I strongly encourage you to post any feedback, corrections or suggestions you may have about the guide in this forum, or talk to me directly via IRC ([email protected]) or MSN/WLM (j-pop_addict[at]hotmail.com) if you have any other questions about Japanese.




Grammar Guide Guide Supplements Dissected Source Material
Grammar Part 1: Particles
Essential Vocabulary
Grammar Part 2: Conjugation
Grammar Part 3: Clauses
Grammar Terminology
Confusing Vocabulary
Additional Grammar Topics
Old Japanese
Downloadable Version

E-manga from J-comi


Additional Grammar Topics


As the title implies, this is just a short list of things I think are worth listing or explaining, but don't really fit in anywhere else. At the moment it's extremely short, so there's almost certainly something obvious I've forgotten to include, on top of the fact that I don't know very much about non-Kantou dialects yet (though as of v2.3 my kogo knowledge is decent).


Phrasal Verbs
Formal Verbs
Persistent 古語 kogo
  関西弁 Kansai-ben or 大阪弁 Osaka-ben


Phrasal Verbs


There are very, very few phrasal verbs in Japanese, so what follows is probably close to a comprehensive list.


がする to detect/sense, to hear something
にする to make into _, to make it the case that _, to decide on doing _
[-i form or 事 koto] にする to decide to _, to go with/plan on _ing
になる to become (there is no をなる)
[apparent form] になる to almost do, to become likely that
とする to (hypothetically) assume, if _ were the case
[volitional form] とする to try to do
に決まる to be obvious that, to decide that
と違う to be different from
である to be _, to be the case that _


Formal Words


Several Japanese words have a very specific formal (and longer) synonym, as shown below.  For some reason, most of the “ru” verbs below have an irregular -i form ending in “i” not “ri,” which even doubles as a soft command.  So, expect to see a fair amount of らっしゃい, 下さい and the like.


Normal Verb Formal Equivalent
言う (いう) 申す (もうす) or 仰る (おっしゃる)
くれる 下さる (くださる)
ある ござる
なる なさる
です ございます
いる いっらっしゃる
〜i ます 〜i らっしゃる
行く (いく) 参る (まいる)
〜te ある 〜te おる
何故 (なぜ) 何故 (なにゆえ)
〜te みて 〜te ごらん
どうか 何卒 (なにとぞ)
〜te もらう 〜te いただく
こいつ, そいつ, あいつ, どいつ この方 (かた), その方, あの方, どの方
こなた, そなた, あなた, どなた


Persistent 古語 kogo


古語 kogo is a general term for old forms of Japanese, in contrast with modern Japanese. As of version v2.2, there's a supplemental page all about it since, like many other languages, learning a little about old Japanese helps with understanding modern Japanese. This is partly because it helps explain a lot of the modern language's quirks, but also because most native speakers know a few things about old Japanese and are thus prone to using them even in otherwise modern Japanese. The goal here is to list those things, so you can avoid getting thrown off by them even if you don't care about learning old Japanese.


Before I can simply list all the bits worth knowing, there is one grammar detail that needs explaining. In old Japanese, instead of a single infinitive/nonpast form, there was a separate "predicative form" for verbs/adjectives meant to end a sentence, and an "attributive form" for verbs/adjectives at the end of a clause/phrase meant to describe a noun. The predicative form is the default/infinitive/dictionary form.





Unfortunately, I am not very knowledgeable about dialects. But I can list several things distinctive of Kansai-ben which, I feel, is enough to make the vast majority of lines in that dialect comprehensible. I'll expand this if I ever I get the chance to study dialects properly.


For the record, the 関東弁 Kantou Dialect or 東京弁 Tokyo Dialect is the one I've been teaching you.


関西弁 Kansai Dialect or 大阪弁 Osaka Dialect

That should be enough to make sense out of any random Kansai you come across. There are of course dozens of other minor differences, but the ones listed above are among the most likely to throw you off or genuinely confuse you since they involve forms/particles/words you would never see otherwise.


The thickest, frequently-occuring Kansai dialect I've personally encountered in manga/anime/etc is that of Sket Dance's main heroine Himeko, so I would read some of that if for some reason you really want to learn basic Kansai.