日本語の秘密 14/33


日本語の秘密/ The Key to NIHON-GO

by 岸本建夫 [Kishimoto Tatsuo] 1999
OCR/Corr by most.cyak@gmail.com, Oct 2014


Section 3 Verb Conjugations Conform to a Simple Set of Rules

→ It Isn’t That Difficult to Conjugate the Dictionary Form of Verbs Either

  Since the -masu form is the simplest, we began our explanation with it. However, it isn’t that difficult to conjugate the dictionary form of verbs either.

  1) Kaku Type verbs

   1.Past positive

  To form the past tense of the dictionary form, you only need to add ta to the ending character. So kaku would become kaku-ta. However, to ease articulation, it is changed to kaita by using a liaison. The transformation depends on the ending character which is one of eight characters from the “u” column. For each one of these eight characters, there is only one means of inflection. The u in the “a” line, for example, must change to a small tu and add ta to the ending character in the past tense. Therefore, Au becomes Atta. This rule is illustrated in the following table.

   2. Negative

  In order to form a negative, change the previous ending character to one from the same line in the “a” column and add nai. In the case of kaku, change the ku to a ka (from the same line, in the “a” column) and add nai if it’s in the present tense, or nakatta if it’s in the past tense.

  Let’s take a look at other examples of kaku type verbs.

  ※ When the ending character is u, it transforms into wa, not a.

  2) Miru Type Verbs

  The miru type is simpler to inflect. You just replace the ru with the conjugations of the auxiliary verbs (ta, nai, or nakatta).

  Let’s take a look at other examples of miru type verbs.

  ※ Kuru and Suru

  Kuru and suru are similar to the miru type verbs in the way they replace the ru with the auxiliary verb conjugations (ta, nai, or nakatta). However, there is a slight change in the first character.

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