Verb Course

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Marshall
JLPT Basic, JLPT Course
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Verb Course

Past Tense Form

In this lesson,I will teach you how to convert Japanese verbs to Past Tense Form.

type-one verb

If the verb is a type-one verb, you can change it to Past Tense Form like below.

PatternHow to convert?
○う、○つ、○るchange う/つ/る to  った.

Examples:
う→った 
  (Meaning: to meet)
つ→った  
(Meaning: to beat)
やる→やった  
(Meaning: to do)
○く、○ぐchange く to いた, change ぐ to  いだ.

Examples:
く→いた   (Meaning: to write)
ぐ→いだ   (Meaning: to smell)
○ぬ、○ぶ、○むchange ぬ/ぶ/む to  んだ.

Examples:
ぬ→んだ   (Meaning: to die)
ぶ→んだ   (Meaning: to call)
む→んだ   (Meaning: to read)
○すchange す to  した.

す→した   (Meaning: to press)
はなす→はなした   (Meaning: to talk)
こわす→こわした   (Meaning: to break)
行く(the only exception)く→った   (Meaning: to go)

type-two verb & type-three verb & irregular verb

If the verb is a type-two verb, you can change it to Past Tense Form like this.

Verb TypeHow to convert?
type-two verbChange る to た.

Examples:
べる→べた   (Meaning: to eat)
りる→りた   (Meaning: to get down)
きる→きた   (Meaning: to wake up)
type-three verbChange する to した.

Examples:
べんきょうする→べんきょうした   (Meaning: to learn)
結婚けっこんする→結婚けっこんした   (Meaning: to marry)
連絡れんらくする→連絡れんらくした   (Meaning: to come through)
irregular verbChange する to した   (Meaning: to do)

Change る to た   (Meaning: to come)

Example Sentences:

JapaneseEnglish
わたししょうせつんだ。I read the novel.
かれ宿しゅくだいをやった。He finished the homework.
彼女かのじょみずんだ。She drank the water.
わたしたちは学校がっこうった。We went to the school.
かれらは結婚けっこんした。They got married.

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24 thoughts on “Past Tense Form

  1. 1. やる-> u-verb does it mean it needs to change to u-verb or is it a u-verb
    2. Only have one exception right? (行く-> 行った)

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      1.It is a u-verb
      2.Yes

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  2. I feel so dumb for asking but I don’t quite understand the table 😅

    Thanks in advance 💙

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      I added an explanation, does it make sense now?

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  3. Yes! Thank you so much and sorry for the trouble 😅
    Your website is the best so far when it comes to helping me learn Japanese. Keep it up! 💙

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      You are welcome!

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  4. Thanks for the explainations! However I still didn’t get the rule for u-verbs. Reply would be appreciated

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      Could you please tell me where you can’t understand?

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  5. I cannot understand why 押す became 押した

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      To be honest, it’s not something to “understand”, it’s a rule to “remember”, just remember that when you find the verb like xx-す, then past tense will be xx-した. It’s just like “I cannot understand why like became liked”, no one knows, but we use it everyday.

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  6. I don’t quite get the other u-rule verbs 😓 like 会うchanges to 会った while 書く changes to 書いた
    う=った and く= いた 🤷🏻‍♀️ I don’t quite get how did it change to that same goes to the other u-verbs that doesn’t ends with う

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      Just change it based on the hiragana in the end. If you saw a verb like xx-く,and you want to change it to past tense form, just change く to いた, and that’s all.

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    2. Thanks so much

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  7. 1 question, about the んだ when do you use it?

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      When there is ぬ/ぶ/む in the end, use んだ

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  8. In the first part of the explanation (the explanation of う-verbs) you accidentally put #1 to the second part of the explanation too. (う-verbs that end with く/ぐ)

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      Sorry I can’t find what you said, Could you please provide more details or a screenshot if possible?

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    2. There are segments of each explanation of how to convert different verbs to them to past tense.

      The first segment is the u-verbs.
      Within this segment there are u-verbs which have different hiragana endings, thus different rules apply to each group.

      You mention the first group of u-verbs (marked #1): these ones end with う, つ or る and there are the rules on how to convert them etc.

      Then you bring up the second group (here’s the mistake as you marked this one as #1 again): these ones end with く or ぐ and the rules on how to convert them etc.

      The next group is marked with #3 as supposed to be.

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    3. Admin bar avatar

      Oh, I found it and corrected it already! Thank you for your information!

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  9. I don’t understand the special verb part…
    1. する is also part of the special verb besides the 26 others right?
    2. 来る to 来た? Like change u to i and cut the る and put た? How about others? 帰る(かえる) , 要る(いる)?

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      Special verbs are totally irregular, so you should remember them directly.

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  10. Great explainion!
    I wonder if there are any quizs.

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  11. can one use the ‘past of the polite tense ‘ in place of the past tense ?

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    1. Admin bar avatar

      sure!

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