Particle Course

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Marshall
JLPT Basic, JLPT Course
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Particle Course

Case particle 1:が

In this lesson, I will teach you how to use the case particle が.


Function 1: subject marker

If you want to tell people 〇〇 is the subject, Just add が after 〇〇.

Note:

は is also a particle(adverbial particle).
It’s called topic marker.
It means that the noun before it is the topic of this sentence.

When は is a particle, it’s read as “wa”.
は: emphasizes the noun after it.
が: emphasizes the noun before it.

For example, わたしトムです。 I’m Tom.
In this sentence, は emphasizes “Tom”. So you can drop the “私は” too. If you say “トムです”, it also means “I’m Tom.”, It’s just less formal.

わたしトムです。I’m Tom.
In this sentence, が emphasizes “私”. This sentence is often used to answer a question: “Who is Tom?”
So you will answer him: I’m Tom. (It’s not everyone else, It’s me!)
So it will be weird to drop the 私が.

Usually, は is way more often used.
But if you do want to emphasize the subject, feel free to use が, it’s correct too!

Examples:

A: 田中どなたですか。
B: かれ田中たなかです。
A: Who is Tanaka?
B: He is Tanaka.

わたし学生がくせいです。
I’m a student.

わたしほんべんきょうしました。
I learned Japanese.

彼女かのじょかわいいです。
She is cute.

かれわたし友達ともだちです。
They are my friends.

Function 2: express what you want to do

If you want to express that you want to do something, Just use something below.

わたし + Object + + Wish Form of the Verb.

Note:

Sometimes You will find some sentences like below.

わたしみずみたいです。
I want to drink water.

It’s not wrong in modern Japanese. を is the particle to mark the object of verb. (You will learn it later)

Although みたい can be used as an i-adj, like みたいもの, it’s wish form of む too. So there are more and more people use を.
みずみ)たい
みずみたい)

You can even drop the particle in conversation. (But you can’t do that in exam! )

みず みたい

Conclusion:
In Exam and Article: use XX + が + ..たい
In Conversation: が、を or just drop the particle.

Examples:

わたし結果けっかりたいです。
I want to know the result.

わたしえいべんきょうしたいです。
I want to learn English.

わたしアニメたいです。
I want to watch anime.

ほんみたいです。
I want to read books.

にくべたいです。
I want to eat meat.

Function 3: express likes and dislikes

If you want to express what you like and what you don’t like, you can use something like below.

わたし + Noun + + (だいき + です。

わたし + Noun + + (だいきらい + です。

Examples:

わたしあまいものきです。
I like sweet food.

わたし辛いものだいきらいです。
I hate spicy food.

わたしアニメだいきです。
I like anime so much.

宿しゅくだいきらいです。
I don’t like homework.

あなたこときです。
I like you.

Note:

If you want to express the hope of others, you can click the link below to learn it!

https://marshallyin.com/courses/n4-grammar-course/lessons/n4-grammar-rule-2/

Function 4: express the level of skill

If you want to express the level of skill, you can use something like below.

Topic + + Noun + じょうです。
Topic + + Noun + 下手へたです。

Examples:

わたしほん下手へたです。
I’m not good at Japanese.

かれギターじょうです。
He is good at guitar.

彼女かのじょうまいです。
She is good at painting.

かれ数学すうがくすごくじょうです。
He is very good at math.

わたしえいはなのがじょうです。
I’m good at speaking English.

Function 5: express the ability

If you want to express the ability, you can use something like below.

Topic + + Noun + Potential Form of Verb.

Examples:

わたし漢字かんじめます。
I can read kanji.

わたしえいはなせません。
I can’t speak English.

かれうたうたえます。
He can sing songs.

彼女かのじょダンスできます。
She can dance.

わたしくるま運転うんてんできません。
I can’t drive.
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27 thoughts on “Case particle 1:が

  1. So if someone asked “Which of you is Japanese?” it would be more appropriate to use 私が日本人です。but if the question was “What is your nationality?”, it would be better to say 私は日本人です。Is that right?

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      The former is right, but the latter should be “私の国籍(こくせき)は日本です”→My nationality is Japan.

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    2. Does 日本人 refer to ethnicity instead of nationality then?

      0

    3. Admin bar avatar

      That‘s right!

      0

  2. What would be the difference between 使い and 使う?

    0

    1. Look at Noun Form in Verb Course. I think that sentence can be understood as “It’s hard using this pen” where “tsukai” here is “using”. Not really sure about that, could be something else.

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    2. Admin bar avatar

      I have added some details! Hope it helps!

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  3. shoulndt このペンが使つかいにくい be このペン使つかいにくいが since you say that が should be after the verb

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      Where Did you see “The が should be after the Verb”?

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  4. Does emphasise mean 强调重点?

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      Yeah!

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  5. Why are functions 2-6 separate functions when, based on the examples, it seems like が is just being used as a subject marker like in function 1?

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      broadly speaking, yes. But I think dividing these functions is necessary so they won’t get confused when to use は and が.

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  6. For function 2, if given the choice to use が or を which would be preferred?
    What do you mean by wish form?

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  7. Will there be any translations becouse I am not this good with Engish and can’t understand much of that just asking xD

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      I will consider it in the future but It’s English-only now.

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  8. are functions 4 and 5 similar? can I use them as I like most?

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      function 4 is often used with adj(good at Or bad at.)
      function 5 is often used with verb(can do or can’t do)

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  9. がused in likes dislikes, skill describe, what want to do, what you want to do.

    Likes, dislikes :
    私の心はオレンジジュースが好きです
    彼女は青いの瞳が大嫌いですよ

    Skill describe :
    ジルは銃器が上手です
    レジナは戦うが上手です
    こころは数学が下手です
    レイバンは読むことが下手です
    シャバは死ぬのが上手です
    アシュリーは泣くことが上手です

    To be continued…

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    1. What you want to do:

      日本が行きたいね
      韓国が行きたくないね
      中国が行きたかった
      あなたの本が読みたい
      中にノートが書きたいね
      強いことがたいです

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    2. Express the ability:
      私は水が飲めです。
      エイダはレヨンが殺せる。
      彼女は部(へ) 屋(や) が眠(ねむ) れる。
      エイダはジルの部屋が眠れない。
      リザはリズムができる
      クリスチはリズムができません。

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  10. Hi! In the function 2 of the particle there´s this example:
    私たしは水を飲みたいです. Why do you put です at the end of the wish form?
    Thank you for everything!

    2+

    1. Admin bar avatar

      です is more polite. It’s okay to say it without です. But if you are talking to your superior, you’d better use です

      3+

  11. Hi Marshall!
    Can you explain the purpose of the parenthesis and how the two are different?
    (水みずを飲み)たい
    水みずが(飲みたい)
    Does it mean that the ~たい modifies (水みずを飲み)instead of just 飲み?
    Thanks!

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      They are the same. I just want to explain why it’s okay to use を as well as が.

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  12. In the last function, the potential one.. Is を applicable? When do we use が for the potential form? On exam and articles?

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      You can use を, but more people use が.

      1+

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