Translation:No, I am not Japanese.
"~ga arimasen" means "there is/are no ~/there is/are not ~" in the sense of does not exist (however, instead of "arimasen", "imasen" is used for living beings).
"~de wa arimasen" means "I/you/he/she/it/we/they/someone/something is not/no ~" in the sense of negating a characteristic of something/someone.
It looks like it originally was:
- -で (=the -て form after a noun. Often this can be translated as “being” or “as”, for example: 学生で妊娠する “to get pregnant as/while being a student”)
- -は (the topic particle)
- ありません “doesn’t exist”
So basically something along the lines of “(Subject) does not exist as an x”. However at least today it’s pretty much a fixed ending. If it weren’t you would expect いません rather than ありません when the subject is animate, but in practice it’s always ありません. (Unless maybe it should be interpreted as “[the fact of] (subject) being x does not exist”? If so, I would have expected to see a filler verb after -で, maybe: -でいる/あるの(こと)はありません. But maybe that verb got deleted as the phrase turned into a fixed ending? I don’t know.)
がありません basically means the (object) plus が (particle to state object as affected) ありません (there is not), "there" being an important aspect of this. If this made any sense, it is basically saying, "There is no pencil".
ではありません differs in the sense that it is the negative form of です。Whilst desu means "is" in a sense, dewa arimasen is the equivalent of "is not"．
Here are some examples. えんぴつがありません There is no pencil
えんぴつです It's a pencil
えんぴつではありません It's not a pencil
I'm far from an expert, but here's what I understand:
- か (ga) marks the subject of the sentence (the person doing the action)
- を (o) marks the direct object of the sentence
- は (wa) marks the topic of the sentence
The topic takes the place of the subject once the subject has been introduced. Marking the topic allows you to omit that noun in subsequent sentences.
The basic flow goes:
- introduce subject using か
- mark it as the topic using は (i.e. in the best sentence)
- omit it from future sentences (it is now implied)
Here's an article on the subject:
「じゃないです」 is also correct. I would say it is slightly more informal than 「ではありません」 and more formal than 「じゃない」. Often 「です」 is used as a word to express politeness rather than being used as a copula. (I believe that is why i-adjectives take です in their long form, as you can see from their plain form that a copula is not needed, unlike na-adjectives where the short form does take a copula).
You can tap on parts of the sentence and it will tell you what they mean by themselves. In this case: いいえ(no)、日本人(Japanese person)ではありません(not be (polite)). So more literally: “No, [implied subject] is not Japanese.” By default you would assume that the speaker is talking about themselves, that’s why the model solution is “I am not Japanese”, but depending on the context it could also be he, she, we, they – even you (though you have to imagine a situation involving amnesia or maybe a very small child something to make it plausible for the listener to not know their own nationality).
The only part in the sentence which doesn’t have its pronunciation written is the kanji word 日本人(にほんじん), and at least for me Duolingo constantly keeps testing me on its pronunciation in isolation. The rest is Hiragana which are phonetic (barring two or three minor exceptions with common particles such as ～は being written as “ha” but pronounced “wa”).
Personally I don’t think transcribing the sentence into the Latin alphabet is a good idea if that’s what you meant. In my experience it would just be too convenient to just read the transcription rather than the original sentence. And if a learner does that, they run the risk of rendering themselves next to illiterate in Japanese because they didn’t practice either kana or kanji enough. Indeed it could even be argued that this risk exists already to a smaller degree because the course writes quite a few words in hiragana which would normally be spelt in kanji (for example わたし(私, I), おちゃ(お茶, tea) etc.). I guess that is to make kanji a bit less overwhelming. Still I think this is preferable to transcribing into the Latin alphabet because at least you’re still practicing a native writing system.
That being said, I think it would be a nice improvement to add furigana (pronunciation indicators in hiragana/katakana) to the tooltips of kanji vocabulary (so you get it when you tap on/mouse over the word but it doesn’t jump at you at first glance).
Well, also understand that if you were to say, for example, "I am not at school" you would say: "(私は)学校にいません。" because as you correctly pointed out います is used to talk about living thing. However, a name is not living, nor would you want to use a form a verb that in the most basic sense means "to exist". Basically, ではありません is not used for negation regardless, it's used here because it is a possible present negative form of a verb that means "to be" (i.e. であります is effectively the same thing as です)
Hello andi_kan. The answer is "arimasen." In Japanese, 'n' is the only consonant that technically can stand alone without a vowel in trail. The standalone "n" can appear in the middle of the word or at the end of it, as with verbs ending in 'masen'. The rule is when the consonant 'n' is followed by a consonant made with the lips (p, b, or m), it is pronounced as 'm' and that gives you such words as tempura or kombu, which may appear to defy the the rule that only 'n' can stand alone, but as you pointed out, "tempura" written in hiragana or katakana uses the standalone n: てんぷら. I hope this helps.
Yes, that’s because the は in -ではありません is indeed the same one as in 私は学生です. -ではありません is originally composed of -で (a case ending probably best rendered as “as” here) + -は (topic particle) + あr- (verb stem “to exist”) + -iません (negative verb ending). But for modern language it’s best to think of the whole of -ではありません as a single verb form. If it weren’t, you would expect it to use いる instead of ある for living subjects. But in reality it’s always -ではありません, regardless of subject.
You can, but Japanese has a tendency to leave out as much as possible if it can be inferred from context. And since this is an answer to a question, you can usually infer the subject from the question. For example, if somebody asks you: “Are you Japanese?“ Then you can leave out the subject and context makes it clear that the subject must be “I”. But given the right question it might be natural to add the subject because it’s not inferrable. For example:
- マリアさんたちは日本人ですか？ [talking to Maria:] “Are you (multiple people) Japanese?”
- いいえ、私は日本人ではありません。 “No, I am not Japanese [although the other people might be].”
Here the question is about multiple people but the answer singles out only one among, so you can’t infer the subject from the question anymore.
TL;DR: You can add 私は but in most cases it would be more natural to omit it.
They are all the same character, just different fonts will display it differently. Duolingo doesn't use a dedicated font so the characters may appear different depending on which browser/platform you access it on.
Some fonts display the lift of the brush between the strokes while others show the light drag of the brush over the curve. You'll see this in most kana with curves/connected strokes (さ、き、ち、そ、り、こ)
No, that would be “No, Japanese people… no.” いいえ is the opposite of はい, and only that. It is not used for English “not” or “no + noun” (= “not a single”). For the former you have to use the negative form of the verb (which in the case of -です is -でわありません or -ではない). For “no + noun” Japanese usually uses a different construction and says “noun does not exist” (or on signs like “no entrance [allowed]” Japanese would formulate this as “entrance forbidden”).
There are technically kanji spellings for ある: 有る or 在る (I suspect they were used for slightly different nuances but I can’t find any info on which would have been appropriate in this situation. If I had to venture a guess, probably 在る is more likely). But in modern writing ある appears to be pretty much always written in Hiragana. Even if it wasn’t as a free verb, it probably would be when it’s part of a fixed grammatical affix. At least in similar cases where an affix was derived from a word normally written in Kanji, the affix tends to be pure Hiragana. For example the ending -にとって “for, as far as… is concerned” is usually written in pure Hiragana, even though it’s derived from the verb 取る[とる] which is normally written with Kanji.
- いいえ “no”
- 日本人 “Japanese person” (consisting itself of 日本 Japan + -人 “person from …”)
- -ではありません “am/are/is not” (in polite speech)
You could break down -ではありません:
- -で “as”
- -は (topic particle)
- あり- “to exist”
- -ません (polite negative ending)
So very literally translated you’re saying “It is not as a Japanese person that [I] exist”. (The “I” is not mentioned but unless context provides you with a different subject, “I” is assumed.)
However even though -ではありません historically comes from these components, it has for all intents and purposes a single cohesive ending in itself. So I would suggest you don’t worry about its components and just learn -ではありません as a single unit “am/are/is not”.
There is only one negative though では isn't negative, it is just で a form of です used when listing verbs/adjectives as well as the means/method particle and は the topic particle used here to add contrast and emphasize the negative
です itself is a short form of であります which is used in more formal writing.
ではありません is like saying [In the state of being X] [It does not exist]