … before)
      何となく愛子ちゃんのことを好きになれないけど。 (For some reason I have hard feelings toward Aiko… / I don’t know why, but I have hard feelings toward Aiko…)


      • Maggie says:


        Thank you 天人 for helping The river puppy!! :)

      • The river puppy says:

        Hello 天人せんぱい! Thanks for answering my question. Your answer was very detailed! But I have a question about something I read online. This next portion of text is the reason why I had the question the the first place:

        “聞く所によると、スペイン人はイタリア人と会話しても何となく通じるそうで、フランス語はさす がに発音が違いすぎるので分からないと言うものの、読むことは何とかできるそうです。”

        I think the first part means, “From listening standpoint when Spanish and Italians converse they can SOMEHOW understand each other,—”

        Which makes sense to me after you explained how nantonaku works but what does the rest mean? I think it goes on to say this: “Of course French pronounciations (Of French) sound very different and therefore cannot be understood (By Italians and Spanish) but for SOMETHING they seem to be able to read French.

        I don’t think something makes sense here (But i’m too dum to figure out what fits!) and also, in this case it doesn’t mean something and it means SOMEHOW as well, then wouldn’t it have the same meaning as nantonaku?

        Also, what does the “と言うものの” part mean exactly? Could the two (no)s be a typo or is this nominalization (BUT why would there be any nominalization)?

        I know i’ve already asked you a lot of questions already but could you please also tell me what
        ご参考までに means?

        (I don’t think it means: Until a good consideration)

        Thanks in advance! XD

        • 天人 says:

          => They cannot understand フランス語 because the pronunciation differs too much, but somehow – apparently – they are able to read in French.
          As you can see the are two “somehow” with the same meaning. The first one (なんとなく) refers to an abstract state (通じること [understanding]) and the second one (なんとか) to an action (読むこと [reading].

          => と(は)言うものの is a fix pattern (という+ものの) used in contrast sentences; it means the same as: …ではあるが、その反面… or そうは言っても / とは言いながら…

          => “I know i’ve already asked you a lot of questions”  Qui rogat, non errat :)

          => ご参考までに means normally “for your information”. But – I don’t know why – I use it in the meaning of: “I hope the answer / information I gave to you was helpful enough” (以上の情報をご参考までなれば幸いざんす). Maggie, correct me, if I’m wrong.

          • Maggie says:


            Great job, 天人先輩!

            Yes, ご参考までに・ご参考まで means “for your information”

            You usually use it,

            * ご参考までに+ and give an information.

            or after giving an information, you concludes

            * 以上、ご参考になれば幸(さいわ)いです。
            or less formal

            but you sometimes just say, 以上、ご参考までに・ご参考まで
            omitting the rest. (Therefore if you are writing to someone superior in business, you should stick to * form. But in this comment section, there is no problem. :) )

            ざんす: Only when you are joking. :)

          • 天人 says:

            Hello Maggie! Thank you for your answer.
            Didn’t know that ざんす is used jokingly. It’s 丁寧語 of だ / である, so I thought…
            Confirm please if ご参考までに has the meaning of “I hope the answer / information I gave to you was helpful enough” or does it only mean “for your information”. This just “for your information” doesn’t sound quite polite…

          • Maggie says:


            ご参考までに means just “For your information. It is a short way of saying
            ご参考になれば幸いです。・嬉しいです means “I hope this answer/information will be helpful. / I would be happy if this serves you.”
            But don’t worry. You don’t sound impolite at all.
            You have been giving all the information and conclude 参考までに, so it is


            ご参考までに means just “For your information. It is a short way of saying
            ご参考になれば幸いです。・嬉しいです means “I hope this answer/information will be helpful. / I would be happy if this serves you.”
            But don’t worry. You don’t sound impolite at all.
            You have been giving all the information and conclude 参考までに, so it is

            As for ざんす, you only hear/see is when you make fun of typical a snob rich people character.
            Also it is known as a famous line from a character, IYAMI in animation “Osomatsukun”
            So you don’t use it in a formal speech. Just when you write in a jokingly way.

  13. 天人 says:

    Hello, Maggie!
    How are you doing? I hope you are fine ^ ^

    Maggie, could you explain me the meaning and usage of よくしたもの(だ/で) and よく言ったもの(だ/で)?
    I think I got the general idea of this interesting pattern, but it doesn’t hurt to ask you for some further information, because you are the source of knowledge ^ ^

    よろしくお願いクポ! !ohisama!

    • Maggie says:


      Hello, 天人!
      I’m good. How about you?

      よく言ったものだ。/ で
      You use the expressions with with a cliché or old sayings.

      Ex. “ ~ “ とはよく言ったものだ。
      The saying/quote ” ~ “ really hits the nail on the head.

      「恋は盲目 *love is blind!” 」とはよく言ったものだ。
      = The saying “Love is blind” really hits the nail on the head.

      When you express more you continue with 言ったもので

      「恋は盲目 」とはよく言ったもので、人は誰かを好きになるとその人のことしか考えられなくなる。
      = The saying “Love is blind” really hits the nail on the head because when we fall in love with someone, we can’t think of anything else.

      Not sure about よくしたものだ/で one. I don’t think you are asking the pattern of “S used to do something”
      Can you give me an example?

      • 天人 says:

        I’m fine, today the temperature dropped under 30度 so it’s going to be a lovely day.

        Well, this pattern can also be translated into “S used to do something” depending on context, but you are right, here it’s not the case.
        According my book:

        I had woken up and shortly after that I had a little enlightenment regarding this pattern.
        I think it implies a wise state of design / creation / being => 実に巧妙に作られている (1-3) or that someone is just lucky (4).

        1. 夫婦とはよくしたもので、お互いに欠点を補いあっている組み合わせが多い。
        2. よくしたもので、貧乏がかえって幸せなこともある。
        3. 世の中はよくしたもので、楽あれば苦ありさ。
        4. よくしたものだね。呼びに行こうと思っていたら、彼の方から来た。

        • Maggie says:


          I’m happy to hear you are having a lovely weather there.
          It’s steaming hot here in Japan.

          Ah, OK. That よくしたもの
          It is an idiomatic expression. We also say よく出来たものだ/うまく出来ているものだ。
          And yes, your enlightenment is correct.
          I should take a nap,too. :)

  14. David says:

    Thank you for your website.
    Do 食べずに, 食べないで and 食べないまま mean the same thing?
    In other words, are ずに and ないで and まま interchangeable in most cases?
    I am particularly interested in まま。


    • 天人 says:

      Hmmm, my 語感 tells me that ~まま focuses more on the state itself and ~ずに on the action.
      What do you think, Maggie?

    • Maggie says:

      @David and 天人

      Basically they mean the same. (without eating)
      食べずに and 食べないで are interchangeable.


      Good job 天人さん!
      食べないまま: As 天人さん said, まま focuses on the state of not eating and ないで・ずに focuses on the action itself.

  15. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! I know it’s been awhile. First of all:

    お帰りなさい!いい夏休みを過ごしましたか?—Sorry if this is a little belated

    I also have a question to ask if you don’t mind. Recently, I have been trying to read an article and everything made sense until a certain part, which I basically translated into nonsense.


    My Translation: For that reason, properly speaking, the English learning that is based on this matter must, sadly, be carried out, Why does an English learning of Japan that seems to not acknowledge the existence of such a truth continue to be carried out.

    It seems to be nonsense huh? I’m really no good at this. Please help maggie sensei, I have no idea what it means.

    This is the first part of the article in case context is needed:

    です。 ところが、日本語と英語の違いは非常に大きいため、日本人が英語を学習するにはかなり苦労しま す。例えば、アメリカのある公的機関は、アメリカ人にとって世界で一番難しい言語は日本語だと 言っています。そのため本来ならこの事を踏まえた

    Please help me as you always do Maggie sensei!

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hi the river puppy.

      Maybe the part, 本来ならこの事を踏まえた英語学習が行われなければならないのに can be changed.
      I don’t do the translation here but will help you give you some idea.
      “Though they* are supposed to study English based on this, ~~”

      * can be “we” if the writer is Japanese.

      • The river puppy says:

        Hi Maggie sensei! It’s me again! Thanks for answering my question! It didn’t make any sense before but now that you said this one thing it suddenly makes complete sense (Kinda like when you explained a confusing sentence about Apple) You are a really amazing teacher to be able to answer my wordy question so simply and effectively! XD I hope my Japanese will be as good as yours someday.

        Anyway, it makes sense to me now. Thanks for all the help!

  16. レーナ says:


    「先」と「手前」と「ちか」と「となり」の違いはナンですか???実はよく分かりません  !sleepy!

    • Maggie says:

      先 ahead of someone/somewhere
      手前 right before something. Ex. 信号(しんごう)の手前= right before the traffic signal
      ちか→I think it’s a typo. You meant 近く(ちかく)? If so, “near something/someone/ close to something/someone”
      となり= right next to something/someone, next door

  17. ivan says:

    i have more questions and doubts:

    1- how to use or when to use よし、君ならできる and まさか。
    2- what`s the difference between ことにする and 決める。
    3- how do i know when the pronounce is あと or ご for 後? and when the pronounce is ちゅう or じゅう for 中?
    4- there is a てform for です/だ? if yes, can you give an example?

    • Maggie says:


      I can handle one or two questions at a time. Will try to answer briefly :)
      1. よし君ならできる = the speaker is superior to the listener. Like a teacher, instructor would say this kind of quote.
      I believe you can do it. / Now you are ready

      まさか= No way!/ It can’t be true. (When you can’t believe what you just heard/saw”)

      2. ことにする to make a decision on the action from now on.
      決める can be used for actions, matters, rules.

      There are exceptions but usually
      noun の後(あと)(食事の後(あと)・授業の後(じゅぎょうのあと))

      後(ご)is used in a compound word.

      4. You use Verb+て form with ます
      You use だ・です after noun or na-adjective.
      Did you see te-form + だ・です?

      • ivan says:

        About the だ and です i asked for curiosity and ことにする and 決める are interchangeable?

        • Maggie says:

          Not quite.
          Verb + ことにする
          noun + に/を+ 決める

          Ex. A-1) 明日、出発することにします。= I think I am going to leave tomorrow.
          Ex. A-2) もう、彼とは会わないことにした。= I decided not to see him anymore.

          時間を決める = to set the time
          新しい規則を決める= to set the new rules.
          When it is used with a verb, you have to nominalize the verb.
          B-1) もう彼とは会わないことに決めた。
          B-2) 明日、出発することに決めた。

          The translation is the same but ことにする・した focusing on what the speaker is(not) going to do from now, 決めた focuses on the decision itself.

          There are more usages of ことにする but there is no space here. Will make a lesson for you sometime.

  18. Danny G says:

    Hello :)

    I wanted to know what the volitional form plus just plain か is used for? Such as 今朝も 何を書こうかと考えています。 

    Any help would be appreciated.

    • 天人 says:

      Hello Danny G,

      今朝も何を書こうかと考えています。(I’m thinking also this morning what should I write.)
      (よ)う implies the speakers will.
      か indicates uncertainty.

      This pattern is used when you (or someone) want(s) to do something but there are certain uncertainties regarding this action itself. In this case the speaker wants to write something, but he doesn’t know what.
      EX) あのとき、どうしようかなぁって思っていたんだ。 (That time I was thinking what should I do.)


  19. Maggie says:

    明日(あした)、7月13日(しちがつ じゅうさんにち)から夏休(なつやす)みをいただきます。みなさんのコメントには22日(にじゅうににち)までお返事(へんじ)できません。みんなも楽(たの)しい夏(なつ)を過(す)ごしてください。

    Hi everyone! :maggie-small:
    I will take a summer break from tomorrow, July 13th.
    I won’t be able to answer your comments until July 22nd.
    Hope you all have a great summer! boucingheart! !onpu!

  20. 天人 says:

    Hello Maggie!
    I hope you are doing well :)
    I brought with me a few questions (as always ^o^).

    1. In the lesson about ~めく there’s a sentence which I’m not sure I understand it completely correct.

    いわくありげな文字 ==> “something is written which seems to have a meaning / sense” (I imagine a 1000-year old text which is barely readable, but has a meaning). How would you translate this part?

    2. I found an interesting pattern ~てたまる(もん)か and I wonder about the difference (meaning / nuance) between 動詞+る形+ものか and 動詞+て形+たまる(もん)か
    EX あんな奴に馬鹿にされてたまるもんか VS あんな奴に馬鹿にされるもんか!

    3. I found an interesting construction: AもAなら、BもB but there’s one sentence that I don’t understand entirely:

    こんな非常識極まりない = such an extremely thoughtlessness / absurd
    する方もする方なら、させる方もさせる方だ => ??? (;____;)

    よろしくお願いします、ブヒィィィィ! :maggie-small:

    • Maggie says:


      Hi 天人さん

      1. Besides “to have a meaning” いわくありげ suggest that there could be some story behind it.
      I think いわくありげ in the example sentence modifies 石碑 not 文字 because 文字 already has a meaning.

      an engraved stone monument (or a tombstone) which may have some story (history).


      They both has もんか and express one’s strong will not to let someone do something to you.
      But I think たまるもんか sounds stronger.
      堪まる=tamaru = to put up with
      堪らない=tamaranai= can not stand / can’t control your feelings./ one’s extreme feelings

      3. OK, let me break it down.

      The speaker is talking about two people.

      A: こんな非常識極まりないことをする人  A person who does such an extremely thoughtless/rude/absurd thing
      B : こんな非常識極まりないことをさせる人 a person who let someone does such an ~~~

      • 天人 says:

        Dear Maggie,
        thanks to you learning Japanese gives me more and more fun & satisfaction, because day by day with your help I feel like I’m getting better with my Japanese.
        I wish I could give you a biiiig hug for all what you have done for me…
        Thank you for the answers and please enjoy your 夏休み.

        • Maggie says:


          Thank YOU for always helping people here while I am gone.
          I just came back from my 夏休み today.
          Learning language is like an endless journey but your Japanese is just amazing!

  21. Mike says:

    Hi Maggi sensei,

    I just found your site, and it is so wonderful! Thank you so much for contributing so much to the Japanese language learning community!

    I have a martial arts text book that I’m reading through and I came across what I think is a particle but I’m not sure. The word/particle in question is のと、I am unable to figure out how it used or what it actually means. I’m really hoping you can help. I have 3 examples below from my text book.




    Thank You,

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Mike,
      Welcome to my site!
      OK の is used to nominalize a verb.

      Ex. 彼は食べるのがすきです。
      = Kare wa taberu no ga suki desu.
      (が= ga is a subject marker)

      Ex. 漢字を勉強するのは難しい。
      = Kanji wo benkyou suru nowa muzukashii.
      = Studying Kanji is difficult.
      (は= wa is another subject marker)

      Ex. 花に水をやるのを忘れた。
      = Hana ni mizu wo yaru no wo waasureta.
      = I forgot giving water to flowers.
      (を (o) is an object marker)

      So depending on the context, の (=no) is used with another particle.

      In your example sentences, it is used with a particle と (=to) which means “and”
      or ~のと(同時に)  (at the same time) as doing something

  22. マイケル says:

    Dear Maggie Sensei,

    I am a karateka and I am conducting research on the term osu 押忍! I noticed you have three variations of osu on your aisatsu page:挨拶-あいさつaisatsu-how-to-greet-in-japanese/

    おっす!( = ossu)
    うっす!( = ussu)
    ういっす!( = uissu)

    I know the term osu / ossu more than likely was derived as a shortened version of ohayou gozaimasu (お)はようございま(す) from officers in the Dai-Nippon Teikoku Kaigun 大日本帝国海軍.

    I’m curious as to the history and usage of ussu and uissu. When did they come about and when would someone use these terms compared to using ossu?

    Thank you very much for your time.


    • Maggie says:


      As you said おっす is an abbreviation form of おはようございます。 It has been used for a long time.
      I can’t recall since when we’ve started to hear/use or who started to use them but there has been the following trends
      1) We tend to abbreviate words/phrases
      2) Young men tend to add っす instead of saying ます 
      3) We tend to stretch the sounds Ex. ウイーッス

      So basically it is easy to create new types of greetings.

      Ex. こんにちは→ちわっす→ちわーっす
      Ex. おはよう→おはよっす

  23. 天人 says:

    Hello again! !onpu!
    Maggie, I need your help to verify the difference between ~終わる and ~終える.
    Using a few Japanese web sites I’ve tried to figure it out by myself (though it took me 2 hours…. >. implies that the speaker ate his sushi as a normal course of things. He was hungry, ate his sushi and now he’s full.
    すしを食べ終えた => implies that the speaker had to do some extra actions (it wasn’t just a normal course of things) to finish his sushi. It might imply he did some efforts (for example although he was full he forced himself to eat everything what was on his plate) or he was in hurry and had to finished eating faster then normal, because his bus leaves soon.




    • Maggie says:


      Hello again,

      Yes, your interpretation is right.
      〜を食べ終えた = The speaker managed to finish eating ~ .
      〜を食べ終わった= The speaker finished eating ~
      So V+終えた implies the speaker goes through some actions.

  24. Shiani says:

    今度に文法的な質問です。「と」particleの元は「とも {友達言葉の中にみたい}」ですか。


    !greenapple!  !Anapple! !Anapple!

    • Maggie says:


      友達言葉の中にみたい →I am sorry. I don’t understand what you meant.
      と means “and/with/then.etc.” とも (also).
      Youtube : He says “一回は一回です。” = One time is one time. (Emphasizing what you promised before.) 「目には目を」is an old saying and different form this usage.

      • Shiani says:

        Ohhh I understand now! Thank you very much!
        For the first sentence, I was trying to say this time I had a grammatical question, but I didn’t check the kanji, sorry about that.
        As for と I was wondering that, since that particle can be used to say ‘together with’ i.e. 「私は、彼と来た。」then, like how in English many words have roots, affixes, suffixes, etc. if when using と to mean ‘together with’, if it was just a version of 「とも」 that became a particle long ago.
        ビデオに本当ありがとございます。三週間から、その意味を考えていましたの。 !happyface!

  25. ivan says:

    I have some questions:

    1- i know that うん/ううん are the casual versions of はい/いいえ, but there are situations where a person must say はい or いいえ even in casual talk?

    2- what verb is better to say “to hug”: 抱擁する or 抱く?

    3- what is the difference between:どうしよう(かな), どうすればいい and どうしたらいい?

    4- is this phrase correct? 最近僕はたくさん勉強してるが, 疲れないよ i am not sure if が was the best choice and if the comma was necessary.

    • Maggie says:


      Hello ivan,

      1. There is no specific situation that people must say はい・いいえ in casual situation but when you talk to someone sarcastically or you want to emphasize “yes/no”, you tend to speak politely on purpose.

      2. We say ハグする in modern Japanese.

      3. どうしようかな talking to yourself.
      どうすればいい・どうしたらいい the same meaning. Asking an opinion (or talking to yourself.)

      4. It is grammatically correct. But as you noticed, が is a bit too formal in this sentence.
      Since you use 僕, you can stick to casual speech. 勉強しているけれど(けど)

      Hope that helps.

  26. Guy Marchand says:

    Hello from Canada Maggie sensei.

    I need to know to whom the “husband” belongs to (her friend or herself) in that phrase from Twitter:
    (I understand it’s about a lady who meets friends for her birthday):

    I asked around and apparently this phrase is peculiarly written…

    Thank you very much.

    • Maggie says:

      @Guy Marchand

      Hello Guy Marchand

      You are supposed to refer to someone else’s husgand as 旦那様 not yours. However some people use さん/様 to your own family member jokingly. That is why it is hard to tell whose huband he is.
      But If the speaker is visiting her friend’s house, he must be her friend’s husband.

      What I don’t understand cleary is the last part, お友達ちゃん飲んでた。It looks like an unfinished sentence.

  27. obakasan000 says:

    Good day dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much.
    My question for today is based on these sentences.


    I was 20 minutes late,
    but I was still able to see it(^o^)/*
    For starters, the atmosphere of the club was overwhelming

    I am having trouble trying to understand this phrase: 雰囲気に圧倒

    雰囲気 – atmosphere
    圧倒 – overpower, overwhelm.

    Is there something omitted after 圧倒?
    Thank you so much in advance, dear Maggie sensei.

    • Maggie says:


      Hello Orikousan!

      Yes, されました is omitted after 圧倒
      圧倒されました。= I was overwhelmed.

      You often finished the sentence like that

      Ex. 〜にびっくり(しました)I was surprised at ~
      Ex. 〜に感動(しました)I was impressed with ~
      Ex. 〜に同感(しました)I agree ~ ,etc.

      • obakasan000 says:

        Good day dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much.

        My question for today is about this sentence.
        I would like to ask if I got this right?


        There is a comma after 全然, so it is for 見れませんでした and not for 動かず.

        Though there is no「に」 after 「ず」, this still means, “without doing verb”.
        So if I will translate it literally, It would be like this:

        I could not see the e-mail at all, without the monitor turning on.
        Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

        • Maggie says:


          Hi! I just rescued your messages from Spam file. (You sent me the same messages three times so I deleted the other ones.)
          That 全然 modifies 動かず. The punctuation is tricky. It should be 全然動かず、メールが見れませんでした。
          The monitor got freezed (= didn’t react at all) and couldn’t see the emails.
          If 全然 modifies 見れませんでした it should be 画面が動かず、全然メールが見れませんでした。

          • obakasan000 says:

            Good day dear Maggie Sensei. Advance Happy Anniversary too.
            My question for today are:

            Just like this year, I reached/celebrated my birthday safely.
            My 20th birthday is just around the corner (1 year to go)

            I am just confused with もう here. Which do you think is more appropriate?

            a. [Soon], the age when I should not call my self a child is coming
            b. It is the age when I should [no longer] call my self a child.

            Would this mean,

            a. things like A and B are [also] cute
            b. It should be も+も but, や is used to sound softer?
            Thank you so much in advance, dear Maggie sensei.

          • Maggie says:


            Wow! I didn’t expect anybody to remember the anniversary. Thank you! I’m really surprised!

            1. That もう means “(not ~ )anymore”

            It is not the age that I can consider myself as a child anymore.

            2. AやBもかわいい。= A and B and maybe other things are cute.
            AもBもかわいい = A and also B are cute.

  28. Shiro-san says:

    I have some doubts…
    I read this from OreImo light novel:
    I didn’t understand some parts.
    For example> 茶髪にピアス= Piercing Brown Hair? But Kirino doesn’t have a Spiked Hair or something like that. So I don’t get it.
    身内の俺が言うのもなんだが= “What I say of relatives as well but…” Did I understand this part right?
    What’s かたり and きたもんだ in this context?
    Help me, 先生!

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Shiro-san

      茶髪にピアス ~(の中学生)
      junior high school student with brown hair and pierced ears.
      (FYI usually a lot of schools banned junior high school students to dye their hair and have their ears pierced in Japan.)
      身内の俺が言うのもなんだが= (I don’t mean to brag as her (relatives, family, members of the same group) This is an expression when you say good things about your family or members.
      Usually it is hard to compliment your own family members or someone who belongs to your group.

      かたり = Is she deceiving people? If so かたり there means “a swindler”
      ~きたもんだ is to show your surprising, admiring feelings.
      (interesting enough) She is a beautiful swindler.

  29. Shiani says:

    こんばんは、マギ一先生!今日は、三質問があります、申しそれがいいです。先ず、見るがみってより見てだというのです。どうしてのですか。見るは、一段verbだから、「る」が「って」になるの方がべきではありませんか。ところで、verb past-tenseりの語法は、future-tense をありますか。私は、「verb current-tenseだったり」だと思いますでも、悪い答えでしょう。やっと、verb 「いる」は、「て」の形をありますか。すべて先生の凄い答えで、ありがとございます! !Anapple! !greenapple!  !Anapple!

    In English just in case…
    Good evening, Maggie Sensei! Today I have 3 questions, if that’s okay with you. First, みる[‘s て-form] is みて instead of みって. Why? That verb is an いちだん verb, so shouldn’t る become って? 「例えば、私はビデオをみっています。 vs わたしはビデオをみています。」 Also, about the grammar of verb past-tense り, does it have a future tense? I thought that might work out like verb future-tense だったり, 「例えば、明日こそ、必ず犬と散歩するだったり、洗濯するだったり、家を綺麗するなあ!」 but that’s probably wrong. Finally, about the verb いて, does it have a て form? 「例えば、「いています」 would mean [existing]。」Thank you so much for all your awesome answers!

    • Maggie says:



      1) te-form of 見る is 見て

      The easiest way to remember what verbs takes って is to make masu form first.

      And the following three takes って

      Ex. ~り(ます) Ex. 帰(かえ)ります。→帰って
      Ex. ~ち (ます)Ex. 待(ま)ちます→待って
      Ex. ~ い(ます)Ex. 買(か)います→買って

      2) You can use たり when you talk about future as follows.

      Ex. 明日は犬と散歩をしたり洗濯をしたりして過ごします。

      3) いています is strange. You just say います

      But you use
      Verb ています= is doing something / has done something

      • Shiani says:

        1. ああ、そう。「見るが五段です」と思いましたが、一段です。 :oops:
        2. そっか、ありがと!!
        3. わかりました。

        ありがとございます!!! !greenapple! 

  30. Gallus says:

    Hello, I heard a sentence watching something and was wondering a few things about it? I tried translating it myself but I wonder if I’m right and a few things. Context is around a soldier explaining orders to one of the commanders. This was going by my hearing so the sentence may sound weird. Sorry

    命令拒否はできないんじゃないんですか? 正論なんてことは役に立たないことは、さすがに知ってますよね。

    Basically my translation was ” You can’t refuse orders can you not? You know that kind of sound reasoning isn’t helpful to you right?”

    My questions were that I feel like a particle should be between 命令 and 拒否 Also why is ことは after なんて here?

    Would be helpful if you were able to explain these to me as I don’t know. Or even if I translated it right.

    Thanks in advance :)

  31. Danny G says:

    Hello :)

    I’ve seen a couple of words/particles used to convey the meaning of “at least” in Japanese and I wanted to know when I could use each of them. It’s a topic that has confused me for a looong time.


    Thanks in advance. Whenever you have time

    • Maggie says:

      @Danny G

      Hi Danny G!
      There are cases that you can use them both.

      少なくとも is used when you are talking about the minimum number/price/actions, etc.

      Ex. 彼は少なくとも年収は2000万円はあるはずだ。
      = He must earn at least 20 million yen a hear.

      Ex. このレッスンを作るには少なくとも1週間はかかる。
      = It will take at least one week to make this lesson.

      せめて involves more emotion and you use it when you expect someone (or even yourself) to do something to fill your minimum satisfaction.

      Ex. せめてこのレッスンだけは読んでください。
      = Please read at least this lesson.

      ぐらい・くらいは can be accompanied to both of them

      EX. せめて、返事ぐらいしてよ。
      = You could at least reply to me.

  32. Shiro-san says:

    I have a question.
    How to say “Call someone by something”?
    For example:
    “Call me Tanaka!”
    “She calls him Mark.”
    “He calls she Angeline.”

  33. Marianne says:

    Dear Maggie Sensei,
    How would you say “come before” or “put before” in Japanese? When something takes priority over something else.
    Ex. Nothing comes before my family.
    Ex. He puts his work before his private life.

    • Maggie says:


      Hello Marianne!
      come before/put before: You say 〜を優先(ゆうせん)させる(to prioritize) / 〜が(のほうが)大切 (~ is more important than ~ ) in Japanese.

      Ex. Nothing comes before my family. 家族が一番大切大切だ/ 何よりも家族を優先させる
      Ex. He puts his work before his private life. 彼は私生活より仕事を優先させる。・彼にとって私生活より仕事の方が大切だ。

  34. The river puppy says:

    Hi Maggie sensei! It’s me again. I just have a really quick question today. Please help me out as you always do! XD

    1. What is the difference between 解明 and 解説? I think they both stem from 説明 but that doesn’t seem to make the difference clearer. Are they interchangeble or is there/are there some slight differences?

    2. Also, I know you are busy but please add me to the list of people requesting a (Ba) lesson. Conditionals have been confusing me since I first started learning Japanese and after so many years I am more confused than ever.

    3. Also, if possible, could you also make a lesson explaining the differences between nara and tara (I know you put in a section regarding differences in you Nara lesson but nevertheless I am still very confused) I read 天人’s comment in the comments section about the differences as well but once again I can’t understand it at all. :(

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hi The river puppy!

      1. 解明 is to clarify or solve some difficult problem or mysteries or investigate what happened.
      解説 is to explain or interpret

      2. It is already on the list.
      3. At this point I am not planning to make another lesson on nara and tara to compare. As you can see the length of each lessons, I have to make another long long lessons… But when I have more time, I will add more inf on one of the lessons.
      I am sorry….

      • The river puppy says:

        Hi Maggie sensei! It’s me again! Thanks for answering my questions! (It still is kinda confusing because the difference is very slight and very similar to 説明) but anyway thanks for answering!

        Also, there is no need to apologise. I know you work very hard on the lessons. You are a really great teacher. Because of your teachings I can actually watch Japanese movies now! (Though I don’t understand everything, there have been a lot of things that made sense and it was so great when I knew what they were saying!) I have you to thank for all of that.

        But as usual, since I have such horrid internet connection, I don’t want to waste any oppourtunities (It just became good but probably only temporarily) so I have two questions today. Please answer them! XD

        1. What is the difference between 行方 and 居場所? I would think that the first is “Whereabouts” while the other is where you are (But then isn’t that the same?)

        2. Is there a difference in using yori for comparisons and using (no hou ga +yori)? Basically, does adding the no hou emphasize more or something? Or is it simply choice?

        Also, I just want to thank you again. You are a really wonderful teacher. The things I can read and understand in Japanese right now aren’t very much but it would all have been impossible three years ago and I have you to thank for all of that. (Also, your recommendation of Tae Kim as a good Japanese teacher was great too. Thanks a lot for that)

        Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD (And for all the help you’ve given me until now!)

        • Maggie says:

          @The river puppy

          Hi The river puppy!


          Will give you some of the words which you use with

          * 事件(incident)・事故(accident) ・秘密(secrets) ・不思議な現象 (mysterious phenomenon) を解明する
          = investigate / find out (the secret) / clarify

          *ニュース (news) / 野球 (baseball ) /作品 を解説する
          = comment on news/baseball game / explain all the details of an artwork for someone

          Let’s pick one word
          事故の解明 = to try to find out why the accident happened / try to solve the accident.
          事故の解説 = to comment / explain all the details of the accident / how the accident happened.

          I am happy to hear you can watch J-movies. Good for you.

          2) 行方 居場所

          行方 where someone/something is

          When you don’t know where someone is, you can use both 行方・居場所

          彼の行方が分からない。= I don’t know where he is. (You can replace with 居場所)
          船の行方が分からない。= I don’t know where the ship is. (△ 居場所 is usually used for people)
          行方不明= something/someone is missing. (X You don’t say 居場所不明. )

          The difference:
          You also use 居場所 to indicate the place to be/stay

          家に私の居場所がない。= There is no place to be in my house. (X You don’t say 家に私の行方がない)


          (1) Aは、Bより大きい
          (2) Aの方が、Bより大きい

          Yes, “no hou ga” emphasizes the contrast. →(2) shows the contrast more.

          Thank you for your nice words. I am always learning from all the comments.
          You have been improving just because you study hard.
          Keep it up :)

  35. guest says:

    Hello Maggie-sensei!

    Thank you for your help last time! I appreciate it so much !heart3!
    I have another question for you, if you don’t mind. I was reading something and came across the word ‘annara.’ Is this a contraction of some sort for ‘aru nara’?

  36. ivan says:

    1- I saw on television(nhk to de more precise) an interview with a woman when she needed to say some verb in the polite form she said:

    あるです、忘れたです and 信じられないです。
    I want to know if this is common, saying a verb in the casual and them adding です instead of saying the verb in the polite form.

    2- in some videos on the internet i saw people adding な to いadjectives.the examples:


    i really want to know why they did that.

    3- seeing videos on youtube i learned the word おっかない after reading that おっかない means scary, i want to know the difference between おっかない and 怖/恐い.

    • Maggie says:


      1. We say 信じられないです ( ~ ない+です) but あるです・忘れたです are grammatically wrong. Though it is not common, I can imagine some young people say that.

      2. I have a lesson on this. Check this lesson on な.

      I would say おっかない is more conversational (Not just for young people. Actually older people might use it more.). (Some consider it is originally from a dialect)

  37. The river puppy says:

    お誕生日おめでとうございます、ユカリ先生!今日、レッスンを作らないで休んでくださいね!レッスンを作ったり僕の質問を答えたりしてくれてありがとうございました!ずっとこの親切で素敵なままでいてください。XD :kanpai1:

    • @the river puppy

      Love you boucingheart!

      • 天人 says:

        居てくれて、ありがとう (* ̄3 ̄) むちゅ~

        • @天人

          ありがとう〜!!!! 天人さんもやさしいですね。 !heart3!
          Yukariと私からBig Hug送ります!! !heartsippai!

          • Marianne says:

            Bonne fête Maggie Sensei~!!
            いい誕生日を過ごすことができたみたいで嬉しいです ^_^
            おめでとう boucingheart!

      • @Marianne

        Merci, c’est très gentil.
        大好き boucingheart!

  38. Shiani says:

    Konbanwa Maggie Sensei,
    Nihongo oshiete iru no saito no naka niwa, subete gimi tatoe de “tanaka-san” wo mimasu. Guuguru sureba no wa, henna e shika wo agemasen. Nihonjin no uchiwauke toka shujinkou toka, dare ga “tanaka” desuka?? !beginners! Sore ni, atarashii koneko boucingheart! wo kaita bakari dakara
    onamae “Shiyoki” ga imi aru no, ga betsu na kotoba mirai wo kitte imasuka?

    In english to avoid misinterpretation or mistranslation;
    Hi Maggie Sensei,
    In Japanese learning websites, I see (someone named) “Tanaka-san” in almost every example (of Japanese grammar, vocab, etc.). When I google it all I get is weird pictures (creepy men, anime, even restaurants), so is he an inside Japanese joke or cultural tale character – WHO IS TANAKA SAN? Also, I just bought a new kitten (with no name) so does the name “Shiyoki” have any meaning (and if so, any kanji) or sound like any other words (in summary, is it a good name)?
    Kyou, bunkateki shitsumon arimasu ne. Arigato gozaimasu sensei! !greenapple! 

  39. Yotam says:

    Hello sensei!
    How should we say “most” or “mostly” in japanese as in “Most of the people can’t speak French.”?
    If you have already done such a lesson, please share the link (for I don’t find such a lesson)
    Thank you!

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Yotam,
      There are a couple of way to say “most and mostly” but ほとんど should work in many cases.

      Most = ほとんどの/ 大体(だいたい)の /たいていの/ 大部分(だいぶぶん)の

      “Most of the people can’t speak French.”?

      Mostly = ほとんどは、たいていは、大体(だいたい)は, ほぼ

      Ex. I’ve mostly finished my thesis.

  40. Marianne says:

    Hello again, Maggie Sensei.

    この文でほどの意味はなんですか?—> 難しくて面白くないと感じることは、身につかないことが目に見えている。勉強は、楽しいと感じる人ほど、身につき、成績もよくなるのだ。

    “You learn and get good grades from studying to the extent of people who find studying fun.”って読みますけど、おかしくないですか?

    • Maggie says:


      I will just give you a general idea
      “If you think learning is difficult and boring, it is obvious that you won’t learn anything. The more you find studying fun, the more you learn and gets better grade.”

      • Marianne says:

        Wouldn’t that be 勉強は、楽しいと感じるほど、身につき、成績もよくなるのだ。? Why is there 人 before ほど?

        Also, one more question: I was having a conversation with someone who was at home on a Saturday when they usually have school, so I asked “土曜日は学校なかったっけ?”, and he responded “いや、ただ休みなだけ.” I thought なだけ only came after な-adjectives, but can it be used with nouns as well? What is the difference between noun + だけ and noun + なだけ?

        Sorry for all these questions, and thanks in advance^_^

        • Maggie says:


          Ahhh OK, I think I see your confusion. It sounds more natural to use “you” (in general) for ひと in English but the direct translation is The person who finds studying fun tends to learn more and get better grades.

          2nd question:

          You are right, you use なだけ in the following case
          na-adjective な + だけ

          休み is a noun so it’s grammatically wrong.
          However we say that a lot in conversation.

          In colloquial usage, we sometimes make an adverb with a noun and and auxiliary verb
          Noun*+ な (conjugation of だ)


          Ex.まだ子供だ→ まだ子供であるだけ→まだ子供なだけ。(conversational)

          • Marianne says:

            Thank you so much! I finally get that sentence I’ve been struggling with ^_^
            And I didn’t know that な was a conjugation of だ, it’s so much clearer now. I finally understand the grammar construction. I have just one last question, if you don’t mind… ^^;

            What is the difference in nuance between noun+だけ and noun+なだけ? Is なだけ just a little bit more colloquial, and there’s no difference in nuance?

            Ex. まだ子供だけだ。/まだ子供まだけ。
            vs. まだ子供なだけ。

          • Maggie says:


            Hi Marianne,

            Ex. まだ子供だけだ。/まだ子供まだけ。→typo?
            vs. まだ子供なだけ。

            まだ子供だけだ。 could be 1) There are still only children. (Maybe adults are coming later.) 2) Something is just for children at the moment.

            まだ子供なだけ She/He is just a child. That’s all.

          • Marianne says:

            Yes, that was a typo. Whoops ^^;

            I see. So noun + だけ is a little more vague than noun + なだけ. Thank a ton for all the help. Hope you have a nice Golden Week^^

          • Maggie says:


            ありがとう! Marianne!
            You have a nice week,too! :)

  41. guest says:

    Hi Sensei!

    I can’t respond to your last comment for some reason but thank you very much! That helps a lot :grin:

    I’m sorry to bother you but may I ask one more question about it? When I look up the definition for 総括, the words I get are synthesis/recap/generalize. 三人の総括 then becomes “three people’s synthesis”? Is there anything else this word can mean? I tried to find example sentences to see if I can understand the meaning better but there are only example sentences of 総轄.

    • Maggie says:

      統括 also means “to put something together/ to control something all together”
      I don’t know the context but の can be a subject or an object.
      If they are listing up three top leaders, 三人の統括 could mean “those three people will take a control/give directions”

  42. guest says:

    Hi Sensei!

    I was reading something and didn’t know how to make sense of this sentence. Can you please help?


    I understand each word individually but I have no idea how to put it together. The closest thing I could think of was “more than the pain, the terror was enough to kill someone.” Am I close at all?

    • Maggie says:


      Hi guest,
      The subject of the sentence is 恐怖 and 痛み以上の modifies 恐怖
      So if I use some parts of your translation,
      the terror (which is) more than pain is enough to kill someone (Or just kills people)

      • guest says:


        • Maggie says:


          どういたしまして! :)

          • guest says:

            Hi again, Sensei!


            This is what I am having trouble with:
            掟をさだめ 協議の場を設ける
            三人の総括も含め これにより決められた事は伊賀の総意である

            So what I have is:
            掟をさだめ 協議の場を設ける
            A code/rule is decided, and a conference location is established.

            三人の総括も含め これにより決められた事は伊賀の総意である
            Taking into account three people’s synthesis(?), the Iga makes decisions through consensus of opinion.

            I think I am having so much trouble because some of the words have many different meanings and I’m not sure how to string everything together. If it’s not too much trouble, I would really appreciate your help again!

          • Maggie says:


            I won’t do the translation but I will show you the structure.
            掟をさだめ 協議の場を設ける
            to do A and B.
            A = 掟をさだめる
            B = 協議の場を設ける
            You are translating with passive form but “We will establish (set) ~ and ~” or “to establish (set) ~ and ~ “(depending on the context)

            Let me break this down.
            The subject is 決められた事
            So これにより決められた事 (things which have been decided by this)
            三人の総括も含め means “including 三人の統括”

  43. Courtney says:

    Maggie sensei hi!!!! boucingheart! !niconico! 

    So this might be a long message so I apologize in advance. Lately I have been having trouble understanding certain phrases that either pop up at the beginning or middle of sentences such as: そもそも、そういうことで、それでも、それで、なので、そういう、そうなの、こういう、っていうの、もともと、として、いうか、そういうとこ

    So I have an idea of what they mean but when they are in sentences or spoken I can’t seem to um….place them in a coherent English sentence…I think lol…Yeah…..these usually confuse me when I’m trying to translate sentences into English…do you have any lessons on these type phrases or a suggestion on a way to apply them? I’m sorry if it’s alot please don’t feel obligated to answer to all of them just two of them will be enough :) thank you as always!!! <3

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Courtney
      I don’t have a lesson on your question but let me try to explain them now.

      1) そもそも = in the first place
      When you explain why something happened / you do something in the first place.

      Ex. そもそもどうして日本語を勉強しようと思ったの?
      = Why did you want to study Japanese in the first place?

      2) そういうことで  = so, that’s why
      You give a reason or explain some situation and give a conclusion with そういうことで

      (Explaining a reason first in the previous sentence)
      Ex. そういうことで明日は会えません。
      =That’s why (So) I won’t be able to see you tomorrow.

      3) それでも still, regardless ~ + contradicted sentence

      Ex. 彼は忙しい人だ。それでも私に会ってくれた。
      = He is a busy person. Still he (made a time and) saw me.

      4) それで = and then, that’s why, so

      A : 昨日、財布を家に忘れました。
      = I left my wallet at home yeterday.

      B : それでどうしたの?
      = And what happened?

      A : それで友達にお金を借りました。
      = So I borrowed money from my friend.

      5) なので = because / since + reason

      Noun + なので
      Na-adjective な+ので

      Ex. Maggieはきれいなのでもてます。:)
      = Since Maggie is beautiful, she is popular among boys.

      = But since she is a dog, she was dumped.

      6) そういう = like that + 8) こういう= like this

      = Don’t eat like that.

      Ex. そういうセーターが欲しかった。
      = I wanted to have a sweater like that.

      7) そうなの = Is that so. Do you? Is it?…etc. / I see / That’s right (female speech)

      Ex.A: 彼と別れたの。
      = I broke up with him.
      B: えっ?そうなの?
      = What? You did?

      Ex. A : 彼と別れたの?
      = Did you break up with him?
      B : そうなの。
      = Yes, you are right. (I did. )

      9) っていうの (colloquial) というの (sounds a bit feminine )

      Someone said ~ (When you quote what someone said.)
      Ex. 彼は私のことが好きだっていうの。
      = He said he liked me, you know.

      something called ~ / It is called

      Ex. あの子、マギーっていうの。
      = She is called “Maggie”.

      10) もともと originally, from the beginning, naturally

      Ex. 彼はもともと面白い人だ。
      = He is a naturally funny person

      11) として = as

      Ex. この建物は昔は市場として使われていました。
      = This building was used as a market in old days.

      12) いうか

      You mean 〜というか? If so, it means “or” “not A but B””rather ~ “
      You use it when you rephrase something.

      = It looks like a fox rather than a dog.

      13) そういうとこ I already explained 2) そいういうことで but other than that,

      Ex. そういうことではありません。
      = That’s not it.

      Whew…How’s that?

      • Courtney says:

        Wahhhhh! Maggie sensei! That was awesome, thank you so much for explaining all of that! You truly did too much but I am very very grateful for it! Your explanations make a lot of sense and now I understand it completely! Thanks for all your hard work! You truly are the best Japanese teacher anyone could ask for!!! boucingheart! boucingheart!

  44. manik says:

    maggie sensei, can yoou explain about 「どうしたら~か」?
    this is the example:どうしたらその土地の人と友達になれるのかと聞いてみると、「その人たちの食べるものを、一緒に食べることだ」という答えが返ってきた。

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Manik
      “to ask someone how to do something/ how S should do something”
      So basically a speaker is asking someone’s suggestion what they should do to be a friend of local people.

      So basic pattern is (question) かと聞く
      Ex. 「どこに住(す)んでいるのですか?」Where do you live?
      →どこに住んでいるかと聞(き)く to ask someone where he/she lives

      Ex. 「どうしたらマギーの友達になれるの?」How can I be your friend, Maggie?
      →どうしたらマギーの友達になれるのか聞く to ask Maggie how to be her friend.

  45. Shiro-san says:


    • Maggie says:


      はい、元気ですよ。Shiroさんも元気?((名前)はどうですか?→もし誰かが病気だったりして心配する時は使いますが、普通は(名前)、元気ですか? の方が自然です。)

      謀る = to plot/ scheme something

      • Shiro-san says:


      • triet dao says:

        dear Maggie sensei,

        would you please help clarify how to use “kondo” correctly since it can be translated as “last time”, “this time” or “next time”. That confuses me a lot.

        Thank you for your help, Maggie sensei !

        Best Regards,

        Triet Dao

        • Maggie says:

          @tried dao

          今度 (= kondo) means “this time/ now” or “the next time/ next/sometime”. (But I don’t know if it used as “last time”. If you have seen the usage, please give me the example.)

          To know the difference you have to pay attention to the verb tense and situation.

          1) this time

          * with past tense
          It didn’t work out this time either.

          * When you are about to do something.

          = It’s my turn now (this time).

          = I will do my best now. (this time)

          2) next time

          When you can tell the speaker is obviously talking about future.

          Why don’t we go somewhere sometime.

          = I want to do it well the next time.

  46. Shiro-san says:

    Hi, Sensei! I Hope you are fine ^^
    I have three questions.

    1:It’s just a matter of assurance> Can I use “と+(verb that express desire/thought/said things,etc)” for third and second persons as well?
    それでいいと思います。(I) Think that it’s fine.
    それでいいと言った。 (I) Said that “it’s fine”.
    それでいいと願う。 (I) Hope that it’s fine.
    In any example above, “I” is omitted.
    If I put the person that thinks/says/hopes that way, is it grammatically correct?
    彼はそれでいいと思います。”He thinks that it’s fine.”
    Just for assurance, is that correct?

    2:In “Zetsuen no Tempest”, Mahiro quoted Shakespeare and said:
    I translated it as (“In order to fix that, I was born.”)
    But, what とは means in the end?

    3:How do I use でもない?
    I found this sentence:
    I know the meaning, but I don’t understand why でも is used + ない, even with the けど.

    Help, Sensei!

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Shiro-san,


      それでいいと思います。(I) Think that it’s fine.
      It sounds strange with other people.
      But 彼はそれでいいと思っている works.

      それでいいと言った。 (I) Said that “it’s fine”.
      It works.

      それでいいと願う。 (I) Hope that it’s fine.
      This sentence itself is unnatural.
      But again と願っている form works with other people.

      2. That とは express your surprised feeling.

      You leave the sentence unfinished intentionally so that the readers can read between the lines.
      Ex. ~とはすばらしい/驚きだ

      3. Here’s the pattern

      neither A nor B

      • Shiro-san says:

        Thanks, Sensei!
        So, using と in this way, if I would like to write for example…
        Erik is a Hunter(Or… as his cute little sister calls him: “Criminal-kun”).
        Is that right? I’m not that certain…

  47. billy says:

    Hello! !greenapple! 

    I was reading a manga and came across “あらんことを”.
    I get what it means, but I can’t find much about this phrase or conjugation.
    Can you explain where this “あらん” comes from?
    I first thought it was short for あらない, but that doesn’t seem right.


    A girl that can control paper says this before leaving.

    Thanks! !happyface!

    • 天人 says:

      Hello billy,
      あらんことを (=動詞「あり」の未然形+意志の助動詞「む」を「ん」に変えた連体形) is a classical expression and it means ありますように.
      紙 should be 神, I think.

      それで、 「神のご加護があらんことを」は May God bless you / May God be with you という意味になります。


    • Maggie says:


      Hi Billy,
      あらんことを is kind of old expression
      = 神のご加護がありますように(祈っています)。

      あらん=ある(will be there/ You will have ~ )

      May the Force be with you!
      = フォースと共にあらんことを。

  48. Marianne says:

    @天人さん 素晴らしい説明ありがとうございました!天人さんのおかげでわかってきました!

    @マギー先生 The よう that I didn’t understand, was the usage of よう in the sentence: 「ある事柄をするよう勧める意」。I still don’t understand the usage, but thank you for explaining the use of ては。とても勉強になりました^^

    • Maggie says:

      @天人 Thank you for helping Marianne

      = I suggested that she should get some rest.
      = I told him to study Japanese more.

      ては is usually used in a direct speech.
      or when you quote what someone suggested.


  49. Marianne says:

    Hello, Maggie Sensei!

    I’m very tired today so I’ll be writing in English ^^;
    I was reading a dictionary definition for verbて+は, and saw this as one of the definitions, but what does よう mean in the sentence? How is it different from ように? I’m not sure what the definition means.


    1. 多く「…てはどうか」の形で)ある事柄をするよう勧める意を表す。「書いてみ―どうだろう」

    Also, can you explain this other definition for verbて+は? And provide easier examples?

    2. 反駁(はんぱく)・感心などの強い感情をもたらす原因となる条件を示す。…たからには。「そこまで言われ―黙っていられない」「これだけやっつけられ―反論する気も起きない」

    • Maggie says:




      Hmm I wonder what usage of よう you think is similar…
      This one? ↓
      when you show your intention
      Ex. もう寝よう= I guess I am going to bed now.

      If so, while  よう is used to express your intention, ては is used for suggestion for others.

      Verb + てはどうでしょう?・いかがですか?・どう?

      Ex. もう寝てはいかがですか?(polite)
      = I think you should go to bed now.

      (casual way)
      = Why don’t you go to bed now.

      • 天人 says:

        Hello Marianne,
        I will answer your second question.

        This ~ては has the same meaning like ~たからには, it implies that “since something has been already done, then… [==> result]”. It’s a very emphatic expression.
        1. そこまで言われては黙っていられない。 = Since he/she has gone so far, I cannot keep quiet anymore.
        2. これだけやっつけられては反論する気も起きない。 = He doesn’t feel like hitting back, since his ass got kicked that much.


  50. obakasan000 says:

    Good day dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much for explaining it to me. !JYANE!
    My question for today is about this sentence from “asking directions” lesson

    Is this the right street to get to Meiji Shrine?

    I would like to ask if there would be a difference in meaning if I added の before に+は = 行くの+に+は in this particular sentence?
    Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

    • Maggie says:


      Hi orikousan,


      You can add の when you emphasize the meaning. In this case, emphasizing “going to Meiji jinguu”
      (But not other places)

      It is always pleasure to answer your questions. You are so polite. :)

      • obakasan000 says:

        Good day dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much.
        My concerns for today is about these particular sentences.


        Given translation:
        Let’s continue to overcome any obstacle in our way together.

        I think the translator used the word “continue” even though there is no も after これから先 because this update was about an Anniversary.

        But my translation is something like this:

        Let’s overcome any obstacle [ahead of us/in our way] together.
        There is no も after これから先 so I did not use “continue” even though its obvious in the context that they have been overcoming many obstacles in their career.

        My question is, should I have used “continue” in my interpretation even though there is noも after これから先 because it is obvious in the context?


        I would like to ask if 夢の modifies 横浜 alone, or the whole “横浜アリーナで迎える事” clause (夢の事)

        Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

        • Maggie says:



          1. I think what confused you the part, これから先
          これから先 means “from now on” (It will be better to have a punctuation, これから先、)
          If it says これから先”の”壁も… Then it means “obstacles ahead of us”

          As for the “continue” translation,

          Good! As you said if the sentence is
          then it implies they have been working together so it should means “continue”/”keep ~ing”

          But since it just says これから so your translation “Let’s overcome ~” is actually more accurate.

          2. 夢の modies 横浜アリーナ

          • obakasan000 says:

            Good day dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much.
            I would like to ask for help regarding this sentence.


            ダイビング = diving
            あまりの感動の多さ = “Manyness”of being moved too much
            この記事だけでは書ききれないので = Too many to be written in this single update.

            Translation given:
            There are so many things that moved me while diving that I don’t have enough room to write about all of them here, so…

            I am having a hard time to figuring out what is the role of に after 多さ. I don’t know if It can be translated as:

            “because of/for/to” Being too much deeply moved, this update won’t be enough for me to write about diving so…

            If sensei thinks the sentence is kinda unusual, if it is alright, I would like to ask for common examples.

            Thank you so much in advance, dear Maggie sensei.

          • Maggie says:



            に has many functions but this に is to show a cause. “due to ~ / because of ~/ by ” so your interpretation is right.
            You could also say
            あまりに感動したことが多いので〜 (This で also is to indicate a reason/cause)

            Ex. 寒(さむ)さに震(ふる)える= shiver with [from] cold (because of cold)
            Ex. 飢(う)えに苦(くる)しむ = suffer from starvation

  51. hana says:

    Hi Maggie! I’m not sure how Japan celebrates Easters but maybe you guys get lots of candy too??
    I’m just wondering if you find the below sentence strange:


    This “二、三年行く” sounds really strange to me.

    As an example below:



    Does the explanation above apply to “二、三年行く” too?

    Thank you.

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Hana!
      We see all the cute bunny chocolates at the stores and Tokyo Disney Land has Easter parade but we don’t celebrate Easters as much as Christmas or Halloween.
      However, I heard from some TV shows that Easter celebration is getting “popular” a little by little in Japan.
      But it is all for business.

      I know 行く means “to go” but we often use this verb as ”to go some place and stay there.” in conversation.
      So 2、3年行く there means “someone goes to the States and be there for a couple of years.”

      • hana says:

        Oh that is interesting to know! Mostly children celebrate Easters here, probably for all the candy they get to eat. I think they should just call it Candy Day and leave it at that :D

        Thanks for clearing it up Maggie, so like this:

        (correct) アメリカに二、三年行きます。

        Is the below still wrong though?

        (wrong) アメリカに二、三年行きました。

        I’m guessing you need something like アメリカに二、三年行っていました。

  52. Shiani says:

    Hello Maggie Sensei! Back again, this time with a few more inquiries ^^
    Since I want to be fluent to the point of colloquial conversation- not necessarily above if not necessary- is the JLPT a good representation of typical, daily Japanese?
    And a few grammatical things I’ve been wondering-
    Is using the wo particle topic marker with a person’s name polite? I’ve never seen name wo verb used before, only name wa verb or name ga verb.
    Also, how do double negatives work in Japanese? I know that x-nai ga ikenai = must do x because the negatives cancel each other out, but could that logic be applied to other sentence structures? For example, if I say “nobody isn’t here” in Japanese, would that mean someone is there, or isn’t there?
    Thank you so much!! !greenapple!  !Anapple! !greenapple! 

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Shiani,
      を(=wo) is an object marker so you do use it with people’s name.

      = Shiani wo haha ni shoukai shimasu.
      = I will introduce Shiani to my mother.

      = Shiani san wo shinjite imasu.
      = I believe in Shiani

      Nobody does ~ = 誰も〜ない(=daremo ~ nai)
      Nobody is here = 誰もここにいない( = dare mo koko ni inai)

      For other usage of double negative, check my double negative lesson.

      Nothing is = なにも〜ない

  53. 丸本k says:

    おはようございます maggie sensei,
    i want to ask what kind of keigo phrases when leaving a week on your work place? do ypu have to use formal words when leaving or just casual? ! :roll:

    • Maggie says:


      You are supposed to talk to your boss in polite Japanese.
      It doesn’t have to be overly polite.
      (Ishuukan, oyasumi wo itadakitai nodesuga)
      I would like to take a week off…

      = Isshuukan hodo, oyasumi wo itadakemasu de shouka?
      = Could you allow me to take about a week off?

  54. manik says:

    Oke I see..
    And how about によって?

    • Maggie says:

      I already answered your question on Twitter but I just found all your comments were in Spam file for some reason.
      I think I should check Spam file sometime. Sorry!

  55. manik says:

    Hi maggie sensei..
    Would you like to explain about this grammar ”ni hoka naranai” and ”wo tooshite” thank you so much :3

    • Maggie says:


      Hi manik

      Do you want to make a sentence so that I can check it for you?

      ~にほかならない( ni hoka naranai) means “nothing but””It is nothing else but ~ ”
      A is nothing but ~ / A is the very ~ = ~~~ wa A ni hokanaranai.

      = Kanojo ga sukina hito wa X ni hoka naranai.
      = X is the very person who she likes.

      通して(tooshite) through, by mean of

      To do something through A = A を通して+ verb

      = Kare wo tooshite kono kaisha no koto wo shitta.
      = I got to know this company through him.

      • manik says:

        thank you so much maggie sensei :-D

        I have a question again, what is the diferent of を通して&~することによって?

        • Maggie says:


          While を通して is used with noun or verb することによって is used only with a verb.
          Ex. 私達は彼を通して知り合いました。
          = Watashitachi wa kare wo tooshite shiriaimashita.
          = We got to know each other through him.
          X You can’t use することによって

          But when を通してis used with a verb, you may interchange with することによって

          = Hito to hanasu koto wo tooshite iroiro na koto wo manaberu.
          = Hito to hanasu koto ni yotte iroiro na koto wo manaberu.
          = We can learn many things by talking with people.

          But 通して implies a process and することによって could be just one time thing.

          verb ことによって : You get to do something by doing something

          • manik says:

            Oke I see..
            And how about によって? I found this sentence

  56. reid says:


    My question today is about a kanji. There is a series called 修理、魅せます, and when I looked up the word 魅せます nothing showed up. Even on the kanji’s own page this word is nowhere to be seen.

    So what does this word mean exactly? I could make guesses going by the kanji’s meaning, but I am really curious to know exactly what it is.

  57. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. Sorry I didn’t reply to your last answer. It was really helpful and made so much sense! Thanks Maggie sensei! The reason why I didn’t was because I had some really terrible internet connection for awhile and couldn’t load the page.

    Anyway, I have been studying the Kagiru lesson and it has been great although quite difficult for me.

    I made some sentences to test if I have learnt it. Please tell me if i am correct or wrong. (Or if it is gramatically correct but unnatural) Sorry if there are too many sentences but I was unsure.

    1. 人にはお鼻が1つに限ります。 (A person is limited to only having 1 nose)

    2. 日本語を勉強すればマギー先生ドットコムで勉強するに限るよ。 (If you are studying Japanese, it is best to study at Maggie sensei dot com)

    3. Coincidentally, can Kagiru be used in a similar fashion as the (to iu to) and (to ittara) patterns, with some differences? such as:

    日本語の勉強と言ったらマギー先生ドットコムですよ (There’s nothing better than Maggie sensei dot com to study Japanese)

    4. 味が嫌いので、今度を限りにミルクを飲むのがやめます。 (This time is the last time I drink milk because I hate the taste)—–>This is probably too formal to describe something like this but I wanted to use the formal form.

    5. 昨日限りでタバコを吸う事はなかった。 (Yesterday was the last time I will ever smoke a cigarette)

    6. この三匹の子犬に限ってワクチンができました。 (Only these three puppies have been vaccinated)

    7. 人生は物事がよくなりそう時に限って急に悪くなちゃうという辛い物です。 (Life is bitter in that whenever everything seems to get better it suddenly becomes worse.)

    8. いつも動いているのに、今お腹が空いてる限ってすべての店やレストランなども休んだ。(They are always open but now that I am hungry all the restaurants and shops have closed)—is it ok to omit the
    (私に) or is it just totally wrong.

    9. 子犬を飼わない限り幸せな人生を過ごさない。 (As long as you don’t raise a puppy, you can’t live a happy life)

    10. One last question…would you say Kagiri is similar to hodo (in that it expresses a limit)

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
    マギー先生ってサイトを見つけたのが嬉しいでマギー先生に感謝しています! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy
      1. 人にはお鼻が1つに限ります。

      Haha, it is funny but it doesn’t sound natural because we can’t choose the number of noses and nobody can decide what numbers of noses we can have.

      But If you buy things 一人一つに限ります works.

      2. 日本語を勉強すればマギー先生ドットコムで勉強するに限るよ。 (If you are studying Japanese, it is best to study at Maggie sensei dot com)


      3. Coincidentally, can Kagiru be used in a similar fashion as the (to iu to) and (to ittara) patterns, with some differences? such as:

      日本語の勉強と言ったらマギー先生ドットコムですよ (There’s nothing better than Maggie sensei dot com to study Japanese)

      限る is stronger.
      4. 味が嫌いので、今度を限りにミルクを飲むのがやめます。


      5. 昨日限りでタバコを吸う事はなかった。 (Yesterday was the last time I will ever smoke a cigarette)

      It is fine but verb ことはなかった is usually used when you haven’t done something for a long time since ~ so 昨日 is too soon.
      6. この三匹の子犬に限ってワクチンができました。 (Only these three puppies have been vaccinated)


      7. 人生は物事がよくなりそう時に限って急に悪くなちゃうという辛い物です。 (Life is bitter in that whenever everything seems to get better it suddenly becomes worse.)

      →急にうまくいかなくなることがあるので辛い。will be more natural.

      8. いつも動いているのに、今お腹が空いてる限ってすべての店やレストランなども休んだ。(They are always open but now that I am hungry all the restaurants and shops have closed)—is it ok to omit the
      (私に) or is it just totally wrong.


      9. 子犬を飼わない限り幸せな人生を過ごさない。 (As long as you don’t raise a puppy, you can’t live a happy life)


      10. One last question…would you say Kagiri is similar to hodo (in that it expresses a limit)

      I don’t think so. ほど is used to express the degree or compare things.

      マギー先生ってサイトを見つけたのが嬉しいでマギー先生に感謝しています! XD



  58. billy says:

    Back again! !BOO!!

    Book is 魔女の家 エレンの日記, narrated from Ellen’s point of view.
    Context: Earlier in the story, she killed her parents. She’s now thinking about her current life in her new magical house that has all she thinks she needs, bed, books, etc.


    I don’t get the “上塗りされてしまう程度のものだったのよ”, or what it’s referring to.
    Is it about her parents? Or her desires? Or something else?
    Can you explain what it’s talking about and what it means?

    Thank you for any help. !ohisama!

    • Maggie says:


      I think it refers to her desires.
      The basic structure is
      After all my desires is just ~ level.

      The literal meaning of 上塗り is overcoating

      Ellen used to seek for parental love.
      But once she got a healthy body and warm bed and her desire to learn is fulfilled, she doesn’t need parental love anymore. So her original desire for parental love got easily “overcoated” (= replaced) by other desires.

  59. Veron says:

    I have a little question…
    Verb + noun :rrrr: I know that a verb can modify a noun, but…
    Verb + pronoun the verb can modify a pronoun? For example, I’ve seen “kimi” at the end of the sentence just after a verb, and I do not understand if you only order was altered…
    Thanks! !DANCING!

  60. Shiani says:

    Hajimemashite, Maggie! Although I’ve only found your site this year, it’s one of my top resources learning Japanese. !Anapple! However, there are a few aspects of the language I can’t seem to get; mainly how to tell -na adjectives apart from adverbs these days. Do you have to memorize each case, or is there a hidden mechanism to help you…
    One more thing; is the -yo at the end of phrases such as -ii desuyo or hou ga iiyo necessary, because speaking to others in Japanese I don’t want to accidentally come off as rude putting that particle in, since I’ve been told it has strong expression.
    Arigato!!! !greenapple! 

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Shiani,

      Q:how to tell -na adjectives apart from adverbs these days
      I am sorry but I don’t quite understand your question.
      Can you give me an example?
      You mean using na-adjective” as an adverb like

      As for the suffx よ please check this lesson.
      What I marked as “male speech” is rude to use.

      • Shiani says:

        Hi Maggie,
        By “these days” I just meant the topic I’m currently working on learning Japanese, not how the language is evolving; although I didn’t make that very clear, sorry!
        It’s just that na-adjectives can end with any kana, I think; like shizen, shizuka, ichiban… and adverbs can also end with any kana, but adverbs don’t need particles to be grammatically correct, while na-adjectives need the na kana. So is there a way to tell if a word I’ve never heard before is an adj or adverb, so I can use it right in my own speech
        For example, I know that itsumo is an adverb, but what if I didn’t and used -na after it… is this just a matter of memorizing what is and isn’t an adjective

        Thanks for directing me to the lesson! It cleared my confusion up on the yo kana !greenapple! 
        Mo, konna ringo kao moji ga aishiteru!

        • Maggie says:


          You said any かな but actually there is a rule.
          When na-adjective modifies a noun, the kana will be “な”(=na) and when an adverb modifies a verb, the kana will be に(=ni)

          静か= しずか= shizuka
          adjective: しずか”な”こうえん= Shizukana kouen = a quiet park
          adverb: しずか”に”あるく= Shizuka ni aruku = to walk quietly.

          自然= しぜん= shizen
          adjective: しぜん”な”はなしかた= shizen na hanashikata = natural way of speech
          adverb: しぜん”に”はなす= shizen ni hanasu = to talk naturally

          • Shiani says:

            Huh, is that a rule for all Japanese sentences; if so then my understanding of Japanese just improved 10 fold! Thank you sensei; I hope to go through all your lessons someday… !greenapple! 

  61. billy says:

    Hi Maggie! It’s been a while!
    Wow, it looks like I haven’t been in here since 2013!

    I’m having trouble with a sentence in a book.

    The story is about a girl with a sick body, gets magic powers from a talking cat. Later, she tricks someone into switching bodies with her.
    However, this causes her to lose her powers, giving them to her victim.
    The victim uses these powers to trap her in a forest.
    The next part is where I’m having trouble.

    「どうするの?人間がこんなところにいると危ないよ」 黒猫の物言いに、私はいったん目を丸くして、それから吹き出した。 人間だって。 言いたいことがわかる。 健康な身体を手に入れられたことへの賛辞と、非力な肉体になってしまったことへの皮肉だろう。

    I think I somewhat get the meaning, but I’m mostly having trouble with the part below.

    言いたいことがわかる。 健康な身体を手に入れられたことへの賛辞と、非力な肉体になってしまったことへの皮肉だろう。

    First, is ~がる not required when using ~たい for someone else wanting to do something?

    Second, I just cant completely get that last sentence. I’ve shortened it to emphasize what’s throwing me off.

    言いたいことがわかる。 …ことへの賛辞と、…ことへの皮肉だろう。

    Is she telling the reader that the cat wants to both give a compliment and a snide remark?
    Or am I completely misunderstanding this.
    I’m really doubting myself with this one for some reason.

    Would the following also be correct?

    Sorry for all the text.
    Thanks always for any help!
    Last time I was here, I could barely understand simple video games, I hadn’t realized how far I’d progressed.
    You’re one of the reasons I’ve stuck with this for so long.
    So thanks again! I really appreciate all the help! !happyface!

    • Maggie says:


      Hi billy

      I’m happy to hear you have been studying Japanese.

      Is it from 魔女の家?

      Q1 :
      人間だって- 言いたいことがわかる

      The subject of 言いたい and わかる are different.

      Even a human – can understand what you want to say


      I am not sure but the speaker thinks what the black cat said, “「どうするの?人間がこんなところにいると危ないよ」is


      • billy says:

        Yeah, it’s the book 魔女の家 エレンの日記.
        I remember asking you for help with the game way back. 8-O

        To make things easier, the book is from Ellen’s point of view.

        I thought that 人間だって was talking about how the cat referred to Ellen as 人間, and Ellen thought getting called a 人間 was a 皮肉 / 賛辞.
        If I remember correctly, Ellen didn’t think of herself as normal / human, and worked so hard to steal another person’s body, so that’s probably why I thought this.

        I guess what also confused me is that 人間だって。 and 言いたいことがわかる。 were two separate sentences.

        I hope the above helps point out why I find this so confusing. :-D
        Always a huge help !niconico! 

        • Maggie says:


          I see. I got the scene better now. In that case だって is not “even”
          We also use ~ だってwhen you question what you just heard repeating the word with だって
          人間だって。He/ She(=the black cat) called me “human”, huh?

          言いたいことはわかる = I understand what you/she/he( the black cat) mean(s).

          • billy says:

            Sorry I left out some context. I was trying to keep it short :cryingboy:
            Thanks for your help. I think I more or less get it now. It was just so many things used in a way I wasn’t familiar with thrown at me all at once. !greenapple! 
            I’ll get it completely after seeing similar sentences over time.

            Next time, my question won’t be so long !niconico! 
            Thanks again!

          • Maggie says:


            You’re welcome!
            Have a nice weekend! :)

  62. hana says:

    Hi Maggie, woof! No more causative questions this time, still hate them though! Just a random and probably stupid question:


    This “知覚し思考し得る”, does し得る only modify 思考, or 知覚 too? Something like “知覚し得り、思考し得る”

    I don’t think it modifies 知覚 but dictionary definitions tend to be succinct so…

    • Maggie says:


      Yes, し得る could modify both of them because there is no punctuation before 思慮し.
      But it still makes sense 知覚する+そして+思考し得る

      • hana says:

        Okay I guess punctuation is the key here, like this sentence


        where 証明し is preceded by a punctuation and thus doesn’t take 得る.

        Thanks again, Maggie, woof!

  63. Kaito says:

    Thanks for the help Maggie-sensei, my native language is spanish, i read and hear a lot of things in japanese and english, but it is the only one in what i usually write and speak, hence the, perhaps, weird write style

    “I have no choice” is the same translation that i reached for どうもこうもない but i found so little info about this term, and nothing conclusive, that i could not being sure, if you say so, then i trust, i will add this meaning to my personal dictionary

    What about the other term?, どうもこうもない it is clear now but i still having problems with どうもこうも, i thought that i was ignoring some meaning of どうもこうもない and because that i can not fully understand どうもこうも, which is in deed the real headache here, i also thought that removing the negative sense of ない will be easily discernible but even now i do not catch the meaning…

    If you could clarify me this doubt i will be happy, al least until the next “existencial doubt” XD, i tend to solve my doubts on myself so i will not bother you too much

    • Maggie says:

      どうもこうも/どうもこうもない are the same.
      We also say

      It won’t any make sense if you try to translate these words.

      どう = how
      こう= like this
      も(ない)neither ~ and ~
      どうした how it happened/ what I did
      こうした It happened like this/ I did this
      も(ない)neither ~ and ~

      As I said, the original meaning is “there is no choice” but you often say that with frustration when someone asks what happened to you.
      The translation varies depending on the context.
      Ugh! (showing your frustration)
      Don’t even remind me.
      Don’t get me started.
      You know what?
      I couldn’t do anything about it.
      I’m telling you
      It is a horrible story but…
      It is awful but….
      Let me tell you what happened to me…
      I can’t believe what happened.

      Personally, I think “Don’t get me started.” is similar to this usage.

      Ex. Your friend「Kaito、この間のパーティーはどうだったの?」= How was the party the other day Kaito?
      = Kaito 「どうもこうもないよ。みんな酔っ払って大変だった。」= Don’t get me started. It was awful because everybody got drunk.

      • Kaito says:

        So どうもこうもない and どうもこうも are the same?, well, 2×1 less to worry about, this also explains why misteriously the meaning of どうもこうもない seemed to fit with どうもこうも in the sentence that i was trying to translate

        Thanks for the examples, i will add some of them to my personal dictionary together with the meaning of this expression to ilustrate it, thanks again for your help Maggie-sensei


  64. Kaito says:

    Hi Maggie-sensei, i have been visting your site for some time but never write because my english is not good, i have some practice reading so can follow your lessons, but not so much writing nor speaking, apologies in advance for any mistake

    First of all, congratulations for the site and thanks for all your lessons, i have learned many things here that was not able to find nowhere else, besides everything is very well explained

    What i want to consult you about are a couple of terms that i have seen recently, and after a long research i have found almost nothing about them, even searching in japanes sites, i have a vague idea of their meanings basis in the context but i am not sure about it, and even if i am right do not know how to use them or if they have other uses, i hope yo can give me some info about this terms in order to can understand them better

    The terms are どうもこうも/どうもこうもない

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Kaito,

      What language do you speak?

      どうもこうもない means “I have no choice”
      You often use in the context of “What could I do?/ What can I do? I have/had no choice”
      The similar word of どうもこうもない is しかたがない

  65. fernandy says:

    Hi maggie sensei,

    I just start to learn japanese, got confused with japanese phrase, hope you can help me translate this sentence. thank you.


  66. Marianne says:


    • Maggie says:


      こんにちは、Marianne! 元気だった?
      困った子 (困った姫様) is a girl who is needy, naughty, a pain or a troublemaker depending on the context.
      We sometimes use the term as endearment.

      • Marianne says:

        Thank you! Im so so sorry for the incredibly late reply. 実は、最近疲労で全部を忘れていますね(笑)
        お手伝いありがとうございました boucingheart!

  67. Angel says:

    Hello Maggie sensei=) I love your website, it helped me progress my learning in my Japanese courses that I am taking. But I have a question in regards to using words that does not really exist in Japanese. I wanted to use a word that’s similar to heart wrenching
    and I am unsure if I used both of the words correctly.


    • Maggie says:


      Hi Angel!
      Glad to hear this sites helps you improve your Japanese.
      heart wrenching = How about 胸(むね)が痛(いた)くなる →このゲームをし始めると胸が痛くなります。
      But I don’t quite get the first part ストーリーは本当にかんじようできな…..What do you want to say?

      • Angel says:

        Hello again Maggie sensei, thank you for replying so fast.
        I actually found a word that might fit? せつない? So it’ll be このゲームをし始めるとせつないです。

        For the first sentence I wanted to say, This story is very emotionial, especially playing at the beginning of the game. And that’s why I added tokuni for a second sentence to describe the beginning of the game as an example.

        • Maggie says:


          OK, 切ない=setunai works,too. It describes a sad feeling.
          胸が痛くなる/ 胸が痛い is stronger.

          ゲームを始める means “to start playing a game”
          If you meant “beginning of the game” , → ゲームの始め

  68. obakasan000 says:

    Good evening dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much (n_n)

    My question for today is about:

    I would like to ask where なんだか applies to. Is it

    a. 愛着が沸いてしまって
    I feel a sense of attachment (to this) “somehow”, so I am sad.

    b. 寂しい
    I feel attached (to this), so I feel lonely “somehow”.

    Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

    • Maggie says:


      Hi orikousan!
      It could be both.
      To guess what なんだか modifies, you may want to pay attention to the position of なんだか and “ten” = “、”

      →なんだか modifies 愛着が沸いてしまった
      If it modifies 寂しい、it will be more clear to say

      It modifies 寂しい because you separate the sentence after なんだか.

      • obakasan000 says:

        Good day dear Maggie sensei.
        I would like to ask for this particular sentence.

        I think it was fate I met Rookie, so I feel like we definitely have to meet again.

        If the translation is correct, what would be the difference if I would remove なりません and just use the plain 気がする。
        Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

        • Maggie says:


          Yes, the translation is correct.
          気がしてならない/なりません express stronger feelings than 気がする.

          • obakasan000 says:

            Good afternoon dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much.
            My question for today is about this sentence:

            ポスターが貼られる期間は1週間なので、是非お近くを通る際には、渋谷駅に寄って見て行って下さいねー( ´ ▽ ` )ノ

            I would like to ask what is the meaning of 行くin this particular sentence.

            a. Directional 行く
            b. Time related 行く

            I haven’t seen 寄って行く・来る (directional) before so I am not really sure.

            Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

          • Maggie says:


            こんにちは!Orikousan! :)
            It means “Stop by Shibuya Station (渋谷に寄って) and see the poster (ポスターを見ていく)”

            This 行く is actually from verbて+いく form.
            見ていく = to go somewhere and see something (and leave that place)

            For example when someone stops by your place and you want to invite that person for lunch,
            = Nani ka, tabete ikanai?
            = Do you want to eat something (before you leave here)?

  69. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. I just need some confirmation help. I know its annoying to translate letters but please help me…

    Anyway, I read this on a site and I would like to know if I got it right.


    My Translation:

    According to The Washington Post, regarding Apple which refused to cooperate with The Ministry Of Justice, the ministry criticised Apple’s interaction with them, using the possible negative effects on the company’s own reputation as a reason.

    What I would like to know is who made the statement 「自社の評判への悪影響」

    I’m pretty sure it was the Ministry of Justice because the sentence denoted them as a subject but I would like to be 100% sure. Please help Maggie sensei!

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hello, The river puppy!
      Your translation is good except one part.
      It is not “using the possible negative effects” . Apple refused to cooperate with the Ministry of Justice because they (Apple) worries about the negative effects on the the company’s reputation.

      the Ministry of Justice criticized Apple thinking Apple refused to cooperate with them because they (Apple) were concerned about the negative effects on the company.

  70. reid says:

    Hello! This is my first time posting here. I felt bad for leaving unrelated questions on lessons so I will make my next question here. I recently wrote this sentence:


    My intention was to say that I rarely get a cold and I can’t remember the last time I had one. My friend said that this sentence was a bit weird and showed me a different example.

    The problem is that she couldn’t explain clearly what is wrong with my original sentence. So can you help me with that by explaining what is wrong in that?


    • Maggie says:

      Hi reid, Welcome to Maggie’s Room!

      The most natural translation is

      can not remember = 思い出すことができない
      don’t remember = 覚えていない

      Here is the difference
      覚えている= to remember (describing the state of remembering something)
      →(negative potential form) 覚えていることができない
      When you recall your memory, you use 思い出す(=omoidasu)

      覚える= to memorize, to learn (describing the action of learning/memorizing something)
      →(negative potential form) 覚えられない ( can’t memorize)

  71. らわ says:


    incorporate、 implement は日本語でなんと言いますか?例えば:”The theme of the game is “wa”, so aspects of traditional Japanese attire were incorporated into the characters clothing design”


    • Maggie says:




      traditional Japanese attire (日本の伝統的な衣服(着物))が”和風”で訳されているのはらわの考えかなあ。(後にキャラクターの「衣装」が出ているから?)
      和風にはJapanese styleという意味とSomething like Japanese (Not real Japanese)という意味もあります。


      • Lava says:

        マギー先生 答えてくださってありがとうございます!


        • Maggie says:



  72. guest says:

    Hello Maggie Sensei!!

    I was looking at expressions and cannot understand this example sentence (they did not give English translation for it): ima ni natte shitate ni deru no desu ka

    It says that shitate ni deru means to behave modestly but I cannot understand what this sentence is trying to say. Can you please help translate or explain this sentence?

    I am sorry I cannot type Japanese, I am on my phone.

    Thank you in advance Sensei! Arigatougozaimasu!!

  73. Carlos says:

    Hi, Maggie Sensei!

    I would like to ask what does かんじからめ mean.
    I get the feeling that it’s a specific expression, but I can’t find any explanation for it.

    Please help me and correct me if I’m wrong!
    Thanks in advance!

  74. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. I know I haven’t asked a question in awhile but I nevertheless have been studying! Anyway, it’s good to write to you again. Also I have some questions like always. XD

    1. What is the difference between 状態 and 様子, I don’t quite understand why you would use one over the other. If you could give an example/explanation it would be much appreciated.

    2. How do you use oyobi in a sentence (Or rather, how would you use it?) It says in the English dictionary that it has the same meaning as (to) and (ya). I understand the difference between to and ya but under what circumstances would one use oyobi?

    3. Also, I found an explanation in a Japanese dictionary about the difference between oyobi and narabi ni. I wasn’t able to understand the explanation and I also don’t know what narabi ni means at all. So if you could, please tell me how to use narabi ni and what it means.

    I have some more questions but I think i’ll ask them next time. Anyway, i’ll be writing back to you soon.

    Sorry if I haven’t replied to everything you wrote in the past (Reading our previous conversations made me notice that sometimes you wrote stuff and I didn’t reply) The reason for this that my internet connection is dreadfully slow so that it would be weeks before I could post a reply and by then I had already forgotten to.

    But anyway, just to answer something you said a long time ago, yes, I had been reading hanasaki jiisan and you helped me a lot in understanding it. Thanks again! XD

    ALSO! I almost forgot, I know it’s a bit late already but MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! I wanted to write but as I said, my internet stopped working.

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hi! Ohisashiburi desu.

      They are both conditions but
      様子:look, appearance, behavior (based on what you see)
      状態: state of things/people

      Ex. 彼の様子がおかしい。
      = He behaves strange./ He looks strange

      Ex. 彼の状態が危ない
      = His health/physical condition is critical.


      While と and や are conversational 及び(oyobi) is a formal and it means “and/ as well as)

      Ex. 事故および故障の場合はこちらの電話番号にご連絡ください。
      = Jiko oyobi koshou no baai wa kochira no denwa bangou ni gorennraku kudasai.
      = Please call this number in case of incidents and failure.

      Ex. 英語及びフランス語を話す日本人を探しています。
      = Eigo oyobi furansugo wo hanasu nihonjin wo sagashite imasu.
      = We are looking for a Japanese who speaks English and French

      Ah you have to distinguish these especially in legal documents.
      You use oyobi when you list up something that belongs to the same category or level and when you list up something that belongs to different group, you use narabini.

      Merry Christmas, Happy New Year to you too!

  75. Zetsuboumanadeshi says:


    I got some lettercorrections from a nice japanese person, but there are a few things that I don’t understand and cannot find in my grammarbooks.

    1. I wanted to write: “I decided to finish watching this series. このシリーズを見終わることに決めた。”The correction was “見終える”. I wonder whats the difference, since all my grammarbooks only list -終わる as a suffix and give example sentences like 本を読み終わる.

    2. I wanted to write: “While still feeling let down I… がっかりしっぱなしで…” The corrections was がっかりしつつ. I never understood the difference between -っぱなし and -つつ, maybe you could explain it to me?
    お願いいたします :-?

    • Zetsuboumanadeshi says:


    • Maggie says:


      Ohhh I am sorry. I didn’t see your comment and just sniffed you. :)

      1) First 終わる is intransitive verb and 終える is transitive verb.

      a) この本は読み終わった (This book has been read all the way by X.)
      b) この本を読み終えた I finished reading this book

      When you translate a) and b), you translate them both “I finished reading this book” but pay attention to the particle.

      That means, you can not 決める(decide) something with intransitive verb. Therefore you have to use 読み終える

      2) I can’t tell without reading the whole sentence but がっかりしっぱなし is to describe the state when you are (repeatedly) feeling let down a great deal. Since your translation is “while”, you must have a following sentence that describes you did something while feeling let down. When two actions is happening at the same time, you use ながら or つつ →while doing A, you do B.

      Again sorry for the late reply.

      • Zetsuboumanadeshi says:

        Thank you for the answer, Sensei. The Sniffing made me happy too. !greenapple!  But I’m still having trouble with 終わる/終える.

        1. I knew that owaru is intransitive and oeru transitive, but then I found this in one grammar:

        “The verb owaru was originally an intransitive verb, meaning ‘to come to an end.’ However, owaru recently started to be able to be used either as a transitive verb or as a substitute for the transitive verb owaru ‘to finish.’ Oeru is preferred to owaru in formal speech contexts.
        仕事が終わりました。/ *仕事が終えました
        Shigoto ga owarimashita. *Shigoto ga oemashita. (* = ungrammatical)
        The work is finished.

        仕事を終わりました。/ 仕事を終えました
        Shigoto o owarimashita. / Shigoto o oemashita.
        I finished my work.”

        I think there is a typo in this too, but apart from that, it says I can use owaru as a transitiv Verb in informal situations. Would you agree?

        2. The thing with owaru as a suffix is, all my grammars say that it becomes a transitive verb when you combine it with a transitive verb. So 見終わる or 読み終わる would be 他動詞 and could be used with を. As an example, I found a youtube learning video that also teaches verb+owaru as transitive: So not only do all grammar- and textbooks as well as the online lessons I could find teach を+verb+owaru, but also the combination verb+oeru is not taught at all in any textbook or grammar, and I can’t find a lesson for it on the internet either.
        However, if I google both versions, the version with wo+verb+oeru is used 10 times more often than wo+verb+owaru. Thats why I’m at an impasse here, everybody teaches verb+owaru, but rather uses verb+oeru.

        Meanwhile I asked my Japanese Teacher and another native Japanese speaker, and they where both indecisive. My teacher would prefer verb+oeru in my sentence, but couldn’t say why or that verb+owaru is actually wrong. The other person finds both equally right. So not much help there. And now you are saying that it’s wrong… I’m lost. !ase! 

        • Maggie says:

          Ahh now I see your confusion.
          You are right. There are cases that we use 終わる as “a transitive verb” 仕事を終わる/仕事を終える
          We also say,

          The difference is
          終わる= you finish it naturally (When certain time passes, you eventually finish doing something)
          終える = you finish something intentionally

          Also the main reason why your original sentence looks unnatural is you used 見終わる with “ことに決めた”
          Even if 終わる can be used as a transitive verb, 見終わる isn’t volitional. You happen to finish watching /seeing something so you can’t decide it.

  76. hana says:

    Hi Maggie!

    Thanks for all your help so far and hope you and Yukari are doing well!

    I have a question about the following sentence…Basically the student council president is talking to a scholarship student.


    The reason I find this strange is because of the itadaku that suddenly switches viewpoint to the council president, since I’m guessing 優待性としての自覚を持って is referring to the scholarship student.

    Am I misinterpreting something here? Is it ok to suddenly switch viewpoints mid-sentence? Unless you can apply 謙譲語 to the scholarship student too, but I don’t think so…

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Hana! We are good, thank you! :)

      This is the structure

      Y is talking to X

      (X に)〜することを期待する
      (X に)〜していただくことを期待する
      = Y expects X to do do something

      In this case
      Y = the speaker (I guess the school or the student council president)
      X = the listener (an honor student)

      The student council president expects scholarship students to study hard being fully aware of their responsibility as an honor student

      • hana says:

        Thank you Maggie.

        I read your structure, and I think I got it. So the sentence can be implicitly divided like this:


        Something like that?

        Glad to hear you and Yukari are doing well!

        • Maggie says:


          Yes, you got it. :)

          • hana says:

            Thank you Maggie, I appreciate your time! boucingheart!

          • Maggie says:


            You’re very welcome, Hana. :)

          • hana says:

            I will just do a short follow up here so I don’t take up too much space…

            法律上,相手の仕事を強制的に辞めさせることはできません。 make the person quit their job?

            ひとりの国家公務員を強制的に辞めさせるかどうか・・・ forcibly make him quit?

            It appears you don’t need to have 仕事 or similar before 辞めさせる, but can also use “公務員を強制的に辞めさせる”? I guess for higher focus on the actual person?

            Sorry for the trouble!

          • Maggie says:


            Hi Hana,
            法律上,相手の仕事を強制的に辞めさせることはできません。 make the person quit their job? →Yes
            ひとりの国家公務員を強制的に辞めさせるかどうか・・・ forcibly make him quit?→Yes

            仕事を辞める = to quit one’s job
            仕事を辞めさせる= to make someone quit their job
            The object of 辞める/辞めさせる is one’s job.

            公務員が辞める= a civil servant will quit.
            公務員を辞めさせる= to make a/one civil servant quit / to fire a civil servant.

            The object of 辞める/辞めさせる is a/one civil servant.

          • hana says:

            Thanks Maggie!

            So it sounds like something similar to:

            「公務員が走る」 -> 公務員が辞める
            「公務員を走らせる」 -> 公務員を辞めさせる

            辞める is functioning like a 自動詞, something in that sense?

          • Maggie says:

            Yes, so it may be easier for you to know
            辞める means 1) to quit (something) 2) resign /retire

        • hana says:

          Thanks Maggie, I will remember that. Causatives always make me feel like I’m reading alien script…

          Please have a nice weekend! !ohisama!

          • Maggie says:


            Haha, I feel the same way when I translate Japanese causative sentences in English. They just don’t sound natural.
            Have a nice weekend,too!

  77. says:

    Good day dear Maggie sensei. 
    はい、元気でした。I am not really sure if I will you でした or です to answer this particular question. Please correct me if I am wrong.
    Thank you so much for clarifying it to me.


    I would like ask about the train. Is it:

    a. The train exited from ハチ公口 then it turned left, then they saw the poster. (exited then went)

    b. After the train exited from ハチ公口 they saw the poster through the left side window of the train. (行った just describe the direction of 出て and the poster is located at their (speaker/s) left side).
    Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

    • Maggie says:


      The subject of 出る is not a train, it is you/we/or people in general
      When you leave the exist “Hachikou guchi”, at Shibuya Station and turn left, you will see the huge poster.

      • obakasan000 says:

        Good evening dear Maggie sensei.

        I would like to ask something about 可能系.
        I normally see this pattern [を+可能系+名詞] = Modifying the Noun.

        But occasionally I see [名詞+を+可能系]) (past tense only)
        in blog updates and songs:


        Is there by any chance を+可能系 is used when:

        a. To give the listener the impression that the potential verb that has been used with を is an action intentionally done by the doer/noun and it is not the same with は・が where in は・が only describe what is doable/ not doable to/for the doer/noun.

        b. It just so happened, and there limited potential verbs that use を
        (fixed expression)

        c. The blog update is grammatically wrong.
        Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

        • Maggie says:


          You usually use a particle が for 可能形 but certain cases you use を
          (*But you use を when you say verb + ことができる)


          →景色が見える (景色を見ることができる*)

          But when you modify a noun, you see them both, が/を

          In my opinion, the difference is subtle but
          when you stress what comes before the particle, you use が (in this case 空間 and 景色)
          and when you stress the action itself (空間を感じること/景色を見ること) you use, を.

          • obakasan000 says:

            Good day dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much for clarifying it for me.

            My question for today is:

            Why didn’t I check in on him a little bit sooner…
            (The update was all about her dog who died when she was away.)

            This is the first time I have encountered 行ってやる.
            I would like to ask if this would mean “to go and do something else”? Or it has another meaning?
            Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

          • Maggie says:


            Hi orikousan000. :)

            In that case 行ってやる doesn’t mean “to go and do something”. It means “to go for someone’s sake.” (In this case to go see a dog)
            You know the expression 〜てあげる= to do something for someone.
            Ex. XはYに日本語を教えてあげる
            = X teachers Y Japanese.
            あげる is to do something nice for someone. (But the speaker is superior to the receiver)

            verb てやる is similar to てあげる but you usually use this form for much lower position, one’s children or pets.

  78. Courtney says:

    Hi Maggie sensei! !heartsippai! I feel like I haven’t talked you in forever!!! I miss you! lol so quick question… what is a 大和撫子? I was called that by a Japanese friend but he couldn’t explain it in English well.

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Courtney! You can always talk to me here or on Twitter. :)
      大和撫子(yamato nadeshiko)
      literal meaning
      大和= ancient name of Japan
      撫子= nadeshiko= a name of a flower (dianthus)
      It is an old fashioned word which refers to a pure and beautiful traditional Japanese woman.

      • Courtney says:

        Lol I know I think I talk to you more on twitter but I feel like I haven’t done so in awhile ;)

        Wow hmmmm, thanks for the explanation! Never heard of this word but the fact that you say it’s an old fashioned word makes sense why lol…see you on twitter! :wink:

  79. Marianne says:

    Hello again, Maggie sensei〜!久しぶりですね!



    あと、あの文に「なる」ってどういう意味ですか? どうして「のむばかりのこと」じゃないですか?

  80. Kano says:

    Hello, Maggie sensei, sorry to bother you but I’m having a trouble identifying this >.<. Is there a way that “書けるか!” is negative? Since the context is someone commanding to another person to write something; but the other person doesn't want to, and even throws the paper (it's not serious but for the sake of comedy, because they're embarrassed to do that) while saying this. So it really confuses me…

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Kano,
      That means “There is NO WAY that I can write/I will write that!”
      It is a blunt / strong expression.

      There is no way! I can’t/I won’t do ~
      Ex. そんなことできるか!There is no way to do that/I can’t do that. There is no way!
      Ex. そんなことわかるか! There is no way to understand such a thing.

  81. Jasmine says:

    It worked, sensei! :-D I’m sorry, please help me out just a bit more (they’re simple!)
    4. When saying ‘Can you meet Mickey Mouse at Disneyland?’ is it ディズニーランドでミッキーマウスと会いたいです?
    5. For このペンは、書きにくいです isn’t it このペンで (because you’re using the pen?) instead of このペンは?
    6. For 旅行はしてない! I don’t get the してない bit? It’s てform with ない added? And does the は have to be there?
    7. Is it 何を呼んでもいいですか? or なにて呼んだらいいですか? because my native Japanese friend said the first one is wrong and the second one is the correct one but my teacher had taught me that one?
    Thank you so much Maggie sensei! そいして、明けましておめでとう!

    • Maggie says:


      4. 会いたい means “Do you want to see/Would like to see (Mickey Mouse)?”
      Can you ~ means “ミッキーマウスに会える(かな)?・会えますか?”

      5. このペンは、書きにくいです
      When you describe what kind of pen it is, you use a subject marker.
      This pen is (a pen which is)hard to write with.
      But you can also say
      = It is hard to write with this pen.

      6. してない is a casual contraction of “していない”. We often drop “い” in conversation. so していない・してない means “haven’t done”
      旅行はしていない・旅行はしてない means “I haven’t traveled.”

      You use “は” to show the contrast/emphasizing.

      7. You wanted to say “How should I call you?” Then, 何と呼んだらいいですか?(casual 何て(なんて)呼んだらいいですか?)
      Call someone ~~~ = Someoneを~~~と呼ぶ

      Ex. Call me Maggie = 私をマギーと呼んで下さい。
      This と means “as”


      When you use を with 呼ぶ
      When you call something/someone as an object.

      Ex. Call an ambulance car.

      Hope this helps.
      And 明けましておめでとう!

      • Jasmine says:

        Maggie sensei, thank you so much!I’m so sorry but I have more questions;
        1.I was just wondering why 何を呼んでもいいですか? is wrong?
        2. I don’t get why people sometimes use と instead of に?
        e.g ジョンに会いたい。
        I always thought it was と? 8-O
        Thank you so much!

        • Maggie says:


          1. How should I call someone/something? is 何と呼んだら(or どう呼んだら)いいですか。

          This is how it works.

          I call Tom. : 私はトムを呼びます。
          Tom is an object so you use を

          Who are you calling? in Japanese is

          I call him Tom : 私は彼をトムと呼びます。
          I call him ( “as”) Tom. (as = と)

          How do you call him?

          The object is 彼

          What should I call him?
          彼をなんと(or どう)呼んだらいい?

          • 天人 says:

            Hello Jasmine,

            に implies a one-direction action (me => someone, or someone => me).
            と implies a two-direction action (me someone).

            ~に合う implies that the speaker meets someone accidentally ==> let’s say I was in a department store and I met there accidentally Maggie.
            ~と合う implies that the speaker and someone both agreed to meet each other ==> let’s say I invited Maggie for a romantic dinner in a restaurant and we met there.
            人に話す implies that only one person talks to another one.
            人と話す implies that both person talk to each other.

            Therefore 人に結婚する is wrong, because 結婚 is an action which involves both sides.


          • Maggie says:



  82. Jasmine says:

    Sorry for the previous comment, sensei! I have been trying to ask some questions for a few days and I couldn’t post them, but one word worked? :cry: 来年私は高校二年生になるから、緊張します。 :cry:
    1. For 迷ちゃう or 風邪をひちゃうぞ!Where does the ちゃう come from?
    2. For かどうか eg 朝ごはんを食べるかどうか分かりません why do they use 分かりません instead of 知りません when it’s ‘don’t know whether’ not ‘don’t understand whether’?
    3. For 明日5時に家を出るので、早くねたほうがいいです why did they use を instead of に after 家?
    I’m afraid these won’t post again, so I will try just these first. :)

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Jasmine! 今、高校一年生で日本語を勉強しているんですね。すごいなあ。
      1. 迷ちゃう or 風邪をひちゃうぞ →It should be 迷っちゃう・風邪をひいちゃう
      Anyway ちゃう is a casual contraction of てしまう
      Please check my ちゃう lesson.

      2. 知る(shiru) means “to know” and わかる(=wakaru) has two meanings “to understand/comprehend”and “to know”
      I know they are both “to know” in English but there is a difference.
      You use わかる(=wakaru) when something is/isn’t clear.
      Now you mentioned, a lot of people get confused with this usage so I will make a lesson for you on this subject sometime.
      Please wait for the detailed explanation.

      3. 家を出る

      Sometimes you use a particle with 出る
      (place)から出る= leave “from” (place)

      布団から出る= get out of the bed

      but when you leave some place, you think the place as an object so you need an object marker.

      • Jasmine says:

        Hello sensei, thank you so much!!
        I just had some issues…
        – I understand that 知る is to know and 分かる is to understand, so I was just wondering why they use 分かる for かどうか when the translation is ‘don’t KNOW whether or not’, not ‘don’t UNDERSTAND whether or not’?
        – Does that mean instead of saying 家に出る you can say 家を出る?

        • Maggie says:


          Hi Jasmine,
          As I mentioned in my previous comment わかる has two meanings.
          1) to understand 2) to know
          2) not understand 2) not to know/ not sure

          So 何時に家を出るかわからない
          This わからない is the usage 2) not to know/ not to sure

  83. Inka says:

    I need your help once more.
    I have old Japanese friend who I have been writing with trough e-mails and letters. He is a very kind old man and sends me often 新聞切り抜く,but the problem is that I can’t keep up with reading them all,because he sends them so often. Because he is an older Japanese person,I don’t know how to politely say that I am happy ,but that can’t keep up with reading all the 新聞切り抜く. Have you an idea what I can write?


    • Maggie says:


      Hi Inka,

      Hmm I can tell he is a very nice person.
      He is trying to help you and please you. And I understand you don’t want to hurt his feelings.
      Basically what do you want him to do?
      Stop sending you the new papers clips or he can still send them to you but a fewer clips will be better?

      • Inka says:

        He can still send them ,but not so often.

        • Maggie says:


          It is difficult not to hurt his feelings.
          I would say you can write how much you appreciate his work and it is useful to study them first.
          And tell him you still have lots of articles that you haven’t read because it takes a long time to read one article.
          Since you don’t want to trouble him, you will let him now when you finish reading what you have.


          • Inka says:

            Thank you!It sounds great.You really helped me out, I was afraid to write something by myself,because it could have hurt his feelings a lot.Thank you.


          • Maggie says:


            You’re welcome!
            I usually don’t write a letter or translation here but this time is an exception. :)

  84. Inka says:

    久しぶりMaggie先生! !happyface! 明けましておめでとうございます。 :pika:

    今度またMaggie先生に頼みたいことがあります。 学校に去年と同じように自由に決めたテーマで観察プロジェクトを書いて、発表しなければならないです。今年抹茶について書いてつもりです。日本人の意見も必要なので、アンケートを作って多くの日本人に答えてもらいたいんです。Maggie先生もアンケートを答えていただけると助かります。


    It would be great if you could ask your Japanese friends to fill out this questionnaire as well.


    • Maggie says:



      1. はい好きです。
      2. 抹茶は年に1度位しか飲みません。抹茶を使ったお菓子はよく食べます。

      3. 抹茶チョコ❤

      4. ありません。

      5. 料理には使いません。


      • Inka says:




        • Maggie says:


          You usually use 捕える when you catch some living things, animal or people (Ex. arresting 犯人=han’nin = criminal / hold down an animal, etc.) and you use 捉える when you capture, perceive or grasp something intangible, such as ideas, heart, image, etc.

  85. sunamiassault says:

    I have a feeling the answer might already be on this website, but I searched the website and I didn’t find it…
    In the following phrases
    Why is past tense used (it is talking about the present lack of concern right?)? I guess this really is a question about verb form + koto and/or the tricky usage of 知る

    • Maggie says:


      Hello, sunamiassault!
      知ったことか (casual/blunt 知ったこっちゃねえぜ)means “It has nothing to do with me”.
      It is an expression (私には関係のないこと)and it is not actually a past tense.

    • 天人 says:

      Hello sunamiassault,
      知ったこっちゃねぇぜ is a very strong (rude) expression and it means “I don’t give a shit / fuck”. It can be also translated as “it’s none of your business”, “it’s not my problem”, or – like Maggie said – “It has nothing to do with me”.
      It is used in past because it’s a fixed expression. Just don’t think about it.


  86. Palidor says:

    マギー先生とゆかり先生、新年明けましておめでとうございます!! May 2016 be filled with lots of love and happiness. boucingheart! !niconico! 

    • @Palidor


      • Palidor says:

        マギー先生、レッスンのアイデアがありますよ。 日本の法律制度を説明してくれませんか。 珍しいですが、私は弁護士なので、他の国の法律制度に興味がありますよ。 :lol:

        • Maggie says:



          • Palidor says:

            ああ、なるほど。 大抵、人々は法律制度に興味がないと思います。 私は少しおかしいですね。 :mrgreen:

          • Maggie says:



  87. Zetsuboumanadeshi says:

    !formingheart3! :maggie-small: boucingheart!
    マギー先生とゆかり様にとって元気で幸多き年となりますように。昨年はいつも辛抱強くお世話になってありがとうございます。本年もさらに楽しいレッスンをいただけるといんですね。 !school!

    • Maggie says:


      新しい年がZetsuboumanadeshiにとってすばらしい年になります様に! :maggie-small: boucingheart! !star!

  88. ポコ says:



    ”Take care of him. He/It’s not important.” そう訳していましたが何か変だと思います。「大事はない」は他の意味がありますか。あると英語でどう訳しますか。

    • Maggie says:

      It( injury, wound, cut.etc ) is not a big deal./ He is fine.

  89. amaru says:

    dear maggie-sensei,

    i have been watching a lot of japanese vines, which are basically just short funny videos. a lot of the people have been saying a certain phrase, ha nan chi, i believe? what does this mean? i think it has to do with speaking because of hanashimasuka and such, but could you help me? i have tried looking it up to no avail.

  90. Maggie says:

    Hi everyone!
    Sorry that our site has been down for a week due to technical problem.
    Obviously Maggie Sensei’s site has too many lessons but we will try to fix this problem this afternoon trying to make it work smoother than before. You can tentatively use this site this until 2:00 pm today (Japan time)
    Thank you for your patience. :maggie-small:

  91. obakasan000 says:

    good morning dear Maggie sensei.
    Thank you so much.

    My questions for today are:

    どうも~( ̄▽ ̄)筋肉の子です( ̄^ ̄)ゞ笑

    I would like to ask, who saw the girls and heard their conversation?
    a. the speaker
    b. 知り合いの人


    I would like to ask if the と in 19回と is the conditional と or the “and/with” と?

    Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

    • Maggie says:


      1. It should be b)
      2. Besides quoting functions, you use と to emphasizes the word what comes before.


      • obakasan000 says:

        Good evening dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much for answering my questions.
        It feels like entering a newly renovated classroom. I’m really glad the site is up again.

        I would like to ask if someone has already asked for a lesson about the difference between 風 and 感じ. It seems like いい感じ、こんな感じ、そんな風に、are very common. But if the explanation can be done here that is totally fine with me. .n_n.
        Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

        • Maggie says:


          Welcome back to Maggie’s room. I am happy that we could use this space again.
          OK, you are not the first person who asked me how to use 風 and 感じ.
          Will add them to the request list.

          Please wait the lesson patiently. :)

          • obakasan000 says:

            Good day dear Maggie sensei.
            Thank you for telling me.

            My questions for today are:
            Sorry. I forgot to reply to your Good morning Tweet.
            (tweeter related lesson)

            This is the first time I have seen 忘れてた and the sentence obviously doesn’t mean “I used to forget”.

            I would like to ask why 忘れた was not used here?


            I would like to ask which interpretation is more precise about the中 part.

            a. The time when the picture was sent was during the event.

            b. イベント中 modified the picture and it will become:
            “A picture taken during the event” and the time when the picture was sent is unclear.

            c. A picture of, fireworks that have been launched during the festival.
            (イベント中 modified サプライズで打ち上がった花火) And the time when the picture was sent is unclear.
            Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

          • Maggie says:


            Hello! Genki deshitaka?

            1. 忘れてた is a casual contraction of 忘れていた
            The English translation of 忘れた and 忘れていた could be both “I forgot” but to be precise,
            忘れた is simply “I forgot” (talking about some particular point of time) and 忘れていた is I have been forgotten (ている・ていた describe some state)

            2. c

  92. Ivan says:

    Maggie sensei, i am having problems with double particles. i dont know how to use them.
    here is the double particles i remember seeing: とは、には、では、かは、のは、への、かを、での、にも、までに、のか.
    i even saw a triple one のかを

    and one more doubt why か is in the middle of the phrase?
    あたしは今何をしてよいかわからない。 8-O

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Ivan,
      I’m sorry but I can’t explain the whole difference here. But I will make a lesson on か for you sometime and try to explain the combination with other particle. (かは、かを、のか、のかは、のかを)

  93. 天人 says:

    I cannot post here, what’s going on? ;_____;

    • 天人 says:

      Ok, now it’s working again <3 So, ad rem.

      Hi Maggie! I need your assistance ^w^
      Today I've learned everything about まで, and I got some easy questions for you.

      My question is, if there's a difference between これまで、ここまで and そこまで? Because I think they can be used interchangeably, like:
      [You've gone so far, so why not all the way?]

      The generally question is, when can you used ここまで、 そこまで、 これまで interchangeably and when not?

      Some additional questions.

      How would you say: "So far so good, but…"
      a) そこまではいいのだが…
      b) ここまではいいのだが…
      c) 今まではいいのだが…
      d) これまでいいのだが…
      Is there a difference between a, b, c, d?

      How would you say: "You are the right so far."?
      a) そこまでは君が正しい。
      b) ここまでは君が正しい。
      c) これまでは君が正しい。
      d) 今までは君が正しい。
      Is there a difference between a, b, c, d?

      How would you say: "It's enough for today."?
      a) 今日はここまでだ。
      b) 今日はこれまでだ。
      c) 今日はそこまでだ。
      Is there a difference between a, b, c?

      How would you say: "There have been no problems so far."?
      a) これまでに何の問題もない。
      b) これまでで何の問題もない。
      c) これまで何の問題もない。
      Is there a difference between a, b, c (までに、 までで and まで)?

      How would you say: "I have never been hospitalized."?
      a) 私はこれまで入院したことはない。
      b) 私はこれまでに入院したことはない。
      c) 私はこれまでで入院したことはない。
      Is there a difference between a, b, c (までに、 までで and まで)?


      • Maggie says:

        Actually this is hard to explain but I will try.

        1) How would you say: “So far so good, but…”
        a) そこまではいいのだが…
        b) ここまではいいのだが…
        c) 今まではいいのだが…
        d) これまでいいのだが…
        Is there a difference between a, b, c, d?

        →The most common way to say is 今のところいいが・今のところはいいが.. but could be a) b) c)
        I will explain the difference below.

        2) How would you say: “You are the right so far.”?
        a) そこまでは君が正しい。
        b) ここまでは君が正しい。
        c) これまでは君が正しい。
        d) 今までは君が正しい。
        Is there a difference between a, b, c, d?

        →You are right so far
        Could be all of them.

        The difference
        そこ ここ This is hard to explain but if you see the all the series of events “visually”, you use そこ・ここ, →at this point, at that point
        If the speaker describes the event as if it is happening right now, use ここ.
        (Usually when a speaker A is talking about something, A refers to the event with ここ and the listener B refers to it with そこ. But if the listener B feels the event is happening right there uses ここ)

        これまで/ 今まで If you see the events in a time line, you use これまで/ 今まで →up to now, until now
        They mean the same but 今まで slightly emphasizes “this moment/now” more.

        3) How would you say: “It’s enough for today.”?
        a) 今日はここまでだ。
        b) 今日はこれまでだ。
        c) 今日はそこまでだ。
        Is there a difference between a, b, c?

        →I would say a) or b)
        If a speaker finishes his/her work, ここまで. And if a speaker is talking to someone and refers to a distant work, そこまで
        これまでだ is not natural.

        4) How would you say: “There have been no problems so far.”?
        a) これまでに何の問題もない。
        b) これまでで何の問題もない。
        c) これまで何の問題もない。

        →c) or ここまで何の問題もない

        I would use a) and b) because of the particle, に・で

        You say これまでに when you emphasize “until now”
        Ex. これまでに何も問題がなかったのにどうしてこんなことになったんだろう。

        5) How would you say: “I have never been hospitalized.”?
        a) 私はこれまで入院したことはない。
        b) 私はこれまでに入院したことはない。
        c) 私はこれまでで入院したことはない。
        Is there a difference between a, b, c (までに、 までで and まで)?

        →a) or 今まで for the same reason above.

        If you had never hospitalized before but now you are, you could say

  94. manik says:

    Hi maggie sensei,
    Um maggie sensei do you know about monbugakusho?
    I have a request, would like to make some test of monbugakusho? I want to learn about it…
    Thank you…

  95. Triet Dao says:

    Hello Maggie sensei.

    Please help me to tell the difference in using the “納得” and “説得”. I found they seem to have the same meaning…

    Thank you sensei

    Triet Dao

    • Maggie says:

      @Triet Dao

      Hello Triet Dao,

      納得する = to fully understand, to agree
      説得する= to convince someone, to persuade

      • Triet Dao says:

        Thank you sensei,

        However, may I use settoku instead of nattoku in this sentence ?

        He convinced us of her innocence.

        Best regards. Triet Dao

        • Maggie says:

          @Triet Dao

          Because it is used in a causative form. ~ saseru
          納得させる= make someone understand/ agree →to persuade/to convince someone

          • Triet Dao says:

            Many thanks sensei, now it’s clear for me.

            By the way, I am confusing when it comes to pick the right kotoba for the word “situation/circumstance” from 3 of the following words:
            調子, 都合 and 様子.

            Please help me to clarify each of them so that I can translate it right the sentence “everyone has their own situations in life”

            Thank you very much sensei.
            ( website is really useful to me.深謝)

            Triet Dao

          • Maggie says:

            @Triet Dao

            調子 is condition
            都合 is convenience
            様子 is the state, appearance, how things go, look

            “everyone has their own situations in life”
            I would use 立場 for that kind of situation.

  96. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. I think it has been awhile since I last asked a question so I have managed to gather heaps of questions! Anyway, it is nice to be speaking (well, asking) you stuff again! XD. Anyway, I only have one question today, please help me like always! XD

    1. What is the difference between 使用 and 利用? If you add suru to them they mean to utilize and to make use of respectively (Or at least as far as I know) so are they different? Would there be any situations where one would be preferred over the other?

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hi there. Ohisashiburi!

      使用 is used when you use some tools, equipment, places.

      Ex. トイレは使用中です。
      Ex. 運転中は携帯電話使用禁止。

      利用 used for general service, transportation, facilities. take advantage of some opportunity, make use of something
      Ex. 地下鉄を利用する
      Ex. 会員だけが利用できるサービス
      Ex. この機会を利用してどこかに行きたい。

  97. 天人 says:

    お帰りなさい! boucingheart!

  98. Yabz says:

    Hi! I was wondering if there ever is going to be a MaggieSensei phone app? I love your “daily expressions” on twitter!

    • Maggie says:


      Hello Yabz
      Thank you for following me on Twitter and I am very happy to hear you enjoy my tweets.
      I would looove to have a phone app. I guess I have to study a lot to make one. :)

  99. hana says:

    So I did some checking on Daijirin and it does seem that this entry

〔準体助詞「の」に格助詞「に」が付いたもの〕2nd definition “…である場合に。…している際に” seems like a plausible candidate for the bucket sentence. Something like the “のに気付いた” expression I guess?

    Am I on to something here? Thanks again!

  100. hana says:

    Hi Maggie! I read your comment about being gone for about a week, please enjoy yourself! You can answer this whenever you are free.

    So two people are holding the same bucket of water, each hand on one side, and the bucket starts to tilt. This sentence follows:


    This のに is really confusing and I don’t really get its meaning, considering what comes after. What does this mean? Thanks!

    • 天人 says:

      Hello Hana,
      のに [or (の) には] in this sentence implies a purpose / utility / use and it means: to do / in order to do.


    • Maggie says:


      Hi hana,
      Sorry for the late reply.
      Where did you see the sentence?
      It looks like a sentence that someone is trying to translate it in Japanese….
      The most natural way to say that sentence is
      I wouldn’t use のに

      You use のに

      Ex. バケツの水が飛び散るのに気がつかなかった。(object marker)
      Ex. 水を運ぶのにバケツを使う (purpose/ in order to)
      Ex. 汚いのに掃除をしない。(Even if, even though)

      • hana says:

        Hi Maggie,

        Thanks 天人 and Maggie.

        Don’t worry about the late replies I do not mind at all.

        Um so I got the full sentence, it is from a Japanese interactive novel so I do not think it was translated to Japanese?


        Is the usage of のに here still strange you think?

  101. Oli says:

    Dear Maggie-sensei,

    Recently, my Japanese friend just passed away and I was thinking of writing a letter to her parents. My Japanese is very poor, could you please help me with the translation as I am afraid that it might sound rude? :cryingfirl: :cryingfirl:

    Thank you very much! 手伝ってください。お願いします、マーギー先生!

    • Maggie says:


      I am sorry to hear about your friend. I don’t do the translation here but I will help you proofread your message. (Have to be short though.)
      You don’t have to write the name of your friend here but post a couple of sentences in English and Japanese.

  102. Maggie says:

    Hi everyone! Welcome to Maggie’s Room! こんにちは、みなさん、マギーの部屋へようこそ!
    I will be gone for a week and I won’t be able to answer (or activate your questions) for a week. 今日から1週間お休みを頂きますので、この間、皆さんの質問(を掲載したり)には答えることができません。
    Thank you!! いつもありがとう! :maggie-small:

  103. Shen says:

    Hello Maggie Sensei.. I need help if at all possible.

    I was correcting a person who normally speaks Japanese in his english on Language 8. However he had asked me a question which I wasn’t sure how to answer without being complicated, so I wanted to translate the sentence into Japanese so it’d be understandable. I don’t want to post this to avoid confusing further :/

    The sentence is: There may be more mistakes but I could not find them so it’s readable as it is. I had attempted to translate it but I’m pretty sure it is incorrect. The question was regarding what as it is means. However I don’t know the Japanese equivalent.



    Thank you. I tried!

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Shen,
      Your sentence is good.

      The direct translation is まだ間違いがあるかもしれませんが、これ以上は見つけることができないのでこのままで読んでわかると思います。but it doesn’t sound natural.


  104. mona says:

    こんにちは。マギー先生 :w:
    この文章の翻訳ですが{ I am not that person whom I thought I was }
    ありがとうございます。 !ohisama!

    • Maggie says:


      こんにちは、 mona!
      That person is not me as I thought. になってしまうので意味がわからない文章になります。
      私は自分が思っていたような人(or 人間)ではない。

  105. Courtney says:

    MAGGIE SENSEI!!!!!!!!! So I have a somewhat long question, well…it’s too long for twitter but I’m having difficulty understanding にしろ does it mean something like to make use of something for something? like in the sentence どういう形にしろいったん考えよう… would it be something like… I should think of what kind of style to make use of for the time being….that’s how I’m understanding it but I’m not quite sure…your assistance will be much appreciated boucingheart!

    • Maggie says:


      COURTNEEEEEEY!!!!! Hi! :)

      1) ~ + にしろ: ever (whatever, whichever,)

      どういう形にしろ  whatever way it is..
      Ex. 誰にしろ whoever it is
      Ex. なんにしろ whatever it is
      Ex. どんな色にしろ whatever color it is

      2) A+ にしろ+B + にしろ:whether A or B (or not)

      = Inu ni shiro neko ni shiro doubutsu wa nanndemo kawaii.
      Whether a dog or a cat, I love all the animals.

      = Iku ni shiro, ikanai ni shiro, hayaku kimete hoshii.
      = Whether you are going or not, I want you to decide soon.

  106. obakasan000 says:

    good day dear Maggie sensei.

    Thank you so much. Carefully explained as always.
    I love you too, dear Maggie sensei. .n_n.
    Oh, I am so sorry about that, it was just… out of excitement.


    My questions for today are:
    I would like to ask if it is:
    a. 滑舌よく + 堂々と
    b. 滑舌 + よく堂々と
    c. Or it is really 滑舌よく堂々と (fixed expression)

    矢島様 is telling things about 千聖 and then, this part:


    Given translation is:

    On variety shows as well,
    I think she’s always struggling with nervousness,
    but thanks to Chisato….

    Based on my understanding, 矢島様 is the one is always having a hard time dealing with nervousness even in variety shows, and she is thanking 千聖

    So I would like to ask if it is:

    a. I think she’s (千聖) always struggling with nervousness
    b. 矢島様 is the one is always having a hard time dealing with nervousness even in variety shows
    c. None of the above.


    Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei..

    • Maggie says:


      a. 滑舌よく + 堂々と→modifies 話す

      Correct →a.I think she’s (千聖) always struggling with nervousness

      Thank you for understanding.
      I love you more❤

      Yes, you are right.

      • obakasan000 says:

        Good day dear maggie sensei.
        Hope you had a great time .n_n.

        My questions for today are:

        I would like to ask regarding [ないかな??]
        I don’t know if I will interpret this as:

        a. [I -hope- I have one] (based on かな lesson)

        b. [I -think- I have (one/s)]
        (based on the literal translation: “I wonder if I don’t have”)

        In sentences like: I would like all of us to [verb]
        which one is correct?
        てほしい or たい form?

        Thank you in advance dear Maggie sensei.

        • Maggie says:


          1. This かな is
          to ask a question in a subtle way (colloquial)

          Do you have any songs that you always sing?

          2. It should be たい because it includes yourself.

          • says:

            Good evening dear Maggie sensei.
            Thank you so much.
            As continuation of my question about “I want all of us”:

            1. 切磋琢磨し合って、ハロー!プロジェクト全体で盛り上がって行きたいですね
            I don’t know if I will interpret this as:

            a. all of us in hello project want to work hard together as one and, liven things up.

            b. I want all of us in hello project to work hard together and, liven things up.
            2.みんなで一緒に日本に行きたい。= I would like to go to japan (together) with everyone.
            If I will remove, 一緒, would it still clearly give the meaning of “together with” or there is a chance that it can be also give a meaning of “all of us want to”?

            Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

          • Maggie says:


            1. b) is close.

            2. みんなで日本に行きたい
            The meaning won’t change so much. 一緒に just emphasizes”together”.

  107. Gallus says:



    数日前にワンパンマンというアニメを見ていて、上の文を読みました。でもよく分かりません。 『イメージが全く湧かない』は、どいう意味ですか。いろいろなサイトで質問を聞いたのに、どこにも答えを見つけませんでした。。
    どうして答えを見つけるのがこんなに難しいのでしょうか。知りたいのは、フレーズかどうかです。 使い方を教えてくれませんか。 本当にありがとうございます。

    間違ったら、すみません。 練習していただけなのです。

    • Maggie says:


      イメージが湧くはto get some inspirationが近いかなって思います。

    • 天人 says:

      「湧く」の意味は物事、感情などが生じるのです。(=things suddenly appear, or emotions / feelings / [mental] images come suddenly up or out, or something produces some kind of emotions / feelings / images, etc.)


      PS 「いろいろなサイトで質問を聞いたのに、どこにも答えを見つけませんでした。どうして答えを見つけるのがこんなに難しいのでしょうか」 ==> 実は、難しいどころかね。ここで質問を出しさえすればよかったのにな~。これからどうすりゃいいかわかるよね!日本語の質問なら、マギー先生のサイトこそだ!

  108. chaos_prinz says:

    こんにちは、マギー先生!I kinda got confused with some grammar (と言う). I know that this grammar has lots of usages.
    Anyway, my question i how to repeat what someone else has just said. For example:
    A: I’m studying Japanese by myself,
    B: Wow, really? You are studying Japanese by yourself? That’s cool!
    Do I use と言う here?
    Or someone said smth, and you are answering with: “Speaking about what you’ve just said bla bla bla I don’t think you’re right”
    I tried to explain with all my best ;;

    • Maggie says:


      OK, when you didn’t hear/you can’t believe what someone said, you can say

      (more casual)

      Did you just said ” ~~~~~ “?
      Or just say
      In this case
      But if you just want to repeat what someone just said,


  109. Jeff says:

    「日本に対しての情熱な感情」 これは正しいですか?
    そして 「私は最初に日本の事興味を持ったのは小さいころにウルトラマンでした。」 文法的に違和感がありまして。お願いいたします先生

    • Maggie says:

      Hi Jeff!
      1)「 情熱な」とは言いません。「情熱的」なら言います。
      2) ただ、情熱は感情の一種なので、両方言う必要はないかと思いますよ。
      「 日本に対する情熱 」でいいと思います。
      それから”対する”という言葉は間違いではありませんが VS・againstというときにも使うので
      「 日本への情熱」でもいいと思いますよ。





  110. 紅月 says:

    勤める 務める

    • Maggie says:


      *銀行員として務める to serve as a banker

      *銀行で仕事する focusing on the fact doing some kind of work at a bank

      *銀行で働く = work at a bank
      *銀行に勤める=work for a bank/ to be employed by a bank and go work there everyday.

  111. Marianne says:


    • Maggie says:




      1)あとに動詞がきて副詞的に使います。(spontaneously) or the same as 「自分で」= by oneself

      自ら進んで後片付けをする= to volunteered to tidy up (on one’s own initiative)
      自ら自分のことをする= 自分で自分のことをする=To take care of oneself spontaneously
      自ら作曲しました。= 自分で作曲しました。= to compose music by oneself

      2) 名詞を修飾する時

      「自分の」one’s/ what you own
      「自らの」one’s own

      Ex. 自らの意思 = one’s own will
      ほぼ、「自分の意思」と同じ意味ですが、「自分の意思」はただ、one’s willですが、「自らの」には”From one’s own”という意味が加わります。自分で決めて何かをするときに使います。


      • Marianne says:


      • 天人 says:

        Maggie, and if the speaker wants to stress up, that he did something all alone, no one helped him, and he is proud of it, should we use: 自分で、自ら、一人で or 自分自身で?

        EX この美味しいケーキは(私が)自分で/自分自身で/一人で/自ら作りました。

        Could you tell me, what’s the difference (nuance) between 自分で/自分自身で/一人で/自ら in this sentence?
        This will be very helpful.

        • Maggie says:


          The most natural way to say that sentence will be

          この美味しいケーキは一人で or 自分で 作りました。

          自ら is used when you volunteer to do something or do something spontaneously and you tend to use it for something big deal which requires you a little bit more effort.
          So you don’t use it for baking a cake.
          unless the person who made a cake is someone superior and you think it is rare for that person to bake a cake.


          When you show your will to do something by yourself or when you express your ability to do something yourself, you use 一人で or 自分で



          You do say 自分自身でやる when you emphasize “oneself” occasionally when you do things for yourself.

          Ex. 自分自身で考える

  112. obakasan000 says:

    Good day dear Maggie sensei.
    thank you so much for clarifications.
    My questions for today are:

    1. if [矢島様は、相変わらずかわいいと思いますI think yajima-sama is cute as always/always cute.],

    How can I say things like, (she/he/they think[s] —- ) using と思います.
    I think even if I will use が instead of は in 矢島様は、相変わらずかわいいと思います, the meaning will change, but it will still show that “I”am the one who does the verb 思います and not 矢島様 (for example).


    I think this sentence would be something like:
    “It still doesn’t feel like there are only few days remaining in 2014”

    But I don’t know how can I interpret – いつにも増して.

    I guess, my guess is:
    [the end of 2014 is drawing near but]..
    I would like to ask for dear Maggie sensei’s English version.


    3. みんなは、今日は何をして遊ぶの?
    From [Japanese verb tense part 1]

    a. is 2nd は serves as the contradicting は? and if I will apply it here,
    this sentence would imply that みんな is going or about to do something different from the previous days?

    b. or is there by any chance that it is alright to have a second は if the previous word is day-related-words such as今日, 明日、来月 etc, and that は just emphasize the day?

    明日彼女は行く – 彼女 is the topic
    明日は行く -明日 is the topic
    彼女は, 明日は行く- 彼女 is the topic but the は of 明日 only emphasizes


    作っていく – to do something and go to somewhere.
    I would like to ask if this also applies to 思い出?
    [I would like to make good memories (and go)]?


    楽しんでくる – would this mean to come to a place while in the state of

    Or 楽しんでくる uses the same principle like in:
    声が聞こえてくる and痛みがなくなってくる where in, the verb kind of approaching the speaker/listener?
    Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

    • Maggie says:



      1. It will be more clear if you add an object.

      If you want to say Yajima-sama thinks she is cute.
      If Yajima-sama thinks someone else is cute,


      2, いつにも増して means いつもよりもずっと
      more than any other years

      3, みんなは、今日は何をして遊ぶの?

      みんなは= subject marker
      今日は= showing contrast /emphasizing “today”

      You can say without は
      今日、何をして遊ぶの?without emphasizing “today”

      Right now I am working on this topic. When we need は with time related word.

      4. 思い出を作っていきたい

      This いく doesn’t mean “to go somewhere” but think this action “making memories” moving towards future.

      5. It is different from 聞こえてくる・痛みがなくなってくる
      楽しんでくる= Going somewhere to have fun (and come back to where the speaker was.)

      • obakasan000 says:

        Good day dear Maggie sensei.
        Thank you much for explaining them to me. Very informative as always. .n_n.
        My questions for today are:


        I would like to ask for this particular sentence:
        Given translation -Prologue and Character Introduction is a lot like Clamping
        But then it seems that というか did not mean [or rather] here. I would like to ask if there is another usage for というか?
        if this is wrong, I would like to ask for dear Maggie sensei’s English version.




        I would like to ask for って事で (interjection).
        I normally take って事で as [anyway], [speaking of which]. But in this particular sentence って事で has been translated as [so].

        I would like to ask the possible meaning of って事で.
        I think ということは・ということです is quite different from ということで/って事で when it comes to usage.

        I have read the lesson about とか andたり.
        but I would like to ask for the use of

        oh by the way, congratulations for having your lessons translated in other languages.
        dear maggie sensei and maam yukari’s teachings are really essential and life changing.

        Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

        • Maggie says:


          というか is “or” “something like”

          It is something like “getting people’s attention” such as prologue or showing character’s faces.



          ということで is used when you conclude what you just talked about.

          In summary, So…



          It is a very colloquial expression that you use when you list up something, something like

          Ex. コーヒーだったりとか紅茶だったらあります。
          = I have something like coffee or black tea.

          Ex. マギーが好きな人はマックスだったりとかするんじゃない?
          = The one you like could be Max, right, Maggie?

          Thank you! We are very fortunate to have all these wonderful people who volunteered to translate our lessons in other languages.

          • obakasan000 says:

            Good evening dear maggie sensei.
            Thank you so much. .n_n.

            My question for today are:

            「これ食べて今日の合コンがんばろっと!」(from 草食系男子 lesson)

            I would like to ask for the long version of がんばろっと?..
            At first I thought it was : 頑張ろうと思っている。 U-verb

            but then, I remembered I had heard something like 任せろってbefore, and the meaning was [leave it to me].. so it made my first guess wrong…

            I also here in lyrics something like:


            ..i would like to ask if is there by any chance, there is tendency to add
            って to o-vowel sound ending?
            「新しい家を買ったんですって?ご主人がんばりましたね。」from 謙遜

            I would like to ask for the complete version of[買ったんですって]
            [The topic was about a video of a dog in minion costume]
            ん?( • ▽ • )って、尻尾振ってるところが、愛らしくて堪らないのよね~\(//∇//)\

            There are two interpretations came into my mind so I would like to ask for dear Maggie sensei’s correction.

            It really felt great
            The part where she was wagging her tail saying “mmm” without knowing that she relieved stress of people despite having such get-up that would make people laugh, was really cute and I couldn’t stand it.

            I assume that そんな風な姿 is something like, ひとを癒させるような姿。Based on でも本当癒されたな


            It really felt great
            The part where she was wagging her tail saying “mmm”while not noticing she was wearing something that was supposed to make people laugh, was really cute and I could not stand it.

            そんな風な姿 refers to 笑われるような格好してる

            even it is known as southern island, actually there are various southern islands.
            Well, if one can picture of a so called [tropical] where people are referred to as “vague”, things like beautiful ocean, coconut, hula-hoop, a never ending summer in a paradise after hearing that word
            (southern island), then that’s right.

            i am not really sure about my understanding so i would like to ask for dear maggie sensei’s english version.


            I would like to ask clarification for 分かりやすいように.
            Thanks to やすい・にくい lesson, i have become aware of やすくなる. But then what if there is いように..

            Would分かりやすいようにメンバーカラーの衣装にしたり mean :
            a. we chose outfits that will represent our member colors
            [in a way that it would be easily understood] by people who don’t know us.


            b. we chose outfits that will represent our member colors
            [so that, our member-colors would be easily known/understood/ recognized] by the people who don’t know us.

            And also is the と of と色々考えました is the quoting と?

            Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

          • Maggie says:


            I really like you and would love to help you but please give me one or two questions at a time.
            「これ食べて今日の合コンがんばろっと!」(from 草食系男子 lesson)

            Oh it is from one of my old lessons.

            〜っと is a casual suffix to show your will in a light way.
            You attach it with a volitional verb. ~ (し)よう・〜ろう・〜おう

            * How to form:
            1) がんばろう
            2) delete う and add っと

            Ex. 勉強しよう→勉強しよっと
            Ex. 帰ろう→帰ろっと

            *任せろって= Leave it to me: 任せろ= imperative form/ Male speech (rough)
            って suffix is added to emphasize your speech or when you make your point.

            Q: って to o-vowel sound ending?
            Not necessary. It attached to an imperative form.

            * する→しろ→しろって
            Ex. 勉強しろって!= I am telling you. Study now!

            *来る→来い(koi) →来いって(=koitte)
            Ex. 早く来いって= I am telling you. Come quickly.

            In more gentle way, you attach って after te-form.

            Ex. 任せてって (both men and women can use)


            This って is a casual form of と when you quote.

            「新しい家を買ったんですって?ご主人がんばりましたね。」from 謙遜

            I would like to ask for the complete version of[買ったんですって]

            Again this って is to quote someone’s speech.

            I heard they bought a new house. Am I right? = 新しい家を買ったんですって

            b) is closer. The dog doesn’t know/ hasn’t noticed that he/she looks like a clown dressed up like that.

            One thing. たまらない doesn’t mean “I can’t stand”. It means “I love ~”
            And I think you know but 癒される means something soothing and makes you feel relaxed.


            Sorry. I don’t do the translation here but the first sentence,


            should be 南の島と言っても right?

            (一言に)〜と言ってもいろいろある is an expression and it means “There are all sorts of ~ ”
            And the last part, ~感じをイメ一ジしてもらえればそれが正解だ

            If you get to picture something like ~~~~, then you would be right.


            a) is close.

            And also is the と of と色々考えました is the quoting と?


  113. Maggie says:

    Hi everyone¡
    Did you know some of my lessons are translated in other languages?
    All these nice people volunteered to translate them and I have been posting on my Facebook page. Just recently Orti translated the following three lessons.

    Maggie Sensei’s lesson in Spanish
    くせに (Mini Lesson)
    あげる くれる もらう

  114. Maggie says:

    Thank you for visiting Maggie’s room.
    I have been receiving a lot of requests to translate personal letters, lyrics, homework, etc.
    Though I love you all and would like to help you, please know that I don’t do the translation here.

  115. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. I was reading an article on TheJapanGuydotcom which was about how to do basic math in Japanese! It was really cool. Anyway, in the comments section a guy named Chris asked:

    How would you say in Japanese “If a shinkansen leaves tokyo at 8:15AM and heads toward Osaka at 250km/hr, if Osaka is 350km/hr away, when does the shinkansen arrive?”

    Now I would normally just scratch my head and move on but today I decided to try and translate this. I already had some basic knowledge on time constructs so after only looking up a few speed terms on Tangorin (Thanks for suggesting that site by the way, it’s awesome!) I came up with:


    (Well, maybe I put kakarimasu before realising that it should be Tsukimasu after awhile)

    1. This is kinda a guess so it’s probably wrong (Please tell me what is wrong if there is anything wrong with it! XD)

    2. Anyway, what I think i learnt is that 時速 means speed measured per hour and that if you put キロ after that, it is understood to mean kilometer and not kilogram. Is this correct?

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hello, The river puppy!
      “If a shinkansen leaves tokyo at 8:15AM and heads toward Osaka at 250km/hr, if Osaka is 350km/hr away, when does the shinkansen arrive?

      新幹線は午前8時15分に、時速200キロ(→時速250km) で東京から大阪へ。東京から大阪まで350キロ(km)だったら、何時”に”着きますか。

      Yes, you say 時速 for the speed per hour
      If you say キロ, it could be “kg” so you can just type “km”
      There are many ways to translate this sentence.

      But I would skip “if” and just say


  116. Lava says:



    • Maggie says:




      もし〜が起きたらそれで今までやっていたことがだめになる” (If something happens, it’s over/all the effort will be in vain 、that’s that) という意味で使います。

      Ex. もし私達がやっていることを誰かに知られたらそれまでだ。/それでおしまいだ。

      Ex. この試合で負けたら、それまでだ。・それでおしまいだ。

      Ex. 時間通りに駅に着かなければそれまでだ・それでおしまいだ。

  117. hana says:

    Greetings Maggie!

    The more I learn the more I forget! I can’t seem to figure out the grammar of this sentence haha.


    I am guessing this means:

    I want somebody to scold me.

    And the “full” sentence would go something like this:


    What is the purpose of に in the above sentence? Is it something like から? Scolding “from” someone?

    Why doesn’t anyone write it like this:


    I am probably missing something obvious here right? What do you think?

    Thank you in advance!

    • Maggie says:

      Hi hana

      How have you been?

      1) 誰かに叱って欲しい。
      I am guessing this means:

      I want somebody to scold me.


      2) 私は誰かに(私のことを)叱って欲しい。
      What is the purpose of に in the above sentence?

      →The function of this に is “by”

      Ex. 父に叱られた = It is a passive sentence “I was scolded by my father” but it will be more natural to translate “My father scolded at me.”

      3) 誰かに叱られて欲しい。

      That means “I hope “this person you are talking about” is scolded by someone.”

      What you want to say is

      • hana says:

        Thank you as always Maggie. I am fine! You are right I forgot about “-tai”.

        So the only difference between these two is that -tai is more um…直接的な言い方?


        • Maggie says:


          Good to hear you are genki. :)
          たい and 欲しい are different. (たい= I want to do ~ / 欲しい= I want someone to do something./ I want something. )

          1) 誰かに叱って欲しい
          2) 誰かに叱られたい

          I don’t see much difference between these two sentences. They both express the speaker’s desire to be scolded by someone.

  118. Courtney says:

    I think my brain is failing me and I need your help lol. My language exchange friend sent me this「若いうちに出来ることやるべきだね!」I am having a hard time understanding this does she mean “You should do it while you are young” or “you are young so you should be able to do it” or am I completely off…I tried putting it in a translator and it didn’t make sense so I broke it down word by word. Am I right?

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Courtney
      OK, let me break this down.

      若いうちに = while you (we) are young
      出来ること= things you (we) can do
      やるべきだ= you (we) should do

      = We (You) should do things we(you) can do while we (you) are young.

      • Courtney says:

        ahhhh I understand! Thanks you’re the best life saver! I know I could’ve asked her to help me as well but I bother her a lot too. Sorry for being so much trouble. Thank you sooo much for always helping me and dealing with me lol. :)

  119. Marianne says:

    ようにって、I hopeという意味があると知ってまけど
    I hopeとか言いたい時に他のもっとため語みたいな言い方ありますか?
    たとえば、仲の良い友達にI hope you pass the testとかI hope everything works outとか言いたい時

    • Maggie says:


      Ex. 試験に受かりますように。

      他に口で言う時には 「〜たらいいね」・「〜ばいいね」という表現も使えます。

  120. Hirviruhtinatar says:

    Hello Maggie-sensei! Thank you for answering, I’m sorry I didn’t notice Maggie’s Room before :oops:

    You said you don’t help with translations, but is it okay if it’s just one sentence?

    I was reading song lyrics and translations and noticed that on one site 少し優しい未来を信じていいんだ was translated “I’ll tell you to believe in a tender future, just for a little” and on another site it was translated “It is definitely okay to believe in a small and kind future”, and I’m wondering which one is right. Does て in 信じて equal command in this case? If so, how does いいんだ work in this? I would have translated it “It’s good to believe in a slightly kinder future” because of いいんだ, as I don’t really understand how いいんだ would work with a command… て-form is often a little puzzling to me because it has so many uses! How would you translate it?

    I’m kind of a beginner in Japanese, and English isn’t my first language either, so I’m sorry if my questions are silly.

    Have a great day!

    • Maggie says:

      @ Hirviruhtinatar
      Hello again. Welcome to Maggie’s room.

      As I said, I won’t do the translation but I can help one or two sentences.

      First when you translate the lyrics or poem, you have to know the previous or following sentences.
      Otherwise you can’t tell who is talking to whom. (We often omit the subject so..)
      You got the lyrics from 未来, right?


      I would say the both translation are acceptable.

      ~ていい has various usages. One of them is to give a permission to someone. (Not a command)
      So you can translate it whether
      It’s OK to do something or You can do something.

      You can believe / It is OK to believe

      Please check my “More about いい(=ii) lesson”

  121. agu says:

    Hi Maggie先生
    Im stuck with one word it is 甘える normally is x はyに甘える like dog is spoiled by me 犬は私に甘えた but then i found 彼氏に上手く甘える方法 and i think it means the way of how to spoil be flirting to your bf and im lost
    I want to say im spoiled by my boyfriend 私は恋人に甘えてる but not sure now and how about when it gonna turn into 甘えられる what kind of meaning with il have? 恋人は私に甘えられる
    恋人に甘えたい 恋人に甘えられたい can you please tell me the meaning of it
    Thank you

    • Maggie says:


      Hi agu,
      甘やかす means “to spoil”
      甘える is one of those words which is very difficult to translate.
      AはBに甘える means, “A depends on B” “A acts like a child with B.”or “A behave affectionate towards B”
      AはBに甘えられたい “A wants B to be more affectionate”/ A wants B to be more close to B.

  122. JC says:

    (I’m sorry for double or triple posting but my usual web browser crashed twice posting this message… すみません)

    Hi Maggie and Yukari !

    I’m new to and I must say I’m impressed by the quantity and quality of
    the teachings you provided us with ^^
    It’s a very good initiative to give real japanese advises and lessons. Not everybody wants
    to become a Master in grammar in order to simply communicate with japanese natives.
    So, good job so far to you two !

    I’m not sure whether I’m posting in the proper section or not but I have a question
    about an expression someone used to reply to one of my tweets. I made some kind of
    play on word between the name of a touring bus company called 「ビッグ・バス」, which I ran over
    while I was walking in the streets of Paris, and a video game character named 「ビッグ・ボス」.
    Not sure it was a good pun though huhu but the prononciation sounded close enough so…

    Anyway, the person I was adressing to replied on his Tweeter account 「ちょっとウケた(^^)」
    I’ve read your lesson on 「笑う」 which explains greatly the expression 「今日は受けた (orウケた)!」
    but as the word 「ちょっと」 was used I was not sure how to translate his answer.

    Also, I would like to answer something nice to him if his answer means he laughed at my joke
    but I realize I’m not able to find a correct, polite, formulation with a “thankful spirit in it”
    for this particular situation.

    Is there any way you could help me with this matter ^^ ?

    Thank you very much in advance !!!

    ps : if it helps, here’s the link to his answer with my tweet embedded within, feel free
    to correct the sentence in my tweet if needed :

    • @JC
      Hello JC! Welcome to Maggie’s Room. Thank you for the nice words! We are very happy that you found this page!

      Anyway, ちょっとウケた。is a colloquial expression. It was kinda funny.
      (The literal meaning of ちょっと is a little but we use it “sort of/kind of” and ウケる・受ける means “Someone finds something funny”)

      In Twitter, we usually response that kind of tweet with emoticon.
      But if you want to show “thankful sprits” then how about
      I am happy to hear you found it funny.
      You can omit the last です to make it sound more casual.

  123. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. Thanks for your answer, it has cleared away a lot of my confusion. Also I feel totally embarassed about mistake 2B. (Sorry about that)

    Anyway, I have more questions today.

    1. Does になら have a pattern? I read a sentence from a book which was 「君になら何でもしてあげる」and I immediately thought that it meant, “If it was (for) you, I would do anything/I would do anything for you” but then again I am not so sure. I know nara means if but what does ni nara mean?

    I had a thought which was, what if it was:
    君のためになら shortened into 君になら
    Would that make sense? I think so…or does ni nara have a defined meaning?

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      I just made a lesson on なら by chance. Will release it in a few weeks.

      Noun + particle +なら (= nara)

      It may be easier for you to figure out why we use に

      A +に+ something をしてあげる。
      To do something for A.

      (giving a condition/ emphasizing A)


      So you can also say

      • The river puppy says:

        Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. Thanks for your answer, I will wait for the lesson! XD. Also, I realised that I only asked one question last time and yet I wrote questions lol.

        Anyway, I have one more unrelated question today.

        1. I read in a story: するとツルがおじいさんの頭の上を三べん回って、「カウ、カウ、カウ」と、さも嬉しそうに鳴いて飛んでいきました。
        I’m curious, shouldn’t it be するとツルがおじいさんの頭の上に三べん回って。。。to mean that the bird flew above the old man’s head in a circle (3 times?)—what does the san ben mean by the way (Because I don’t know exactly but am assuming that it means three times)

        Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
        いつもありがとうございます! XD

        • Maggie says:

          @The river puppy

          Hi The river puppy!

          1. Yes, your translation is correct.
          べん is a counter.
          三べん= 三回= three times.

          • The river puppy says:

            Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. Thanks for your answer but I also wanted to know if it was

            するとツルがおじいさんの頭の上 (を) 三べん回って。。。
            するとツルがおじいさんの頭の上 (に) 三べん回って。。。

            or if both were alright (And if they are how would they be different because I think no.1 sounds strange)

            Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
            いつもありがとうございます! XD

          • Maggie says:

            @The river puppy

            It should be 頭の上を not 頭の上に
            〜を回る You need an object particle を
            so as
            〜を飛ぶ 空を飛ぶ、上空を飛ぶ

            But if the ツル drops something on おじいさん’s head, you use に

  124. Lava says:







    • Maggie says:


      1. この手前は in one’s presenceという意味です。 in the presence of my friend

      2. 「合流してから」と「合流してからというもの」の違いですが、意味は同じなのですが、「合流してからというもの」はそれから何かがずっと起こっているという状態を表す時に使います。(We can assume something has been contently happening since X get together with Y.)

      3. 「あろうことか」(of all things) は、なにかとんでもないこと/あってはいけないことが起きた時に驚きの感情を表すときに使います。(It shouldn’t have happened but it happened…)

      Ex. あろうことか、彼に日記を読まれてしまった。
      Ex. あろうことか、祖母が再婚した。

      4. 拝む、崇拝、崇める、祀る そうですね、英語だとworshipで訳されますが、他に

      「拝む 」he action of praying, to see something/someone precious   初日の出を拝む
      「崇拝する」to admire someone  彼は自分の父を崇拝している。
      「崇める」to respect, to look up to ピカソは多くの芸術家に崇められていた。
      「祀る」to enshrine  この神社では聖なる石が祀られている。


  125. obakasan000 says:

    Good day dear Maggie sensei and 天人さん. Thank you so much for answering my questions.

    はい, 久しぶりですね, 天人さん. 相変わらず, とても上手です.
    (hope my reply is ok for天人さん)

    My question for today is:


    Translation given:
    everyone making time during their precious New Year’s Eve and Day holidays for us,
    (this is a long sentence, I just copy the part which contains [ての].

    this is the first time I have ever seen て form plus の = 掛けての貴重な時間.
    my interpretation for 掛けての貴重な時間 is somewhat like =

    [precious time allotted for new year’s eve and day]

    1. Or is there by any chance that 掛けての貴重な時間 is another form of

    2. or 掛けての is needed because an adjective is already place before 時間?

    3. or none of the above. I would like to ask for dear Maggie sensei’s or 天人さん’s english version.

    Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei and 天人さん.

    • Maggie says:



      大晦日から元旦に掛けての modifies ”時間”
      If this ての confuses you, you can rephrase it as

      I will show you other examples with ての

      春に向けてのダイエット= 春に向けたダイエット

      You tried to translate 掛ける as a verb but it will be easier for you to translate (〜から〜に) 掛けて, → “over (certain period) “.
      大晦日から元旦に掛けて= over Christmas and New Year’s Eve

      So 大晦日から元旦に掛けての貴重な時間 means “the precious time over Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

      • obakasan000 says:

        Good evening dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much for explaining it to me.

        My questions for today are:

        1. もしもし..lesson

        (「出かけております」。「今、おりません。」と文章を終えてもいいですが、時と して日本語は語尾を終わらせない方が、柔らかく聞こえます。また、終 わらせないことで相手にどうしたらいいのか言ってもらう時間を与える ことがあります。

        And the given translation is:

        (You can finish the sentence like “Dekakete orimasu.” or “Ima Orimasen.” but sometimes they don’t finish the sentences to make them sound softer.)

        But then I could not find the translation for the latter sentence so I tried and I came with:

        [also, by doing so, there are times when you will have the caller(相手)wonder what to reply]

        Is my understanding ok?

        2. blog:

        Translation given:
        I hope that her energetic smile won’t fade,
        and that she’ll have a wonderful year full of happiness

        It seemed that the translator treated な as に but then my i tried to translate it on my own but it seemed clumsy:

        [in this way, I want her to have a wonderful year as 21 years old with happiness where her energetic smile won’t fade]

        幸せ has been modified by もその元気な笑顔が絶えないような.

        I would like to ask for dear Maggie sensei’s version…


        Given translation:

        And because
        It’s been ages since we had
        Release events like this…

        I think the translation is good but I would like ask:

        a. I think も in こともあった can be interchangeable with が, and も here is the emphasizing も. Is that correct?

        b. what could be difference between the Japanese sentence above and just a plain sentence without こともあった? –

        Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

        • Maggie says:


          1. Oh it is one of my first lessons. And all this time I didn’t know there wasn’t any translation.

          What I wanted to say was,

          By not finishing the sentence, you could give the listener some time to think what to say.

          2. Your translation is more accurate, I think.

          Or you could just say “~~ will be filled with smiles and happiness” without translating “fading” pard.
          3. こともあった: As you said the particle も has a function of emphasizing what comes before but in this case, I think that も means “also”.

          久々だったので→久々なこともあり or 久々なこともあったので adding more reason for the previous sentence.

          • obakasan000 says:

            Good morning dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much..

            My questions for today are:

            If there is no given context, what would be the meaning of this sentence:

            a. I think yajima-sama is cute as always/always cute.
            b. yajima-sama always thinks that she is cute.

            what i really want to say is [a]. .n_n.
            2. blog:

            I would like to ask if the でも here is the same でも in
            お茶でも飲みませんか?、where in でも makes お茶 vauge?
            And If I will apply it here, it would be something like:

            [I hope a lot of people “or (even) few” became interested in ℃-ute]

            少しでも多くmade me confused so,
            I would like to ask for dear Maggie sensei’s English version.

            3. about ほしい

            てほしい and てほしいです,

            I normally see てほしい to mean [i] want someone to do [verb]. Most of the time, てほしいです means [i] hope someone to do [verb].
            I would like to ask if by just simply adding です to ほしい, would it really give the meaning of [I hope] instead of [I want]?
            or it still means [I want] but polite?
            Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

          • Maggie says:


            Good morning!

            1. a) is correct.
            2. 少しでも: This demo means “even (a little)”

            3.Yes, I want someone to do something 〜てほしい →(more polite) 〜てほしいです

  126. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. Sorry for all the mistakes at the end. Anyway, thanks for the corrections, I understood most of them. (Umm…I think)

    1. I recently reviewed the mama lesson and I think I get it now. So anyway, I’ve made a few (mama) examples, please tell me if I got them right (Or wrong)

    A. Would (雨に降られているがままダンスしながら歌う) mean to sing and dance while being rained on?

    B. Would (ピノキオはずっと人形のままでいたくなかった) mean Pinocchio didn’t want to remain a puppet forever? Or should it be ありたくなかった since puppets aren’t human?

    C. 彼が笑顔をしているまま「百万円を貸してくれる」と言いました。(While smiling, he asked, “Would you lend me a million yen.”.)

    D. Would (今日の僕が同じ昨日の僕のままで居たくない) mean I don’t want to be the same me as yesterday?

    2. Also, I recently viewed the you lesson and I think I understand it now. (It wasn’t too hard as I had learnt about You ni naru and You da from another site before) Anyway, would these sentences be correct:

    A. 死なないように何かを食べなくてはいけない (To not die, I must eat something)

    B. マギー先生の素晴らしいサイトがずっと今のままでいますように
    (I hope Maggie sensei’s awesome site will forever stay just as it is now)

    C. 彼が子犬のように元気でした (He was as lively as a puppy)

    3. Since de is a location marker which denotes that you are Doing something somewhere, could I say:
    天国に素敵な誕生日をなりますように to mean I hope you will have a nice brithday in heaven?

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @the river puppy

      A: 雨に降られているが →雨に降られるがまま may be better.

      B.いたくなかった Because it is a story and Pinocchio has a will.
      C. 彼が笑顔をしているまま→彼は笑顔のまま is more natural

      D. Grammatically correct but I would say


      A. Good (or you can also say 生きるために〜)

      B. いますように→(Since you are talking about the site) ありますように or あり続けますように。

      And thank you for the example sentence! :)
      C. 彼が→彼は

      3. Since de is a location marker which denotes that you are Doing something somewhere, could I say:
      天国に素敵な誕生日をなりますように to mean I hope you will have a nice brithday in heaven?

      →Still に is strange. I would still say to stick to say 天国で 素敵な誕生日を過ごしますように. But if you really want to say なりますように and 天国 together,

  127. Maggie says:

    Listening homework from Twitter/Facebook.

    0:00~ 0:36まで見て(  )をうめてください。

    家で( 1 )してばかりいないでさあ
    ( 2 )外で遊んだら?

    といっても( 3 )だろうなあ
    外に出たってな~んにも( 4 )もの
    ( 5 )ひいちゃ( 6 )し
    雪でも降りゃあ( 7 ) ね

    Watch 0:00~ 0:36 and fill the blanks.

    Ie de ( 1 )shite bakari inai de saa.
    ( 2 )soto de asondara?

    To itte mo ( 3 )darou naa.
    Samui mono.

    Soto ni detatte naannimo ( 4 )mono.
    ( 5 )hiicha ( 6 )shi
    Yuki demo furyaa ( 7 ) ne.


    1 ゴロゴロ= gorogoro
    (家でゴロゴロ・ごろごろする= ie de goro goro suru = chilling out, relaxing at home)

    2 たまには = tamaniwa = ( to do something) for a change
    Ex. たまには勉強したら?
    = Why don’t you study for a change?

    3 外に行かない = soto ni ikanai = wanna go out?

    4 面白いことない = omoshiroi koto nai = nothing interesting

    5 風邪でも = kaze demo = (to catch) a cold

    6 つまんない = tsumannai = not fun (a casyak form of つまらない=tsumaranai)

    7 別だけど = betsu dakedo = (雪でもふりゃあ= a casual contraction of 雪でもふれば= If it snows)

    Sentence pattern: 〜ば・たら〜(話は)別だけど = ~ ba/ tara ~ ( hanashi wa) betsu dakedo

  128. hana says:

    Hi Maggie! How have you been? Hope you are doing okay!

    I am curious as to what Maggie thinks of this:




    So I’m basically wondering…shouldn’t 有効期限 be 2012年6月1日? What do you think? :D

    Thank you!

    • Maggie says:


      Hi hana! I’m good! Thank you for asking!

      It is confusing, huh?
      When you usually talk about the expiration date, the term of validity counts the day you registered.

      For example, if you buy a 3 day ticket today (Oct. 5th), you can use it on Oct. 5th, 6th and 7th for three days.
      If you buy a month ticket on Oct. 1st, you can use it until Oct. 31st.
      If you buy a year ticket on Oct.1st in 2015, you can use it until “Sept”. 30th (→sorry. Fixed it) in 2016.

      Therefore, if you registered on Jun 1st in 2009, it valid until May 31st in 2012.

      • hana says:

        Hi Maggie,

        Glad to hear you’re doing good!

        Thank you for the examples, I get it now! I think you meant for the year ticket to expire on Sept.30 2016 but I got it anyway.

        I have a vague feeling of having and solving this problem before, though not pertaining to Japanese. It’s kinda funny, the things you forget sometimes…Probably too much Japanese no more space!!

  129. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. First of all I just want to say OMG I spelled your name wrong! Sorry about that. Anyway, I have a few more things to ask but let me start by saying that I you were right, a Siamese does have fur. It’s actually the sphinx cat that is furless. Sorry, I don’t seem to know my cats very well. XD.

    Basically my questions are what I think you meant in your answers. I want to know such and such was what you meant.

    Anyway, about your reply, 天国で素敵な誕生日になりますように!→Either, 素敵な誕生日になりますように!(without 天国) or 天国で素敵な誕生日を 過ごしてください。

    1. I don’t quite understand this. Is it unnatural to wish somebody a birthday in heaven (Maybe it is starting to sound unnatural…) but please enjoy a good birthday in heaven does sound more natural. That’s what I concluded anyway…I just wanted to ask if that was what you meant.

    2. 私のすごい先生にいてください!→私の(すごい)先生でいてください。
    It took me awhile to understand what this meant but I think I know now. They say that in Japanese that whatever can be ommitted is put in ( ) so this means that you are naturally awesome, to which I totally agree XD. Is this what you meant?

    3. これまで、手伝ってくれたことに感謝しています (I think what you wrote sounds better but I just also wanted to ask if using tetsudai as a noun is unnatural as compared to the usual Something+Kurete+Arigatou pattern)

    4. Lastly, I think I sorta found out the difference between では And には、In that は Is used a topic marker and the real difference is only between ni and de, which I think I understand.

    So…would I be correct to say:
    人の口には細菌が沢山あるんだ。(Wait…are germs considered to be alive or dead? Dead right?) XD


    5. I was going to ask why (手伝ってくれたことに感謝しています。) had a ni in it but then I reviewed your arigatou lesson and found out that that’s the way it is (Though ni is usually ommitted) but I still wanted to check if that was right. So…is it?

    PS: 最近、細菌が以前より、もっと危ないになったね。(I used it twice! XD)

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @the river puppy
      1. The location marker, で is used when there is some activities or you do some actions.

      Ex. 別荘で休日を過ごす= to spend holidays in one’s second house.
      Ex. 海辺でBBQを楽しむ= to enjoy BBQ in the beach

      but 素敵誕生日になる (= to be a nice birthday) is not an event or action. So you can’t use 天国で
      If you use 天国で, you need some actions such as “過ごす= to spend time”
      Ex. 天国で誕生日を過ごす= to spend one’s birthday in Heaven.

      2. 私のすごい先生にいてください!→私の(すごい)先生でいてください。

      The main problem in the sentence was the particle. You use に but it should be で (some state でいる= remain ~ )


      I will try to be your すごい先生。:D

      3. When you say “Thank you for your help.” you don’t use a noun form, 助けをありがとう。手伝いをありがとう.

      Verb form is more natural. 助けてくれてありがとう・手伝ってくれてありがとう。
      It is funny because you can say
      Thank you for supporting me.
      Thank you for your support.

      4. Your examples made me laugh but you got them right. :D

      5. I have to go back to my ありがとう lesson too but as I mentioned above

      you say
      But when you use 感謝しています。you need an object marker

      PS: 最近、細菌が以前より、もっと危ないになったね。


  130. obakasan000 says:

    Good day dear Maggie sensei. .n_n.
    Thank you so much for correcting my beliefs.
    I am truly sorry for all this time…

    my question for today is:

    『9→10周年記念℃-uteコンサートツアー2015春~The Future Departure~』です

    Given translation:
    “9→10-Shuunenkinen” represents crossing over from our 9th year to our 10th year on June 11th, and also means “℃-ute” (9→10)

    Translator’s note: ℃-ute and (9→10) both have the same pronunciation.
    9 = きゅう, 10 = とう, ℃-ute = キュート

    Is there by any chance that even though there is a [,] between というand ℃-ute, the word [and] is not really necessary because the format of this sentence is [clause + という + noun] like in:

    the fear that we can’t predict what is going to happen
    (from という lesson)

    and if it’s alright, i would like to ask for dear maggie sensei’s english version.
    Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

    • Maggie says:



      Yes, I agree. You don’t need “、” between という and ℃-ute.
      The translation is pretty good.

      You could also say after June 11th, something like
      it has a pun on ” 9th→10th anniversary” with ℃-ute (You pronounce 9, “kyuu” and 10, “to” in Japanese.
      “kyuu+ to” →”cute”)

      • obakasan000 says:

        Good day dear Maggie sensei.
        Thank you so much for giving me your own version.

        please correct me if I got these all wrong.

        She is pretty and (she is) also the person I met yesterday.

        But how about:

        She is pretty. She is also the person I met yesterday.
        彼女が奇麗です. 昨日出会った人でもある.

        Is my understanding of でもある somewhat ok?

        Thank you so much in advance dear Maggie sensei.

        • Maggie says:



          They are both grammatically correct (the second sentence should be 昨日出会った人でもあります。)but they don’t sound natural.
          I would say 昨日会った人はきれいな女性でした。

          • obakasan000 says:

            good morning dear Maggie sensei. Thank you so much for explaining them to me.
            I would like to ask for some clarifications:
            What could be the difference between:

            僕[には]彼女がいます and 僕[は]彼女がいます, if they both mean
            [I have a girl friend]?

            i think 僕[に]彼女がいます would be strange so this には is not probably the
            に+は where in the は shows more contrast.

            I have never seen 僕[には]お金があります, only 僕[は]お金があります, to mean
            [I have money]

            thank you so much in advance, dear maggie sensei.

          • Maggie says:


            Thank you for answering the question for obakasan000


            Yes, we do say Someone にはお金があります。

          • 天人 says:

            久しぶりでんな、 obakasan!
            Meaning is the same, but には~がある/には~ができる emphasizes / stresses the sentence much more.

  131. 天人 says:

    Hi Maggie! I need your assistance, オッケ?じゃ、レツゴー!
    Today’s questions are about ~まい. I have read this >> <> << and I guess that nowadays there are no rules.

    2. まい has several meanings. One of them is べきではない. Could you make for me 2 examples?

    2a. Did I translate this sentence correctly? いい年をして新婚旅行でもあるまい。"You’re old enough to know, that you shouldn't go on a honeymoon." I'm not sure, because this sentence sounds a bit strange…

    3. Is there a difference between ~ようと、まいと and ~ようが、まいが? If yes, then where's the nuance?

    4. Does 笑うまいと思う mean 笑いたくない(と思う)/笑う場合じゃない(と思う)?


    • 天人 says:

      heh… and where’s my question nr. 1 disappeared ?

      1. Please explain me, when should I use ~まい (見まい/食べまい) and when ーるまい (帰るまい/言うまい). I read this article: >> << and I guess that nowadays there are no rules.

    • Maggie says:


      Hi 天人さん!

      1) OK, I read the site and it explains well. If there is something that I would add, when we use it solely I think we use both 食べまい and 食べるまい

      Ex. 太るからもうこれ以上食べまいと思ってもついつい食べてしまう。
      Ex. 太るからもうこれ以上食べるまいと思ってもついつい食べてしまう。

      But when you use the pattern ようが〜まいが ”don’t mind/care whether someone does ~ or not”, we use 食べまい more.

      = Whether I eat this or not is none of your business.

      Also I have never heard こまい….I think くるまい is more common.

      2-a) It is not so common to use まい in the meaning of べきではない in modern Japanese.
      Only in classic Japanese so that I can’t make example sentences but here are two lines that I found in an online dictionary.

      「はずれたら笑うまいぞ」You shouldn’t laugh when I miss (make a mistake.)
      「必ず物をいふまいぞ」 You shouldn’t say anything
      「ああ貧乏はせまいもの」 We/I / People shouldn’t be poor.

      As you can see these lines are excerpts from old literature.

      2-b) Your translation is right but the line implies that
      You are too old to go on a honeymoon. (There is no need to go on a honeymoon because you are too old.)


      1) 雨が降ろうが降るまいが、出かけるつもりだ。
      2) 雨が降ろうと降るまいと、出かけるつもりだ。

      They mean the same.
      I would say 〜ようが is slightly stronger than ようと

      • 天人 says:

        Thanks Maggie! That was very helpful.

        You omitted question nr. 4 ^ ^ ==> Does 笑うまいと思う mean 笑いたくない(と思う)/笑う場合じゃない(と思う)?

        Last additional questions.
        1. すまい/しまい/するまい ==> which variant the most common one?

        2. I found also that まいか used as ~ないぞ or ものか ==> 泣くまいか! Implying negative determination (=I WILL NOT cry!). Is this correct?

        3. What’s the equivalent in English of なろうことかなるまいことか/あろうことかあるまいことか?
        Could you tell me also the synonym of this construction in Japanese? (maybe it’s なんてこと/なんということ!)

        a. あろうことかあるまいことか、子を殺すなんて。
        b. あろうことかあるまいことか、走者の走っているコースに飛び出してしまった。
        c. そんな自分勝手なことがなろうことかなるまいことかよく考えてみろ。
        d. 思いどおりになろうことかなるまいことか、しっかり考えてみろ。

        3a. I don’t know know to translate it, when this construction is in the middle of the sentence (example: c and d). Please help!

        はい! !riceball!  !riceball! 
        ヨロシク ^ ^

        • Maggie says:


          Oh worry! I missed your last question.

          4. Does 笑うまいと思う mean
          笑う場合じゃない(と思う)→Could be

          It means “try not to laugh / decide not to laugh”

          Today’s questions

          1. Depending on the usage

          しようとしまいと ( we usually use しまい)

          するかすまいか ( we use すまい more)

          Finishing the sentence
          もうこんなことはするまい。(We use するまい more.)

          2. Yes but finishing まいか is for classic Japanese. We use 泣くまい in modern Japanese.

          3. (maybe it’s なんてこと/なんということ!) Also とんでもないことだ / 信じられない/ そんなことがあってはならない / ~はずがない

          Let me rephrase them
          a. 子を殺すなんてとんでもないことだ。b.
          b. 信じられないことだが、走者の走っているコースに飛び出してしまった。
          c. そんな自分勝手なことをしていいはずがないということをよく考えてみろ。
          d. 思いどおりになるはずがないということを、しっかり考えてみろ。

  132. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie sensei! It is me again. I have a few questions today. Please help me! XD.

    1. First of all I want to know if I had made any mistakes in my last message to you (Or did I say anything unnatural?) or was it alright?

    2. Could you please write “Siamese are cats without fur” in Japanese?

    3. Ummm…could you explain the differences and also how to use dewa and niwa? I have never learnt what they meant and the only reason why I had written: 今,天国に住んでいますが、世界ではたくさんの生徒がマーギー先生のことを想っています。Is because I went with my gut and decided that dewa sounded (better?) than niwa.

    (PS: I know dewa can mean “Well” but I want to know more about the other meanings)

    Here is an example I found: 皆さん、こんにちは!1月5日から冬休みを取ります。この間(少なくとも10日間程)、頂いた質問には答えることはできません。

    Would it have a different meaning if it was: 皆さん、こんにちは!1月5日から冬休みを取ります。この間(少なくとも10日間程)、頂いた質問では答えることはできません。?

    I basically have no idea how to use them in this regard. Also there was nimo but let’s leave that for sometime else. Thanks for listening. XD

    Thanks in advance for your help Maggie sensei! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy


      1. You mean this message?

      That was the sweetest message.
      Anyway if you want to learn from your sentence…

      マーギー→マギー :D

      天国で素敵な誕生日になりますように!→Either, 素敵な誕生日になりますように!(without 天国) or 天国で素敵な誕生日を過ごしてください。


      Thank you again for the nice message.

      2. シャム猫は毛がない猫です。But it is not true…Siamese cats do have fur, I believe.

      3. 世界ではたくさんの生徒がマーギー先生のことを想っています You are right.
      location +では、(when someone does some activities, when some events happens.)

      But you use には in

      location + には= ある・いる (exist)

      It may be easier for you to think without は (は here is to emphasize the meaning.)

      * 質問に答える = to answer the question (object marker)
      *電話に出る= to anser the phone

      You don’t say

  133. Kuroineko says:

    I thought that 腹 is not feminine so it would sound weird or manly for a female to say it. Is it true? for example ”腹が減った”
    BTW, is your site heavy to load?, because it takes a lot of time to load any page from your site (even the home page). Is this problem from my side? Cuz other sites are working just fine.
    I have a suggestion, can you make lessons about “擬音語/擬声語”? I don’t know which one is correct tho. Japanese language is so full of them.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Maggie says:


      It’s true that 腹が減る sounds rough so that we should お腹(なか)が減る instead when we talk more politely.
      (Especially women avoid using it.)

      But 腹が立つ is neutral.

      “擬音語/擬声語” are too many. I thought about making a lesson but I think there are some sites exist already. Go google and search them.

  134. Kuroineko says:

    It may be late (because I just found out), “お誕生日おめでとうございます”
    I wish you a great birthday for this year and many years to come.
    I hope you continue to support your students and anyone interested in this great language.

    I have the following questions:

    1. about this sentence “かれれは部屋が空っぽだとわかった” why is わかった translated as found? and what is とわかった? why と?

    2. what is the difference between 夕方 and 黄昏?aren’t they both mean “evening, dusk”? I’m confused.

    3. 腹が立ち is it male language only or it can be used by females as well?


    • Maggie says:


      ありがとう!for your nice birthday message. I won’t get older anymore but I am happy to read birthday messages.

      1. わかる has various translation but in this case “found” is the closest translation.
      〜とわかる = found something is ~
      This と is to quote something and you usually use it with 聞く、言う、知る、わかる
      heard / said/ found out + that ~~~~

      2. 夕方 means evening and it is just the period of time in a day.
      黄昏 is twilight

      3. 腹が立つ – both men and women use.

  135. The river puppy says:


  136. kuroineko says:

    そうなんだ。。 I didn’t know that as in my country it’s only published in the morning.
    so as for 自業自得, people don’t use it nowadays? Please tell me casual words for the same meaning (you deserve this!) female word and male word.

    I have the following questions:

    1. What is 生活+example?

    2. What is 案内 is it a verb or what?

    3. what is 田楽 is i a dance or a dish?

    4. is 楽観的な used to describe people? If so pls give me an example.


    • Maggie says:


      You do use 自業自得 in conversation.

      I can give you the meaning and the examples this time but you can have more good examples on web dictionary.
      1. 生活 =life, living life
      学生生活を送る=to have a school life.
      生活を支える= to support one’s living.

      2. 案内= information, guide, to give someone a tour
      Ex. 学校を案内しましょうか?= Would like a tour in the school?
      Ex. 会社案内をもらった。= I got an information on the company.

      3. 田楽 is a dish. Grilled tofu topped with miso sauce. (Google it. You will see the picture)

      4. Yes. 彼は何があっても楽観的だ。= He is optimistic no matter what.

  137. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie Sensei! I have a few questions today. Please answer them. XD

    1. Is there such a phrase as “shinayo” I read it in a story as 我慢しなよ. I think it was something like an instrcution for the guy to “take” the pain but wouldn’t that be (shinasai) is this another way to give orders to somebody?

    2. What is the difference between 掛ける and 座る? I thought 座る was the only words to mean sit but in another story I was reading, it used kakeru to mean sit.

    3. What is the difference between 教える and 伝える? Oshieru is supposed to mean teach but i’ve found out that most of the time it really means tell or inform. So…are they synonymous or are there some slight differences?

    4. I read this in the same second story which detailed an old woodcutter sitting (掛ける) on a stump.
    (This was later on in the story):こんなきれいな歌声は、今まで聞いたことがありません。
    I wonder is this is a typo because i’m pretty sure it should be konnani and not just konna. Does it have a different meaning or am I right?

    5. By any chance do you know what コロコロリン means? Korokoro means something like a rolling noise but what does the extra rin do?

    Sorry for the too many questions as usual but I really needed to ask them. XD

    Thanks for everything so far! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hello The river puppy,

      1. You are right ~しなよ is a male speech and a command form.

      There is another strong male command form
      ~しなさい→command form しろ (strong/male speech) →しろよ Do ~!

      しなよ is a command form but compare to しろよ, it is slightly lighter. It is like “Why don’t you ~!”

      2. 座る and 掛ける a lot of time they are interchangeable.

      Here’s the difference.
      お座りください。 Please sit down.
      お掛けください。 Please take a seat.

      But 掛ける is only used when people sit down on a couch, a chair or sofa, etc.
      座る is the action of sitting down so you can use it when you sit on the floor.

      3. Right 教える means “to teach/ to tell / to give an instruction / to tell”

      Ex. 1) 日本語を教える。= to teach Japanese
      Ex. 2) 住所を教える。 = to give one’s address. (as an information)
      Ex. 3) 昨日何が起きたか教える= to tell (someone) what happened yesterday.

      I think what you want to ask is the usage 3) .

      伝える= to tell something someone (to pass the information that you have), to communicate
      教える= to tell something someone to make them understand.

      There are more differences but I think this is enough at the moment.

      4. ~リン is added to make the word sound cuter.

      There is a story of rolling rice ball, おむすびころりん

  138. kuroineko says:

    Thank you for encouraging me. I hope one day I’ll master Japanese as well. It’s gonna be a long way. !happyface!

    I have a question:
    1. What is the difference between 朝刊 and 新聞?

    2. How to use exactly the word “自業自得” and “ざまを見ろ”? also is it used by females or only by males?

    ありがとう !happyface!

    • Maggie says:


      1. I don’t know about your country but in Japan they publish newspaper(新聞) twice a day, morning paper 朝刊 and evening paper, 夕刊.
      自業自得 is a word which originally came from Buddhism. to be one’s own fault,what goes around comes around.
      ざまを見ろ is a rough male speech and it is just a mean phrase that you use when you laugh at someone’s misfortune.

  139. Fando says:

    I have some questions. I hope you will help me.

    1. Skydiving was a little scary but so fun. スカイダイビングは少し怖かった。でも、とても楽しい

    2. I recommend try skydiving! しようとスカイダイビングをお勧めします

    3. It doesn’t matter how many time you jump out a plane. Every jump is different.
    It still awesome and I can’t get tired of it . 飛行機をジャンプするどのように多くの時間は関係ありません。すべてのジャンプが違います。 それはまだ素晴らしいと私それの疲れを得ることはできません.

    4. It was my fourth skydiving. それは私の第四のスカイダイビング

    5. It is an indescribable experience. それは筆舌に尽くし難い経験です

    Are my translations correct? If no, could you fix them please? And could you write those sentences in casual way?
    By the way, I’m sorry if my English is bad.
    Maggie sensei, thank you for your help in advance!! Have a nice day. ^^

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Fando,

      1. Skydiving was a little scary but so fun. スカイダイビングは少し怖かった。でも、とても楽しい

      The last part とても楽しい →Past tense 楽しかった(楽しかったです。)

      You can also connect two sentences. スカイダイビングは少し(or casual : ちょっと)怖かったが(or 怖かったけれども)とても楽しかった。/ 楽しかったです。

      2. I recommend try skydiving! しようとスカイダイビングをお勧めします

      What you meant was スカイダイビングをしようとする but 〜ようとする means “try to do something hard/ to make an effort”. I think Verb てみる(give it a try) is more natural.

      スカイダイビングをしてみる(or やってみる) ことをお勧めします。

      3. It doesn’t matter how many time you jump out a plane. Every jump is different.
      It still awesome and I can’t get tired of it . 飛行機をジャンプするどのように多くの時間は関係ありません。すべてのジャンプが違います。 それはまだ素晴らしいと私それの疲れを得ることはできません.

      It doesn’t matter how many time you jump out a plane. Every jump is different.
      How about connecting two sentences,

      It still awesome and I can’t get tired of it .
      →I don’t quite get why you put “still” I would just say そこが素晴らしいところです。That is why it is awesome.

      I can’t get tired of it .
      → You mean “I never get tired of it?”


      4. It was my fourth skydiving. それは私の第四のスカイダイビング

      →(more natural) スカイダイビングをしたのはそれが4回目でした。
      5. It is an indescribable experience. それは筆舌に尽くし難い経験です

      →筆舌に尽くし難い is usually for some negative experience.

      How about 言葉では表せないぐらいの経験です。

  140. Kuroineko says:

    ありがとうfor answering my questions. It was informative.

    Thank you for explaining about the カタカナ, but is there another easy way? as when I look at a text, I would know it immediately without thinking. Just like any カタカナ  ア、オ、キ etc. I wonder how you learnt them when you were a child. I’m so confused. Even though I know a lot of 漢字, the fact that I cannot differentiate between these 4 letters is very sad.. :cry:

    so as for “気晴らし” is always followed by “に”?
    I’ve always wanted to know how to say my lvl in Japanese is… Thank you so much for telling me.

    I am curious to know how you learnt 漢字 when you were a child. Was it only based on memorization or how exactly? Did you study 漢字 in university as well, or was it only until high school?

    It’s amazing how someone can know over 1000 漢字, but don’t you forget how to write or read 漢字 sometimes?

    Learning 漢字 can be fun, but at the same time, so frustrating and especially if you forget some of the 漢字 that you were sure you studied and memorized so well.

    Please tell me about your point of view regarding my questions above. I’m very curious.

    マギー先生、you are the best ever. 出会えて本当によかった。

    • Maggie says:


      As for the katakana, I wish I could show you in front of you to see the difference but don’t be so nervous about it. A lot of time, we get confused by people’s handwriting as well. But we just assume by the word.
      We learn kanji in the class in high school too.Students have to take kanji tests often. Also a lot of time we learn kanji by reading stories.
      And yes, we do forget how to write kanji everyday. :)

      Don’t stress out. If you learn kanji one or two everyday, eventually you will know lots of them.

      You are not the only one who struggles learning kanji. We do,too!

  141. kuroineko says:

    I’m glad that you still post lessons. Thank you so much. You site is amazing and I hope you always keep posting new and fun lessons.

    I can read ひらがな pretty well, but I’m struggling in カタカナ。 Please teach me the difference between ツand シ and ソ and ン? when I try to read them I get so confused as they look almost the same. Would you teach me an easy way to recognize them immediately in a text?

    I have the following questions:

    1. What is the difference between “水田” and “田んぼ”?

    2. What is “気晴らし”+example?

    3. “専門 is used when you talk about your university major?

    4. what is “皮肉る”+example?

    5. How to say I’m a (beginner/intermediate/ advanced) in Japanese?

    本当にありがとう in advance.

    • Maggie says:


      Hello! Kuroineko! お久しぶり!! I am very happy to see your comment here again.
      I just had the same question from someone else. I wish I could make a video or something and show the difference…
      ソ(=so) and ン(=n) : The biggest difference is the left line. the left line of ソ(=so) is going down (almost vertical)* but the left line of ン is a little more horizontal.
      (*If if it totally vertical, it will be another katakana リ(=ri) )

      And ツ(=tsu) and シ(=shi) are the same thing. Compared to ツ(=tsu), the left two lines of シ(=shi) is more horizontal.

      1. 田んぼ is more conversational.

      2. 気晴らし OK, for example when you had a fight with your friend, you want to just do something fun to take your mind off your trouble. That is 気晴らし
      Or simply do something fun for a change or to relax, to divert oneself.

      Ex. 一日家にいたから気晴らしにどこかにでかけよう。= Since I have been home all day long, I would like to go out for a change.
      Ex. 試験終わったから、気晴らしに飲みにいかない? = Since the exam is over, why don’t we go out for a drink (for fun)

      3. Actually the University major is 専攻(せんこう)
      専門 is expert, specialty.
      Ex. 専門分野 = area of specialization
      Ex. 専門の研究 = specialized research

      4. to be sarcastic, to make ironical/sarcastic remarks

      = This cartoonist has been making sarcastic remarks in his comic strips.

      beginner 入門 (nyumon) who doesn’t know anything.→初級 (shokyuu)
      intermediate 中級 (chuukyuu)
      advanced 上級 (joukyuu)

  142. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie Sensei! Thanks for answering my previous question and sorry for the wa mistake, it was a typo. I have two more questions (Well, 3 but the third isn’t about Japanses) so anyway…

    1. What does nandai mean? I read in a story that a tanuki asked “カチカチと言う音はなんだい” and this was taken to mean “what”. I have heard kai being used in place of ka before but never dai. Is this a dialect?

    2. How would you say “Do something in some way”, like bake the cake happily. Would that require teki? (I didn’t really get that lesson) or is it like something ni/ku shite? ケーキを嬉しくて焼く
    (This is a complete guess) This could be useful for descriptions like: “He ate his food hungrily”.

    3. Okay, this isn’t a Japanese question and you certainly don’t have to answer it but is today Maggie sensei’s birthday? (I know she’s in dog heaven but I think we should still celebrate her birthday) I just wanted to know if it was but it’s ok if you don’t want to tell (but please do!) XD

    Thanks for everything so far! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hello! The river puppy!

      1. なんだい is a casual way to say なんですか? (=What is it?) It is a male speech.
      A little more friendlier than saying なんだ?

      2. The translation of happily changes depending on the sentence.
      * bake the cake happily →Let me rephrase this sentence. →bake the cake having fun = 楽しんでケーキを焼く (嬉しい is a state of being happy. 楽しむ= is a verb to have fun)

      Other example with happily
      They are happily married = 幸せに結婚生活を送っている。

      the adverb like ~ ly works with verb+て form
      He said that angrily = 彼は怒って言った。

      He ate his food hungrily. →this one is kind of special. I would say 彼はガツガツと食べた。

      3. Oh wow… How sweet of you to remember my birthday month. Actually my birthday is Sep. 21st.

  143. Marianne says:

    Today is a new day! Which means new things that I don’t understand :maggie-small:

    1. 「1から3の中から一番いいものを一つ選んでください」
    ->どうして「1から3まで」って書いてないんですか?翻訳は「Please choose the one best answer from 1 to 3」でしょ?このままでは「From 1, please choose the one best answer within 3」って読みちゃう(笑)

    2. 誰かに「何でもなくない」って会話で言われましたけど、文法が変でよくわかりません。

    • Maggie says:


      We are always learning something new!

      1. 中 has a meaning of “among”. So the idea is “choose the best answer among 1, 2 and 3. ” Or it might be easier for you to think
      1から3の中から is from

      2.「何でもなくない」negate “何でもない= 大丈夫= I’m OK/ Not a big deal” so there is something wrong.
      I just finished the double negative lesson so please wait.


      • Marianne says:

        Is is technically correct grammar to negate something that is already negative? ない->なくない


  144. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie Sensei! Thanks for answering my previous question. I have more as usual these questions are all related to one really old question that has been bugging me for awhile now.

    1. How do you use a nan and the end of a sentence? I’ve always wondered what it meant and how to use it. In the nante lesson, there was a line which read なんてつまらない本なんだろう!There have been many other sentences where I have seen it used like なんて美しい犬なんだろう!and 野菜大嫌いんだがキムチ好きなんだ.

    2. Is the such a thing as no-darou/no-deshou like with no desu? (Excluding nan such as in nan-darou) Is there any ndarou or ndeshou? If there is, could you give an example please?

    3. Is it possible to change nai to nee not just in the case of janaika—>janeeka but in sentences like 嘘でわないんだよ!—>嘘でわねんだよ!

    Thanks for everything so far! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy



      (1) なんてつまらない本なんだろう/なんて美しい犬なんだろう

      This なん is actually なんて

      なんて〜だろう・でしょう is a pattern for exclamatory sentences
      What a ~ / How ~/ It is VERY ~

      How beautiful 〜 is/.are = なんてきれいなんだろう (でしょう)

      (2) 野菜大嫌いんだがキムチ好きなんだ.

      ~なんだ・なんです is a casual contraction of 〜なのだ・なのです
      is used when you explain something or make your point.

      2. Again ~ん is a casual contraction of の so it is possible

      = Doushite nanimo tabenain deshouka?

      = Jikan ga nain dato omoimasu.

      3. 嘘でわないんだよ!
      First spelling わ→は


      There is a type of male speech which is very blunt ねえ・ねー


      You may hear this in anime or comic books but you can’t use it with someone superior.

  145. Marianne says:

    I’ve missed you, Maggie Sensei. But now I’m back! (^o^)/




    • Maggie says:






      It is a typical comedy skit routine and now a lot of people use this as a joke.
      For example when someone says something (I will do it/I won’t do it or criticize something) and then changes their mind all of a sudden and say something opposite, you say (やっぱり)~ かい!= You do that anyway??/ So you are going to do that? (I thought you said you wouldn’t!) (But you just said you wouldn’t!)
      In this case, What!? You are going to sleep anyway?

      • Marianne says:

        As always, your answers are so insightful and so clear. Thank you so much! boucingheart!

        • Maggie says:



          • Marianne says:

            One more question: What would be a good ツッコミ to say back? What would be a native-like response to 〜んかい?

          • Maggie says:


            Usually that type of ツッコミ (Ex.やるんかい!やらないんかい!) is a punch line so it will be funnier to leave like that.
            There are two roles in Japanese comedy routine.
            ボケ(the one who is innocent and says something stupid, contradicted) and ツッコミ(the one who points that out) and ツッコミ says that kind of punch line.

          • Marianne says:

            Japanese comedy is so interesting^^

          • Maggie says:


            You’re welcome. If you want to know about ツッコミ, go check Japanese comedy on Youtube.
            It might be a little difficult but you will see how they talk back and forth.

  146. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie Sensei! Thanks alot for answering my questions, everything makes alot more sense now. Y’know, I really don’t thank you enough so thanks again! XD

    Anyway, I just have a few small questions this time (Please help):

    1. Just finished the last bits of the saseru and saserareru lesson. I noticed that 行く, やる and 泣く seem to be part of the different class. (And it’s not sa-ire kotoba because there aren’t any se(s) in front of them) so I just wanted to know if they were special class types.

    2. What’s the difference between 沈む、沈める and 沈没? In a story i’ve been reading, it said at the ending,タヌキは海の底に沈んだ. So I thought that perhaps suken shipe was shizunda fune but it wasn’t. I found out that chimbotsu-sen mean suken ship. Does Shizumu mean (a person) sunk while Chimbotsu means (a ship) sunk? I also read that shizumu can be used for the sun setting…

    3. About 沈没, is it read as chiN-botsu or Chimbotsu (I think the latter)

    4. (Hmmm, perhaps I had many questions after all…hehe, sorry about that) What’s the difference between舟 and 船? I read both of them in my story and they seemed to be used interchangably. How ever, chimbotsusen was 沈没船 (So perhaps only 船 can be read as sen…)

    Sorry for the many questions (I didn’t think there’d be so many but they were cosely related…)
    Thanks for everything so far! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @the river puppy

      Hello, there

      1. As I wrote in the lesson or reply to someone’s question in the comment section, certain verbs have two forms of causative forms.
      行かせる/ 行かす, 泣かせる/泣かす in that sense, yes, they are special class as you said.

      2. 沈む intransitive verb 船が沈む
      沈める transitive verb AがBを沈める = A makes B sink / send , to put something under water
      沈没 = noun, sinking verb form = 沈没する= 沈む= intransitive verb

      = Tanuki sank to the bottom of the ocean

      3. Spelling-wise, the romaji should be “chinbotsu” but since we change “n” to “m” before “b” in English, you can also spell “chimbotsu”

      4. You usually use 舟 for a small boat and 船 for a bigger ship.

  147. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie Sensei! I think I finally understand how to use passive and causative forms! Anyway, I haven’t read the hoka lesson yet but i’m assuming that it’s used this way. (Please tell me if i’m wrong)

    This is supposed to mean: If pandas do not mate, they are forced to watch videos of other pandas mating by the zookeeper(s) (This is true by the way!)

    Well…does it make any sense? Also, I googled zookeeper and got doubutsuen no shiikugakari. Is there an easier way to say this?

    Thanks for everything so far! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy
      Your translation/interpretation is correct. And really? I didn’t know that.
      As for the the zookeeper, there is no easier way to say.
      (動物園の)飼育係 or 飼育員(しいくいん)

      • The river puppy says:

        Hello Maggie Sensei! It’s great that I finally got it correct! XD Anyway, I have more questions. Also, sorry about writing panda in both katakana and hiragana, I didn’t see it before I posted the message.

        1. If we can replace particle tos with tte, would it then be okay to change だと言う to だって言う?

        2. Again with this と to tte replacement, can we say yotte instead of yoru to?

        3. Speaking of (ni yoru to) I found out that there were three relating to it, に依ると, に拠れば and
        に因って. According to the dictionary に依ると means according to somebody while に因って means was made by. I read in the passive form lesson,グレニカはピカソによって1937年に描かれた. Is the yotte in the same as this に因って?

        4. Also, if I was correct, what is the difference between に依ると, に拠れば? The dictionary says the second mean a quotation. I don’t get it…

        Thanks for everything so far! XD
        いつもありがとうございます! XD

        • Maggie says:

          @The river puppy

          1. would it then be okay to change だと言う to だって言う?


          2. can we say yotte instead of yoru to?

          This is related to your next question but
          よって and よると are different.

          よって= (Something is done / caused )by ~
          よると= according to ~

          3. ゲルニカはピカソによって1937年に描かれた. Is the yotte in the same as this に因って?

          Yes, it means “by”


          →よると and よれば mean almost the same. They both mean “according to” and you use them when you give some information that you heard/saw specifying the source. (I would say you use よると is a little stronger than よれば)

  148. Matthew Trigg says:

    Hi Maggie! (and all the rest of you!)

    I am currently applying for a job teaching English in Japan, and one of the tasks is to introduce myself to the Japanese teachers at the school. It’s basically a test in beginner Japanese. I have worked out most of my speech, but as I know next to no Japanese (complete beginner), I would greatly appreciate it if someone who does know Japanese can check it is ok for me, and maybe alter it if some of the wording is wrong? As I have done it by myself. Also, I want to add an extra bit (where I have written “Insert Here”) but do not know enough Japanese to translate this in speech, and I feel that it would be pointless getting a garbled machine translation.

    If anyone (or Maggie) has the spare time, It would be a great assistance to me if someone could go through this and correct it for me. Thanks!

    Japanese: Konnichiwa Minna-san! Watashi wa Trigg Matthew des, watashi wa eigo. Watashi ha suki hon, anime to bideo geimu. (Insert here) Watashi wa tanoshinoshitemasu goruden weiku, comiket anime expo, eto taberu daifuku ichigo. Yoroshkun gozaishimasu!

    English: Good afternoon, everyone! My name is Matthew Trigg, I’m english. I like books, anime and video games. (insert here) I am looking forward to Golden week, Comiket anime expo and eating daifuku strawberries. Please take care of me!

    Want to add (insert here) – I often reviewed and improved my friends’ essays at University, and help them with spelling correction, grammar and the correct wording in sentence structure. I am also writing a light novel series.

    Many Thanks!

    Matthew Trigg

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Matthew


      Minna-san! →Mina-san!
      Watashi wa Trigg Matthew des, →~~desu

      watashi wa eigo.→Watashi wa igirisu jin desu. (eigo is for English language)

      Watashi ha suki hon, anime to bideo geimu. (Insert here) →Watashi wa hon ya anime, video geimu (insert here) ga suki desu.

      Watashi wa tanoshinoshitemasu goruden weiku, comiket anime expo, eto taberu daifuku ichigo.

      →(Watashi wa) Golden wiiku ya Comiket enime expo, soshite ichigo daifuku wo taberu no wo tanoshimini shiteimasu.

      Yoroshkun gozaishimasu! →Yoroshiku onegai shimasu.


      OK, I don’t usually do the translation but since I will help you just for today.

      I often reviewed and improved my friends’ essays at University, and help them with spelling correction, grammar and the correct wording in sentence structure. I am also writing a light novel series.

      Watashi wa daigaku de yoku tomodachi no essei no chekku wo shitari superu ya bupou, bunshou kousei ni okeru kotoba no tsukaikata nado no tensaku wo tetsudatte imashita.
      Mata jibun de raito noberu mo kaite imasu.

      Good luck! Ganbatte!

  149. jehdal says:

    HI maggie 先生
    次ぎの文は良く分からない, いくら考えても分かりません 文法は教えてくれませんか

    01自分の性癖を嫌と言うほど教え込まれました<—- この文は全然分かりません (「言うほど」は何と意味ですか)
    02さあ第二部は私!福元の司会でお送り致します<—-この文は(その"私" わからない それに お送り致します も分かりません)
    03最初のコーナーは歌手と歌う<—-最初のコーナー は。。。 も 分かりません
    04無事にこなせば退学取り消せるんだぞ?<—- こなせば = 来なせば???
    05たった一回勝てばクリアできるのになぜ勝てない!!<—- 良く分からない

    じゃあ  お返事は本当にありがとう ございます

    • Maggie says:



      01自分の性癖を嫌と言うほど教え込まれました<—- この文は全然分かりません (「言うほど」は何と意味ですか) 嫌と言う程= iya to iu hodo = It is an idiom = (the literal meaning: up to the point where you say “That’s enough! No more!!” ) and it means “too much, more than enough) Ex. スイカを嫌というほど食べた。 = I ate watermelon too much. 02さあ第二部は私!福元の司会でお送り致します<—-この文は(その”私” わからない それに お送り致します も分かりません) 送る means to broadcast on Radio or TV show. 〜を司会の〜で送る “to broadcast ~ with an MC, ~ (In this case, an MC introduced him/herself.) 私 = 福元 Now, I, Fukumoto, will host the second part (as an MC). Another example This program is sponsored by ABC drink. この番組はABC ドリンクの提供(ていきょう)でお送りいたします。 03最初のコーナーは歌手と歌う<—-最初のコーナー は。。。 も 分かりません The first part (of the show) 04無事にこなせば退学取り消せるんだぞ?<—- こなせば = 来なせば??? こなす= to manage, to handle 05たった一回勝てばクリアできるのになぜ勝てない!!<—- 良く分からない Is the speaker talking about a computer game or something? Let’s break this down. ~verb ばVできる =conditional : “If you do something, you can ~ ” So the speaker is talking about the condition which is たった一回勝てばクリアできる I (or Someone) can complete (or finish) the game if I (or someone) just win once のに = but なぜ勝てない How come I (or someone) can’t win??? (showing his/her frustration)

      • jehdal says:

        hi maggie 先生
        お返事は本当にありがとう  いつもびっくりしました
        説明したあとで良く分かる ありがとう
        04 if I to handle safely, would revoke the expulsion from school <—-正しいですか

        も一度  ありがとう

  150. 紅きうさぎ says:

    AがBに動詞してくれた A did Verb for B
    Aが Bに動詞してもらった A got B to do…V
    Is it better to use one instead of the other?

    • Maggie says:


      〜てくれる VS ~てもらう

      EX. 彼が宿題を手伝ってくれた。 He helped my homework. (He gave me favor of helping my homework) You are focusing on him showing your appreciation.
      EX. 彼に宿題を手伝ってもらった。I got him to help my homework. (You are focusing on yourself who got his help.)

      • 紅き兎 says:


        • Maggie says:


  151. aj1986k says:


    What does ならざる mean? I’ve seen a few sentences illustrating it’s usage but the meaning escapes me.

    • Maggie says:


      ~ざる is an old/literal way of saying “ない” to make a negative form.
      ならざる= ならない
      Also there is an expression
      ~ざるを得ない= have to do something
      Ex. 強くならざるを得ない
      = I have to be strong. (There is no other choice. )

  152. Zetsuboumanadeshi says:


    I may have a lesson request. I’ve been hearing these types of negative sentences everywhere, and I don’t quite know how they differ from the normal negative form in terms of use and meaning.
    1. -ん Form, as in 飲まん
    2. -ず Form, as in 飲まず
    3. -ぬ Form, as in 飲まぬ

    I guess it’s better for a lesson somewhen than answering it here, isn’t it?


    • Maggie says:


      Hello!!! Zetsuboumanadeshi!
      I could add that on the request list but the list is getting longer and it may take a long time to make a lesson so I will try to answer here a little.

      The negative form of 飲む is 飲まない
      But as you said there are other negative forms 1,2,3.

      ★〜ぬ This is a very old usage and you only see/hear this in old proverbs or Samurai dramas now.

      やる to do→やらない not to do→やらぬ
      くる to come →こない not to do→こぬ

      Ex. 鳴かぬなら 鳴かしてみよう・鳴くまで待とう・殺してしまえ ホトトギス 
      = Nakanu nara nakashite miyou/nakumade natou/koroshite shimae hototogisu.
      (This is a famous haiku poem of Hideyoshi, Ieyasu and Nobunaga and to show the difference in heir character)

      If a bird refused to sing for him, try to make it sing / wait for it to sing / kill it.

      ★〜ず You may see/hear this one more than other two

      勉強する to study →勉強しない not to study →勉強せず

      Ex. うちの子供は勉強せずに遊んでばかりいる。
      = My child is always playing without studying.

      Ex. 一日中、何も飲まずに過ごした。
      = Ichinichijuu, nanimo nomazu ni sugoshita.
      = I spent all day without drinking anything.

      Ex. 食べず嫌い
      = Tabezu girai
      = The food that you don’t like before you even try it.


      The pattern is the same as ぬ
      やる to do→やらない not to do→やらぬ→やらん
      くる to come →こない not to do→こぬ→こん

      I wonder where you get this. I guess there are many dialects with this this negative form.

      Ex. 朝から何も食べんけどどうしたの?(dialect)
      = Asa kara nani mo taben kedo doushitano?
      = What is wrong with you? You haven’t eaten anything since this morning.

      But again we don’t use this in modern Japanese besides dialects unless you quote old saying.
      If I can think of a good example. :)

      • Zetsuboumanadeshi says:

        Thank you for your quick answer. You might not be aware of it, but these forms are everywhere , at least in the media. Of course I try to learn japanese to understand movies and anime, both old and contemporary, so many of my questions come from there. I know the language used in anime can be extravagant, but in general it’s a great way of learning Japanese, and your site is the best help I’ve got so far.

        I can give you some examples that I found for the -ぬ and -ん form that are not from samurai movies.

        My very young japanese teacher wrote to me: 風邪など引かぬようお元気で。

        From the anime Ghost in a shell, the famous Batou uses the -ん Form all the time: それにしてもこいつの目的は何だ?目的地も判らんし。
        Also some CEO, both forms in one sentence: わしは、剣菱自体を明日に残さねばならんのだ。

        From the anime barakamon, which takes place on an island, where the people speak the wildest dialect I’ve ever heard that defies any grammatical rule I’ve ever learned. So this is indeed dialect: 誰も分かってくれん。Truly…

        From the animemovie neko no ongaeshi, one cat says: いい機会かもしれん。He’s a catbaron, so that might be the reason. But you have to learn catjapanese too, don’t you agree :)

        • Maggie says:

          Thank you for your examples. That helps understand your question more because there are many ways of using ぬ and ん

          1) 風邪など引かぬようお元気で。
          These are kind of polite set phrases for the greetings.
          When you write formal letter or quote some saying, we use this type of ぬ.

          But this form is not for conversation. We say ない/ません much more.

          2) Expressions in old saying
          腹が減っては戦はできぬ = An army marches on its stomach. (You can’t fight on an empty stomach)

          So when we quote this type of saying we use it even in daily conversation.

          Ex. 何か食べなくては。腹が減っては戦はできぬと言うじゃない。
          You gotta eat something. As we say ~~~

          3) title of books, songs, some special expressions.

          For example instead of saying 変わらない愛 love which won’t change forever , we say 変わらぬ愛 because sounds more literal.

          So basically ぬ is an old/or literal form of ない.
          There are many old Japanese grammar that we use for literal expressions and but some of them are outdated.

          今日は何も食べない = I won’t eat anything today.

          If you change this ない to ぬ
          People think you watch too much Samurai drama.


          I see. That type of ん.

          わからない →わからん

          1) As I mentioned before, it’s originally a dialect for many regions in Japan. But since many people use/hear, it gets familiar so that people use it in anime, movies, etc. and in conversation.

          2) Now

          This type of ん is for old man.(As you can see “わし”)

          So anyway, as you said, it is good to understand how/when people use this.

          in written form

          OK, I think I made a little lesson here anyway. I gotta go now. Bye!

          • Zetsuboumanadeshi says:

            さすが、マギー先生はレッスンのことは朝飯前です。僕はこの時間にせいぜい日本語の夢を見ます。 :zzzz2:

            :maggie-small: !formingheart3!

          • Maggie says:



  153. 天人 says:

    ここ、暑すぎて死にそう、これ以上溜まらん! その月の初めからずっと30度以上orz。冷蔵庫の中に入るような気分になちゃって・・・。マギーの居場所もそんなに暑いかいなー。

    1. Do you use sometimes in modern Japanese べくは/べくんば? According “現代語でも,文語的表現として用いられることがある。”, but I have never seen this before. I found out that it means …するはずであるならば/…することができるならば, and found also an example:
    助くべくは、すなわち助けよ。 If you can help (me/them/him/her, etc.), then just do it! (Is my translation correct?).
    Could you please make 2 sentences using べくは/べくんば?

    2. The form べくして~ない/~がたい implies することはできても/するのは可能であるとしても. Please check, if I translated the sentences below correctly.
    a) その本は読むべくして理解しがたい。 Of course you can read this book – it’s easy, but it’s hard to understand it.
    b) そのような事は言うべくして行いがたい。 Saying such things is so easy, but carrying it out is much harder.
    c) 地球環境を守れとは誰も言う。しかし、なすべくしてなし得ないままでいる。 Everyone says “We must protect the environment of our planet!!!”. However, everyone just keeps doing nothing, like nothing could be done about it.
    (This なすべくしてなし得ないままでいる was a bit hard to translate, だけどそれにしてもやったぞッ! IMPORTANT THING! If you have another idea how to translate it then please do it!).

    3. The form 動詞A:原形+べくして+動詞A implies 当然であるという状況で. Please check, if I translated the sentences below correctly.
    a) よき伝統というものは、残るべくして残ったのだ。 A good tradition is a tradition that survives everything (I don’t know how to translate 残るべくして残った. Perhaps “must remain alive”?).
    b) ローマ帝国は滅ぶべくして滅んだのだ。 The Roman Empire just waited to be destroyed / just had to be destroyed.
    c) 今日の民族紛争は、起こるべくして起こっていると言える。 We can say that the modern-day ethnic conflicts are waiting to happen.
    d) 僕たちふたりは、生まれる前から、赤い糸で結ばれていたんだ。そして出会うべくして出会ったんだよ。 Our souls are destined before we even have been born. So, we had to met each other, it just waited to happen.
    e) 潔く負けを認めよう。この試合は負けるべくして負けたのだ。 Accept your defeat with good grace! Your defeat, it was just destined to happen.

    なのです ^ ^

    • Maggie says:



      1. No. We don’t use べくは・べくんば (especially べくんば)in modern Japanese unless you quote old saying such as Chinese classics, Analects of Confucius.etc.

      2. Fine but if there are other options…

      a) Though You can read that book, it is hard to understand.
      c) We should (take an action and) do something but actually we remain doing nothing.
      d) Fine (or “We were brought together for a reason”)
      We were supposed to lose this game anyway. / We deserved to lose this game

      • 天人 says:

        Thank you very much, Maggie!
        37〜38度 would kill me for sure…
        I understand that in the rest of my translations you wouldn’t change anything, right?
        And… could you please make 2 sentences using べくは or べくんば, so that I could gain a better insight into this form?
        Such archaic forms are really cool  !onpu!

        • Maggie says:


          Since we only see べくは and べくんば in classic Japanese, Chinese classic, Analects of Confucius, I can’t make a example sentence. Even if I try to make one, it won’t work because the rest of the sentence should be “classic Japanese” as well.
          I will attach what I found..You will get the idea.
          ゆく蛍雲のうへまでいぬべくは秋風ふくと雁につげこせ 暮れがたき夏の日ぐらしながむればそのこととなくものぞ悲しき (From 伊勢物語)


          The only word that I found that you may be able to make a sentence with it is
          But still, if you use it, it sounds strange in conversation or writing.

  154. ocd says:

    Hello. I’ve got a question. I often see people writing verb + no + noun, it makes me confused a little bit. For ex.: 見せるの気持ち (the feeling of the show)? Does by adding no to the verb it turns into noun or?

    • ocd says:


      • Maggie says:


        That should be 「輝いてみせるという気持ち」
        Either way verb plain form + の+ noun form sounds strange.
        I have to see the original text.

        • ocd says:

          The original sentence is 一番輝いて見せるの気持ちでステージに立ちました.

          • Maggie says:


            I see. But it is still grammatically wrong. It should be 一番、輝いてみせるという気持ちでステージに立ちました。
            I assume you got it from someone’s blog? Just take it as a very colloquial usage. “一番、輝いてみせる”の気持ち

  155. Daine says:

    日本語の愛好家はマギー先生が必要です。 !heartsippai!

  156. Courtney says:

    Hi Maggie sensei, quick question…what is the difference between はじまる and はじめる I know they both mean to begin or to start but is there any rules to determine when to properly use one or the other? Thank you in advance :)

    • Maggie says:


      Hi Courtney

      はじまる is an intransitive verb Something がはじまる = Something starts
      Ex. 夏休みが始まる= Natsuyasumi ga hajimaru = Summer vacation will start/has started.

      はじめる is a transitive verb Someoneがsomethingをはじめる = Someone starts something (Sometimes we skip the subject)
      Ex. 日本語の勉強を始める=Nihongo no benkyou wo hajimeru = To start to study Japanese.

  157. The river puppy says:

    Hello Maggie Sensei! I have recently been reading your saseru/saserareru causative lesson that I had been trying to understand for so long. I know what passive form is now but I still don’t quite understand causative form.

    So, first of all, for suru verbs, I read that it would be like Benkyou saseru (Make somebody study) and Benkyou saserareru (To be made to study) which I thought made sense since it was similar to passive form, which would be benkyou sareru. So, I moved on and eventually came to read how Nomu would be conjugated.

    It was Nomaseru and Nomaserareru. This made sense because it was just like passive form. Make nai form and then attach reru, only for causative form it would be seru. It just began to make sense when the next sentence read, “Sakuya, joushi ni takusan noma(SA)reta.” which was written to mean, I was forced to drink alot by my superiors last night.


    What is nomasareta?????? Wouldn’t it be nomaserareta?????? It was never in the lesson description. I read Nomaseru and Nomaserareru. There was no Nomasareta. So, feeling extremely confused, I continued the lesson and discovered that you only included examples for u-verbs. I know passive form for a ru-verb, say taberu, would be taberareru but what if I were to make a causative form of it? (To force somebody to eat and to be forced to eat)

    Basically, my questions are:
    1. How do you make causative form for a RU verb?
    2. What is nomasaseru? Passive is Nomareru and to force somebody is Nomaseru and to be forced by somebody is Nomaserareru. But what is nomasaseru?

    3. Also, I have a questions about passive form. Is there a difference between sareta and shita. For example, I know you can say yomareta hon to mean “A book that was read” but what if I said Yonda hon “A read book” doesn’t that mean the same thing?

    Compare these two:
    Sentaku sareta fuku—Clothes that were washed
    Sentaku shita fuku—Washed clothes

    Under what circumstances would we use one over the other?

    4. Lastly, is there such a thing as causative benefit—sasete ageru? For example, a person’s father made him change his bad attitude. It was a forced action but it was for the son’s benefit. So would we use sasete ageru in this case? (Or does it not exist) Also, the father is doing the forcing and the son is doing the changing so how would it be written?

    “His father forced him to change his bad attitude for his own good”.

    Thanks, that’s all my questions for now! XD
    Thanks for everything so far! XD
    いつもありがとうございます! XD

    • Maggie says:

      @The river puppy

      Hi there,

      Q 1 & 2)
      I think someone else asked me the same (or similar) question in past.
      Sorry. I made this lesson long time ago and at that time, I didn’t go too far but here’s the thing.

      The causative form of 飲む is one of the special ones. There are two forms (1) & (2) .

      飲む →飲ませる (1) to force someone to drink →飲ませられる to be forced to drink  →(past tense) 飲ませられた
      飲む→飲ます(2) to force someone to drink →飲まされる to be forced to drink →(past tense) 飲まされた

      Other verbs which has two forms


      How to make causative verb with ru-verb

      1) make ます form 食べます
      2) delete ます →食べ
      3 – A) add させる →食べさせる
      * passive
      add させられる→食べさせられる

      a) Yomareta hon / Sentaku sareta fuku

      The main issue is a book/ clothes and yomareta and sentaku sareta modifies the noun, a book & clothes

      b) Yonda hon / Sentaku shita fuku

      They may look the same but while you don’t have to know who read the book or who washed the clothes in a),

      b) Yonda hon / Sentaku shita fuku clarifies who read the book/washed the clothes.

      Ex. 読んだ本はここに置いて下さい。
      = Please leave the books after you read / the books that you read here.

      Ex. 洗濯した服はいつも引き出しにしまう。
      I always put back the clothes that I washed.

      You can’t replace these sentences with 読まれた本(=Yomareta hon) / 洗濯された服(=sentaku sareta fuku)

      Q4) Yes but not always forcing someone to do something.

      We use させてあげる (やる) when you let someone do something or when you do something for someone for their favor

  158. Zetsuboumanadeshi says:

    マギイイイイーーーーーーーーーーーーーー !ohisama! ,

    It’s been 40°C here today, so I took the opportunity of learning the ice and freeze kanji to counter my melting !softcream! . But there are more verbs for freezing than my brain can handle, maybe you could explain the different meanings or uses to me.

    凍る こおる
    凍える こごえる
    凍みる しみる
    凍み付く しみつく
    凍てる いてる
    凍て付く いてつく


    • Maggie says:


      Hi Zetsuboumanadeshi! (Wait, does your name is from 絶望愛弟子??)
      Anyway yes, it has been super hot here in Japan but 40°C???

      凍る こおる
      凍える こごえる
      凍みる しみる
      凍み付く しみつく
      凍てる いてる
      凍て付く いてつく

      Basically they all mean “freezing, to freeze”

      *凍る  when water freezes and changes form into ice. to get icy
      Ex. 水が凍る water freezes ,Ex. 道が凍る the road gets icy

      *凍える when you feel freezing

      Ex. 凍えるような寒さ freezing cold

      Ex. 寒さが身に凍みる the translation is the same as above, freezing cold but it s often used when you describe the cold temperature penetrates your body.

      *凍み付く しみつく to be frozen to

      Kind of poetic expression. It gets icy and harder.
      Ex. 雪が凍み付く


      Ex. 凍て付く寒さ= freezing cold (Similar to Ex. 凍えるような寒さ freezing cold)

      I am getting cooler now.

  159. The river puppy says:

    おかえりなさいマギー先生!Sorry I said this a bit late.

  160. 天人 says:

    Hello, Maggie!
    I hope you are now full of energy after your vacations ^o^
    I’ve got a few questions about 分.

    1. I don’t understand how 分 is used in this part ==> “それに相当するもの、それに見合うものの意を表す。「増加分」「苦労分」「五日分」”.

    2.Kotobank says that 分 is also used as: それだけのこと/だけ, could you make 2~3 example sentences?

    3. Please check, if I translated a) – f) correctly:
    a) 分に応じて in proportion to / according to one’s duty.
    b) 己の分を尽くす to fulfill one’s obligations / duty.
    c) …をその分とする to take it as a duty (EX: 学生は学問をその分とする。).
    d) 分を守る to defend one’s (social) status.
    e) 分に安んずる to be contend (/happy) with one’s (social) status.
    f) 分に過ぎる to be above one’s abilities.

    4. Do you know any other constructions with 分 like in question 3?


    • Maggie says:


      Again thank you so much for answering questions here while I was gone.
      Yes, I had a very nice vacation and got more energy now. :)

      1) It means “a ration of ~” “”in proportion to” “as much as ~”

      *増加分(=増加した分) as much as something has increased / increases
      Ex. 1) 費用の増加分を本社が負担する。

      *苦労分 →I know it is listed in the dictionary but we usually use with a verb. 苦労した分 , 苦労させた分、etc.
      Ex. 2) このケーキは作るのが大変だったけれども苦労した分、美味しいね。

      *5日分 We use this often. (some amount) equivalent for five days
      Ex. 3) 3日分のお薬を出しておきます。

      Ex. 働いた分だけお金がもらえる。
      = 働いただけの(分の)お金がもらえる
      Ex. You can change the example 2)

      3. a) ~ f) Good!
      Just one thing that I would add is,
      f) It is a humble expression. “more than one deserves”