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  5. "それは水です。"


Translation:It is water.

June 12, 2017



Remembered in the German lessons I entered Das ist Wasser so many times...


what is it with duolingo and their water


Gotta stay hydrated bro


Yeah tell me about it lol


Why が was not used here?


@Chaitanyad972223, か is often and in majority of the cases as a question (asking a question) article, (as far I'm aware and understand). So I think if the phrase was: それは水 (This is the Kanji for water - みず mizu) ですか. Then essentially it would read as a question - is it water.


Thats か(ka) and they are talking about が(ga) and asking why は(wa) is used instead. Btw there's a good answer to that question below, but it may be difficult to beginners


Still struggling to understand when to use 'wa' or 'wo' in these types of sentences


TL/DR: Use を with direct objects and が with subjects. Replace the particle with は if you want to mark the noun as a topic.

Long version:

First of all, you need to understand the noun is a subject, an object or a complement. In this case です literally means "exists as" so by the intranstive nature of the verb, it can only have a subject or a complement.

それ should be the subject of the verb exist, so you need a subject marker が to represent the relationship. Here you see は instead of が because the topic marker は supersede が so that it sets それ as a topic of the sentence.

If the noun is a direct object, then the particle を is used. Again, the object can be selected as a topic so the topic marker は can replace the を if it is needed.

Same treatment of は is used for complement nouns, but note that not all particles associated with the complements can be replaced with は, e.g. に、へ、と、で. In those cases, the は is appended to the particle instead.

Examples -

それは水です - それ as a subject, so the は replaces the original が.

それは好きですか. それ as a complement (original sentence is それが好きです)

それは使います. それ as a direct object (original sentence is それを使います)

それには乗りません. それ as a complement (それに乗ります)


I understand why 'sore' has the indicator. What I do not understand is why 'mizu' does not have an indicator and which one would it have?


Hmm, I don't know if I can explain this very well, but 水 sort of does have an indicator, です.

As Keith mentioned, です behaves as an intransitive verb, in that it doesn't take a direct object. If you were to point to a part of the sentence which you could call "the object" though, it would be 水. です does the job of connecting it to the topic, in this case それ.


です is a short form of であります。

The sentence is originally

それは 水で あります。

The particle で follows 水 which means "as" and the sentence literally means - That exists as water.


But both です and だ aren't necessarily needed for a complete sentence as far as I know. Grammatically it would be correct to just say: "それは水" (but, of course, it is not a polite variant).


Sorry I don't really get it


Duo for Android (or generally on all lol) Should have a 'save/star' comments that can be accessed in the homepage. どもありがとう先生


Wa is used after subject and wo is used after object


So for english "sore" and "are" would get a "that" translation as english doesn't have an intermediate distance equivalent like "sore"?


Yeah, I think the closest you'll get is you can translate あれ as "that over there"


What light through yonder (あれ) window breaks?


それ - that "thing" near you それは - that "thing" is the topic of this sentence 水です - it is water

So basically in a literal sense "that thing near you is water" which simply makes "That's water".

Am I getting this right?


I thought あれ meant that (far) kore -これ (this) それ sore (this close to listener)?


If "sore wa mizu desu" translates to "that is water", does that mean "sore ga mizu desu" translates to "The water is right there"?? I feel like I'm not doing something right here.


Adding to Keith's post, それ is the pronoun for an object, namely "it" or "that" in English. In order to say it's "there", you need the pronoun for a location, namely そこ in Japanese, to be present somewhere in the sentence.

Note also that you've changed the subject around when you go from "That is water" to "The water is there."

In the former, "that", or some unspecified thing, is being equated to "water". In the latter, "the water" is being specified as "existing there".


I would expect the conversation is like this:

  • どれが水ですか。
  • それが水です。

This would be translated to:

  • Which one is water?
  • That one is water.


I thought sore wa is "this" and are wa is fot "that"


I was confused much the same way not even four months ago, until I looked through my brother's college textbook. Here's what I've learned: Japanese actually has four--count 'em, 4--demonstrative pronouns (well okay, they're technically 3 demonstratives and 1 interrogative, but most of the lessons that I came across taught them all together and the structure for them all is too similar so we'll go with four). They are "kore", "sore", "are", and "dore".

"kore" refers to anything that is close to the speaker in distance, especially anything that might be in the speaker's hand for instance, like "this thing near me".

"sore" is for anything that is closer to the listener than it is to the speaker, like "that thing near you".

"are" is for anything that is off in the distance away from both speaker and listener, like "that thing over there".

and "dore" is a ambiguous placeholder usually used in questions to ask "which one?"

You are also going to run into the "kono/sono/ano/dono" set soon. These "~no" words are just like the "~re" words except that they are adjectives rather than pronouns, and so must be followed by a noun. And there are even more Ko/So/A/Do sets where that came from...


Thank you so much that helped heaps!


Kore: esto, esta (this) Sore: eso, esa (that) Are: aquel, aquella (that) Es más fácil explicarlo en español


Can someone please tell me about the difference betweenそれ And その?Thanks


それ is a standalone pronoun and can replace a noun (like "that"), while その is an adjective and must be followed by the noun it's describing (like "that X").


mini zoo
"Noah'a Arc = a mini zoo on WATER"

-- or --

"My Zoo plankton live in WATER"
"mi zoo.."
mizu みず 水 Water


Could you say "あれは水です"?


Depending on the relative location among the speaker, the listener and the water source, it is possible. (if the water is far from both persons)


Why not それはお水です。? When we have to add お before 水?


No, normally 水 does not come with お.


All I keep seeing is: これ = this あれ = that それ = that It's confusing


Difference between 'sore wa' and 'sore ga'???


それは水です "water" is the new information. People want to know what "that" is.

それが水です "that" is the new information. People want to know which one is "water."


I've read several of your comments on the difference between は and が in several threads and this is the one that really sticks to me. ありがとうございます!


How do we differentiate the use of 'sore (それ)', 'kore (これ)' and 'are (あれ)' corresponding to 'this/that/it' ? And anything about usage of 'wa (は)', 'wo (を)', 'to(と)' will also be helpful.


I already explained ko/so/a/do words elsewhere in this discussion, so its worth finding.

As for the particles you've listed: wo/を is the (direct) object marker; it marks the noun that the verb is happining to. it's essentially the opposite of the subject marker ga/が, which marks the thing that is doing the verb.

Wa/は is the topic marker. I'm still learning when and where exactly to use this particle myself, but from what I understand myself, は is generally used once at the beginning of each entire paragraph or conversation to establish what the paragraph or conversation is about (with a few exceptions as always). If I'm right, then Duolingo's method teaching sentence-by-sentence is actually a pretty terrible way to convey the topic marker's purpose.

Finally to/と is usually a grouping marker. It has several uses and translations, but chances are you can easily transliterate it to English as "and" or "with".


Great answer! Just to clarify a couple of things:

  • は can be, and often is, used multiple times in the course of a conversation/paragraph, even multiple times in the same sentence. Generally, to begin with, it's a good approximation to think of は as a particle that overrides another particle like が or を, simultaneously taking over its role and emphasizing the thing it's attached to.
  • と is introduced in this course in one of the Intro levels, in sentences like 田中といいます. In this situation, its role is the "quotation particle" and it basically wraps quote marks around the noun/clause/sentence before it. If you fill out the implications of the example sentence, you get something along the lines of [私は][人が]田中といいます, which sort of awkwardly translates to "[About me,] [people] say "Tanaka"."


Good to know, especially the structure behind the phrase といいます! Thanks!


Why does 水 not need a particle? In which cases are there "floating" sentence parts?


Why does 水 not need a particle?

Probably the same answer to "Why does 'water' not need a preposition in the sentence 'this is water'?"

In which cases are there "floating" sentence parts?

You mean some phrases that can move around in a sentence? Then probably the same as English.. "Water, this is." is not quite possible except in some conversation, so as "水です、それは".


I dont understand, Why using is not are?


Is this a question about English? It depends on the subject of the being verb. I can give you a list of conjugations:

I am , you are , he/she/it is , we are , you all are , they are

As you can see, if the subject is first-person singular (you know, "I"), then "are" changes to "am", and if third-person singular (pronouns like "he" "she" or "it"), then "are" changes to "is".

And in this sentence, "are" changes to "is" because water is referenced as an "it".


ok when would this sentence even be in Japanese? I know in America we never just point at water and say: "that is water"


Never? Even if someone held up a bottle of clear liquid and asked you "what is this?"

Or what if someone poured some clear liquid in a glass, drank some and said "man this vodka is so weak..."? You could point to it and say "that is water. We don't leave vodka out for patients in a paediatric clinic..."

Any situation you could say it in English would generally also work in Japanese; use your imagination.

Besides, I think the intention of this (and any) exercise is not to memorize this exact sentence, but rather to introduce the concept of それ vs これ and あれ, the basic sentence structure of "That is X", and the vocabulary/kanji for "water" which is a very useful word to know in general (not just for pointing to it).


So if i say sore wa mizu desuka. Am I saying is it water? Or do I need to switch to kore ga?


Yes, それは/"sore wa" works fine. All the か/ka at the end does is turn the sentence into a question.

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