1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Japanese
  4. >
  5. "First, you pass by a small b…

"First, you pass by a small bank."


June 9, 2017



I think まず is more idiomatic than はじめに in this sentence.


Can you elaborate? What does まず mean?


まず means Firstly, it is indeed very common to be heard. I think also we could use さいしょ


Yes i was thinking of mazu first and then saisho when i couldn't find it. I've rarely heard hajimeni being used lol


I think the same ! 始めに doesn't suit it !


What is the function of the の here?


Its describing the ownership of the そば, the side. It is the bank's side that you are passing.


Out of curiosity, can that be omitted or does it ever get omitted? Why specify the side of something? Does 通ります not imply that or give us enough information?


I believe that「小さな銀行を通ります」would just mean "to go through (the middle of) the small bank", like going from the entrance and then to the back exit or something like that.「そばを通ります」means "to go along the vicinity".




I've just answered the question in august 2020. It accepted my answer without soba. just hajimeni ginko wo toorimasu.


This sentence would became more correct if it's written: 私の日本語先生から「銀行を通ります」というのいいですと言いました。


Thanks again for the helpful information! I didn't really understand it fully myself before this. :D


I forgot the 「のそば」 and it was accepted as correct. 「通ります」 means "pass/walk along" so I believe people would understand what you mean by omitting 「のそば」in this context.


I thought so!! Man, glad to see that was confirmed! :D


How do I know that it's を instead of に before とおります?


銀行のそばに通ります would be more like "pass to the side of the bank," and maybe stop when you get there.


通ります is an action and 銀行のそば is the subject of that action, therefore the を partical is used here.


銀行のそば is the subject of that action

I don't think that's how that works.「小さな銀行のそば」is just the target of a perlative case in this sentence. The を describes that you go along the "vicinity of the small bank" or better phrased "pass by the small bank".


Thanks for that "perlative." Worth at least one Lingot. Somehow I never learned the term, but を often marks it in Japanese, as in 道を行く. I can't remember exactly how I used to explain those cases.


Thanks for that "perlative."

it's a term that doesn't come up in modern resources, most of the time all functions of を are paired to the accusative case for some reason, even though it's obvious that it is not an accusative use.


The subject of the action is the unexpressed "you." Marking subjects with を isn't advised.






そば is usually written in kana alone


そば is also my favorite food :B


Wouldn't it be 傍 instead of 側? You pass it's nearness, not specifically it's side right? 傍 means near or nearby, while I think 側 means side. Using 傍 would mean you are passing through the small bank's "vicinity", which makes more sense to me. Otherwise you're talking about passing through the small bank's side.


you would just use そば, too much kanji does exist in japanese sentences, the duolingo sentence with はじめに instead of 初めに and そば instead of 側 or 傍 is the most natural one imo. はじめに used as an introduction of something is almost always written in kana, and the same with そば when talking about position of something. However both kanji can be read as そば but in the case of writing 傍 can also be read as はた or かたわら, in that last one you usually just write 傍ら, which is the one that means "side; edge; beside; besides; nearby"


小さい being an i-adjective, wouldn't 小さい銀行 be correct too?


小さい and 大きい are the two amazing adjectives which have as -い as -な forms


Can someone explain why the NI is required after Hajime? NI is a direction marker from what I understand, what and First is not a place or direction.


"ni" can also be a marker of place or, as in this instance, time. "He" is strictly a direction (or endpoint) marker.


Would さいしょに work in place of はじめに?


Is the そば really necessary? It seems kind of redundant when using 通ります


"Hajimeni chisana ginkou ni toori masu." I put this as the answer, but was marked wrong for not putting the "no soba wo." But that's not what they asked me to translate! They didn't say "First, you pass by the area of a small bank." That sounds weird in English, but tells me what they expect me to write in Japanese. Should my answer have been accepted?


Passing to (ni) a small bank is a bit different from passing by ([soba] wo) it. No complaint about your "chisana" for "chiisana"?


I knew I was missing an "i!" Thanks. But I thought it was "toori" which meant "passing by," not the "soba wo" part.


The "toori(-)" is "passing," but you have to pass "through, by," or "along" something. The "soba-wo" gives the "by." The "-no soba" is probably not essential, but the "-wo" is.


The thing you are passing along/by is the bank, so the sentence should still be correct. Like I said, the sentence does not say "First, you pass by a small bank's area." It says "First, you pass by a small bank." "Soba" refers to a space by something, as I understand it. If Duo wants me to translate a sentence from English into Japanese, then the sentence needs to contain all the components they want in the translated sentence. Would you never refer to a place without "no soba wo" just like how sentence subjects are usually omitted? Or, as the English sentence is only talking about passing by a small bank and not a small bank's area, should the omission of "no soba wo" be an acceptable translation? Thus far, I haven't been provided with an answer which makes sense for "no soba wo" to always be included whenever one is talking about passing by a place.


But given the fact that one can imagine a Japanese bank having a welcomer, saying to people, どうぞお通りください for "Please come in," 銀行をとおる might sound a little to much like "pass into the bank." EDIT Right after I posted, it came to me that the sentence I gave was referring to the entrance to the bank, not the whole bank, but it is conceivable 銀行を通る might be interpreted "through the bank (to some exit)," 銀行の中を, in some context. (And I personally would understand just plain 銀行を with nothing else as "by the bank," but it's better to be specific.


(Replying to myself since Duo won't let me reply directly to you.) Ahh, I see. So the sentence would sound like you're going into the bank instead of by it without "no soba wo." I think I get it now. Thanks!


Do we need to include the . そば or can we just put はじめに、小さなぎんこうをとおります


I tried and got it right. :)


Why is はじめに、小さな銀行のそばに通ります marked incorrect? Doesn't に denote a particular location?


A destination. に is fine if you're stopping there, but the English says "pass by," not "pass to."


This is hard. The hints aren't that helpful either, esp. for そば. It is more like "you go by or pass through a small bank's [VICINITY or PROXIMITY]" which is not obviously mentioned in the actual English sentence but rather simply implied. But I think I now understand how のそばに can translate to "by" or "beside" which is not the case here though but in another similar item.


I have literally never seen はじめ followed by に. Usually just はじめて


In some books written in the Japanese language that I've seen, "preface" is written as はじめに.


はじめて is the gerund form of the verb 始める. The て is inflectional, not a particle like in はじめに, which means "at the beginning", where -in this case - はじめ (初め) is a noun ("the beginning").



のそば - What is this? Does this mean the side of the bank? When I hover it, it says 'pass by'. Same goes for とおります .


The clue "pass by" is for そばをとおり. The そば part can be roughly translated to mean "vicinity".


始めに = at/in [the] beginning

It's not exactly the same as "first," right?


No, because that is a different word. The word we are using is 初めに which although similar, is slightly different.


Again the Same OLD BUG : I selected the words, the order and the app said I was wrong !


why はじめ is followed by に? When I click first, it shows (はじめ) (に). Does it mean に can be omitted?


The 先に has already been put in the hint and yet i still cant use it


はじめに、小さな銀行を通ります is accepted without the のそば

銀行のそば = "the bank's side."

The original sentence literally translates to: "firstly, you pass by a small bank's side" but you can say it just fine without side/そば/側


Shouldn't 取りあえず be used?


I don't think passing the bank is really a big issue, something that needs to be done right away before you get on with whatever comes next.


is there a difference between mazu and hajimeni? like politeness level? or is one just used more often than the other?


It's kind of like the difference between "first of all/first off" and "to start with," I'd say. Politeness not involved, and probably not so much a matter of frequency either.

Learn Japanese in just 5 minutes a day. For free.