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Japanese Grammar
Welcome to the 8th lesson about Japanese grammar. We will first learn about prepositions, negation,
questions, adverbs, and pronouns including: personal, object and possessive pronouns. To hear the
pronunciation, just click on the sound icon.
We will start with prepositions. In general, they are used to link words to other words. For example: I speak
Japanese and English the preposition is [and] because it connects both words Japanese and English. The
following is a list of the most used prepositions in Japanese.
Prepositions Japanese Pronunciation
and [to]
above [ue ni]
under [shita ni]
before [mae ni]
after [ushiro ni]
in front of [mae ni]
behind [ushiro ni]
far from [kara hanare te]
near [no chikaku ni]
in [no naka de]
inside [no uchigawa de]
outside [no sotogawa de]
with [to]
without [nashi de]
about [yaku]
between [no aida ni]
but [shikashi]
for [no tame ni]
from [kara]
to [ni]
Preposition Grammar Rules
The following examples use prepositions in different ways and places to demonstrate how they behave in a
sentence.
Prepositions + Rules Japanese + Pronunciation
I eat without a knife
[preposition + noun]

[watashi wa naifu nashi de tabe masu]
she lives near the church
[verb + preposition]

[kanojo wa kyoukai no chikaku ni sun de i masu]
he is taller than her
[adjective + preposition]

[kare wa kanojo yori se ga takai desu]
he came with his small dog
[preposition + pronoun]

[kare wa kare no chiisana inu o tsure te ki mashi ta]
can you come with me?
[preposition + pronoun]

[watashi to issho ni ko rare masu ka?]
Negation in Japanese
Now let's learn how to make a negative sentence (negation). For example: Saying no, I can't, I don't ... The
following examples use negation in different ways and places to demonstrate how they behave in a sentence.
Negation + Rules Japanese + Pronunciation
I understand you
[affirmative form]

[watashi wa anata no koto o rikai shi te i masu]
I don't understand you
[negation + verb]

[watashi ni wa anata ga wakari mase n]
this is not the correct word
[negation + adjective]

[kore wa tadashii kotoba de wa ari mase n]
don't leave me
[imperative negation]

[watashi o oi te ika nai de kudasai]
no problem
[negation + noun]

[mondai ari mase n]
Negative Sentences Japanese + Pronunciation
I don't speak French
[negation + present tense]

[watashi wa furansugo ga hanase mase n]
she didn't visit Germany
[negation + past tense]

[kanojo wa doitsu ni iki mase n deshi ta]
he cannot see us
[negative modal verb]

[kare ni wa watashi tachi ga mie mase n]
can't she play chess?
[interrogative negation]

[kanojo wa chesu ga deki nai no desu ka?]
we will not come late
[negation + future tense]

[watashi tachi ga osoku kuru koto wa ari mase n]
Questions in Japanese
Now let's learn how to ask questions (interrogative). Such as: what, why, can you ...? Here are some common
examples:
English Japanese Pronunciation
how? [dono you ni?]
what? [nani ga?]
who? [dare ga?]
why? [naze?]
where? [doko?]
More of the interrogative form, now in a sentence:
Questions + Rules Japanese + Pronunciation
where do you live?
[interrogative + verb]

[anata wa doko ni sun de iru no desu ka?]
does she speak Chinese?
[interrogative verb]

[kanojo wa chuugokugo ga hanase masu ka?]
how much is this?
[interrogative preposition]

[kore wa ikura desu ka?]
can I help you?
[interrogative modal verb]

[nani ka o komari desu ka?]
what is your name?
[interrogative preposition]

[o namae wa nan desu ka?]
Adverbs in Japanese
It's time to learn the adverbs in Japanese. But what is an adverb? In general, adverbs modify verbs and
adjectives. For example: You speak fast. The adverb is [fast] because it describes the verb and answers the
question how do you speak?. Here is a list of the most common ones:
Adverbs Japanese Pronunciation
now [ima]
yesterday [kinou]
today [kyou]
tonight [konya]
tomorrow [ashita]
soon [mousugu]
quickly [hayaku]
slowly [yukkuri]
together [issho ni]
very [totemo]
almost [hotondo]
always [itsumo]
usually [tsuujou]
sometimes [tokidoki]
rarely [mare ni]
never [kesshite]
The following examples use the adverbs in different ways and places to demonstrate how it behaves in a
sentence.
Adverbs + Rules Japanese + Pronunciation
do you understand me now?
[pronoun + adverb]

[ima wa, watashi no koto ga wakari masu ka?]
I need help immediately
[noun + adverb]

[watashi wa, ima sugu ni tasuke ga hitsuyou desu]
she is very intelligent
[adverb + adjective]

[kanojo wa totemo chiteki desu]
I will always love you
[verb + adverb]

[itsu datte aishi te i masu]
can we learn German together?
[adverb in a question]

[issho ni doitsu go o manabi mase n ka?]
Pronouns in Japanese
We're almost done! This time we will learn the pronouns in Japanese. In general, a pronoun can be used
instead of a noun. For example instead of saying my teacher speaks 3 languages, you can use the pronoun he,
and say he speaks 3 languages. Here is a list of the most common ones:
Personal Pronouns Japanese Pronunciation
I [watashi wa]
you [anata wa]
he [kare wa]
she [kanojo wa]
we [watashi tachi wa]
they [karera wa]
Object Pronouns Japanese Pronunciation
me [watashi o]
you [anata o]
him [kare o]
her [kanojo o]
us [watashi tachi o]
them [karera o]
Possessive Pronouns Japanese Pronunciation
my [watashi no]
your [anata no]
his [kare no]
her [kanojo no]
our [watashi tachi no]
their [karera no]
I think it's better to put the above example in a sentence to better assist you. The following examples use
pronouns in different ways and places to demonstrate how they behave in a sentence. We will start with the
personal pronouns.
Personal Pronouns Japanese + Pronunciation
I am your friend
[1st pronoun + verb]

[watashi wa anata no tomodachi desu]
you speak very fast
[2nd pronoun + adverb]

[anata wa totemo hayakuchi desu]
he has three dogs
[3rd pronoun + verb]
3
[kare wa inu o san biki kat te i masu]
she can speak German
[3rd pronoun + verb]

[kanojo wa doitsu go o hanase masu]
we will not come late
[1st plural pronoun]

[watashi tachi ga osoku kuru koto wa ari mase n]
they bought milk and bread
[3rd plural pronoun]

[karera wa, miruku to pan o kai mashi ta]
The object pronoun is used as a target by a verb, and usually come after that verb. For example: I gave him
my book. The object pronoun here is him. Here are more examples:
Object Pronouns Japanese + Pronunciation
can you tell me your name?
[1st object pronoun] [anata no namae o oshie te morae masu ka?]
I will give you money
[2nd object pronoun]

[okane o age masho u]
she wrote him a letter
[3rd object pronoun]

[kanojo wa kare ni tegami o kaki mashi ta]
they visited her yesterday
[3rd object pronoun]

[karera wa kinou kanojo o tazune mashi ta]
can she help us?
[1st pl. object pronoun]

[kanojo ga watashi tachi o tasuke rare masu ka?]
he gave them food
[3rd pl. object pronoun]

[kare wa karera ni tabemono o age mashi ta]
Possessive Pronouns Japanese + Pronunciation
my name is Maya
[1st possessive pronoun]

[watashi no namae wa maya desu]
your brother lives here
[2nd possessive pronoun]

[anata no kyoudai wa koko ni sun de i masu]
her mother cooks for us
[3rd possessive pronoun]

[kanojo no hahaoya wa watashi tachi ni ryouri o tsukut te kure mashi ta]
his hobby is reading books
[3rd possessive pronoun]

[kare no shumi wa dokusho desu]
our dream is to visit Paris
[1st pl. possessive pronoun]

[watashi tachi no yume wa, pari ni iku koto desu]
their house is not far
[3rd pl. possessive pronoun]

[karera no ie wa tooku de wa ari mase n]
One more thing you need to know is the demonstrative pronouns. They're very easy to learn.
Demonstrative Pronouns Japanese Pronunciation
this is my house [kore wa watashi no ie desu]
that restaurant is far [sono resutoran wa tooi desu]
these apples are delicious [kono ringo wa oishii desu]
those stars are shiny [sorera no hoshi wa kagayai te i masu]
I hope you learned a lot about the Japanese grammar in this lesson. If you have any question about this lesson
please contact me here. The next lesson is below, have fun!
Japanese Phrases Japanese Vocabulary
Inspirational Quote: First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. Epictetus