Say What You Really Mean in Japanese!

There are many different ways to tell people how you are feeling. Japanese is full of nuances that you must be aware of to get your point across. An interesting example is that you can say, “she chased me,” in Japanese. However, if you want to tell someone that you were chased and found it annoying, you must say, “I was chased by her.” This one example demonstrates just how crucial it is that you structure your sentences correctly. Otherwise, your true meaning might get left behind. This Lower Intermediate Japanese article shows you a variety of nuanced words that you’ll use to convey emotions. Learn when to use the passive voice to say what you really mean. Master words such as niramareru (“to watch and beware of”) and a number of passive forms of phrases that allow you to express your feelings. This is truly one of the most important Japanese articles yet!

Vocabulary: In this article, you’ll learn the following words and phrases:

damasu – “to trick, to cheat”

niramareru – “fall into disfavor with”

honki ni suru – “take __ seriously”

mizu ni nagasu – “to forget everything, to write it off”

o-seibo – “year-end gift”

konomi – “liking, taste, choice, type”

Grammar: In this article, you’ll learn the following words and phrases:

In some cases, passive sentences don’t have corresponding active sentences. Today’s grammar point focuses on such cases.

Today’s example (1) below can be said in the active voice. However, it implies “damage” or something “troublesome” to the person receiving the action. So, as in this case, to express that a person is somewhat affected by an action done by the other person, the passive sentence would be more natural than the active one.
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Today’s Example (1):
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  1. Passive Sentence: O-mae ni wa, moo, damasarenai. “I will not be cheated by you anymore.” Active sentence: O-mae wa, m, boku o damasanai. “You will not cheat me anymore.

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Other Examples:
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  1. Passive Sentence: Boku wa, kanojo ni oikakerareta. “I was chased by her.” Active sentence: Kanojo wa, boku o oikaketa. “She chased me.”

The passive sentence above implies that “he was annoyed by her action of chasing,” while the active sentence is a neutral expression.

In today’s example (2), niramareru is the passive voice of the verb niramu, which means “to watch and beware of someone” or “to stare at.” In most cases, when we use it to mean, “to watch and beware of someone,” it is in the passive voice. For example, “[a person to beware of] wa [someone] ni niramareru. “ When we use it to mean “to stare at,” it can be in the passive voice.
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Today’s Example (2):
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  1. Passive Sentence: Ore wa, are kara buchoo ni niramarete taihen datta n da zo! “I have been in a tough situation since then because I fell into disfavor with the boss.” Active sentence: Are kara buchoo ga ore o nirande taihen datta n da zo.

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Uzumaki Naruto

Author: Uzumaki Naruto

Expert tips before traveling Japan, including reviews of Japanese food and restaurants to help you make your trip as enjoyable and rewarding as possible.

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