1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Japanese
  4. >
  5. "あのテーブルはいくらですか?"


Translation:How much is that table?

June 13, 2017



Sooo with the Japanese we've all learned up to this point, we can now ask: あのまどに犬がいくらですか?(How much is that dog in the window?)


Don't want to be a party-pooper, but that sentence actually reads "How much is it for the dog, in addition to that window?"

"That dog in the window" is actually a fairly complex phrase, which would require a relative clause; "that dog (which is) in the window". To say it in Japanese, one could say まどにいる(あの)犬, which kind of translates to "exists-in-the-window dog"


Lol this is the best kind of discussion; thank you for the info XD


あの(that) まど(window) に(in) 犬(dog) が(subject particle) いくら(how much) です(is) か(question particle)

I don't see where you're getting "How much is it for the dog, in addition to that window?" from that.

That would be あのまどと犬がいくらですか


That's a good question and you're right, on a literal level, that there is nothing in the sentence that indicates "in addition to". However, like so much of Japanese (and language in general), communication is a lot more than what is literally being said. If you want to learn speak Japanese like a native speaker (though admittedly I'm not one), you will have to learn to think like one, including how you interpret literal information into contextual meaning.

For me, the first clue is いくら. As you know, it mens "how much" but in practice, it's almost exclusively used to mean "how much (does it cost)". For example, if you wanted to say "how much cheese do you want on your pizza?", it would seem very unnatural to use いくら even though the phrase "how much" appears in there. So, we know we're talking about the prices of things.

The next clue is the fact that there are two things (specifically two "noun phrases"). Slight tangent about noun phrases: "that window" (あのまど) and "the dog" (犬) are two noun phrases because they are each discussing a separate single object/group of objects. When we say "that dog in the window", we are only describing one single object, just with more specificity. For example "the noisy little beetles which fly into my apartment when I leave the window open in summer" is a single noun phrase because it describes a single (very specific) group of objects.

The Japanese noun phrase equivalent of "That dog in the window" is まどにいるあの犬, as I previously mentioned. (Note that the あの has now moved from in front of まど to in front of 犬, because "that dog in the window" is different from "the dog in that window".) Like in English, a Japanese noun phrase can be arbitrarily long and there is a wide range of connectors that can be used within a noun phrase which also have other grammatical roles outside of a noun phrase. に by itself (i.e. without a verb) is not sufficient to accurately bring a location into a noun phrase.

You've put that に means "in", but in reality, it's only a particle. It's commonly used as the location particle which commonly translates to "in", but that is not its only purpose. Further, に is used to link a target location with the verb, not another noun, and です isn't the sort of verb to commonly take a target location.

Because we now know we're talking about the prices of two separate things, and we must also be talking about the price of the window because に is insufficient to include it in the noun phrase, the most obvious/natural conclusion is that に is a common abbreviation of に加えて【にくわえて】which is where I got "in addition to". Alternatively, you can kind of think of に as describing the target location of the dog's price as being "in/on" the window's price (which logically means adding).

Using と instead, as you suggested, is also natural and correct, but there is a slight difference in nuance which easily captured in English. (Native speakers may disagree with me about the next part, but this is the understanding I've come to from living and working in Japan.)

  • When you use に (in lieu of に加えて), the implication is that you have already decided to buy "that window" and are trying to haggle for a better price, à la "What if I got the dog too? How much (of a better deal) would it be for both of them?" It feels much more like you're thinking of the window and the dog as a set with their own special price.
  • When you use と (to simply mean "and"), the implication is that you don't know/aren't sure of the price of one or both of the objects, or you're not so good with mental arithmetic. This time, it feels much more like you're treating the window and the dog as two separate objects.


Pretty sure if there was a dog in a window and he said that to a shop owner, the dude would understand just fine. It's obvious the window would not be for sale if he is pointing at a dog in a window. The only time there would be confusion is if you're writing in a book, in which case it should be prefaced earlier that there is a dog in the window and the person gestures at it.


Yeah but you wouldn't need to specify the window, it's obvious by the context あれわ犬いくらですか "how much is the dog?" and you can point to add further emphasis. これわ犬いくらですか "How much is this dog?" can also work because of your proximity to it, while それわ instead of これわ would indicate a dog not near you in which case finger points are a must. And to really save time you could just say, これにそれといくらですか "how much is this and that?"


In order to be "exist", shouldn't the sentence end with います?


"犬は" or "犬が"? ...Curious sidenote: how to say "doggy"? Any standard ways of making diminutives like that in Japanese? Perhaps it's simply "little __"?


Close: ワンちゃん wan chan (wan being the sound Japanese believe dogs make, rather that "woof", or 'bow-wow')


I thought the katakana ワ was usually reserved for writing particles, and instead you would use the "u" katakana, plus a miniature vowel sound. I.e. ウァン. Is the ワ particle used for onomatopoeia?


Never mind, I'm thinking about the ヲ particle.


How does "How much is that table" even make sense? Are we purchasing the table itself? If so, why is that under thr resturant category. Buying the physical table at a resturant is not a common practice in America.


Of all the places I visited in my brief trip to Japan, one of them did randomly happen to be a restaurant supply store =)


Really? It's pretty standard where I'm from. Like the meal? Love the service? Buy the table. It's more of a symbolic gesture, but people have been known to take the table with them


I have never heard this in English and can't see the question translating to "how much does it cost to eat there". The only interpretation I can get from the Japanese is wanting to buy the table itself (and there's no context to define anything else).

I suspect a lack of context to give it grounding is a problem here.


Please clarify... is this a joke? Some cultures are very funny and weird compared to the norms of most of us (especially japan) so this is a serious comment right? Do people actually just buy tables from a restaurant commonly? It seems like it would damage the business of a restaurant, considering how mostly restaurants are constantly fighting to have enough space to fit people in


I'm guessing it means something like: "How much does it cost to eat at that table?" However, that's only a matter of interperation.


I would assume that different tables vary in pricing


Why あの and not あれ/それ? Is it a matter of objectivity?


あの、その、この are demonstrative adjectives.

あれ、それ、これ are demonstrative pronouns.


To use あの you have to specify. Like "that car" or "that table". For あれ/それ/これ you don't specify the object, it is just "this" or "that".


The other two are right but simply:

これ それ and あれ are nouns and are used on their own.

この その and あの are kinda like prefixes and are used before another word.


あの is actually an abbreviation for あれの.


let's go to the restaurant and buy some tables!


"How much is that table over there" is not accepted. I'm quite confident that's a mistake?


I suspect that due to the fact that Japanese has multiple demonstratives with very specific functions, they've programmed duolingo to be very precise with the wording that it accepts.

Demonstrative adjectives (must come attached to a noun, as in "this/that table"): この、その、あの、どの

Demonstrative pronouns for things (replaces the noun, as in "this/that thing"): これ、それ、あれ、どれ

Demonstrative pronouns for LOCATIONS ("over here/there"): ここ、そこ、あそこ、どこ

Demonstrative pronouns for directions ("this/that way"): こちら、そちら、あちら、どちら

Because of the fact that "あの" is strictly used as an adjective and therefore must come attached to a noun (テーブル), the most accurate translation is simply "that table". Accepting "over there" as a translation would also cause confusion later on when it came time to distinguish between "あの" and "あそこ"


I appreciate the comprehensive list, but I think it's okay if meanings are condensed when translated in one direction, as long as the different types of demonstrative pronouns are explained.


I was taught that あの means 'that (thing) over there' and had the exact (apparently incorrect) translation as you.


A closer translation would be "that thing (over there)."


I got dinged on "over there" as well. Not only is it technically correct (especially if you're just doing the more literal translation, hoping to distinguish from その), but there were other questions where "over there" was an acceptable inclusion in the translation. I say this should have been acceptable too.


Is it ever いくら何ですか? For some reason that rolls off my tongue.


Nope. いくら and 何 are both question words in themselves. If you put them together you'd literally be saying "how much what". You CAN ask あれは何円ですか? or あれは何ドルですか? (lit. How many yen/dollars is that?)


I agree with you, but just thought I'd point out that 「あのテーブルはいくらなんですか?」 is also a correct sentence and probably what OP was thinking of, rather than using 何.

いくらなんですか is a conversational form of いくらなのですか, which in turn makes use of the のです grammatical construction, which in this case could be being used to indicate surprise or a request for an explanation.


Oh cool, thanks for the extra info!


Just out of curiosity, what context would that sentence be used in? Is it something like "How much did you say that table costed?!"


I think「あのテーブルはいくらなんですか?」is not quite that strong. It's more for indicating mild surprise or curiosity.

For example, you're visiting a distant relative (which is why you might use です instead of more casual language) and the conversation turns to how nice their coffee table is. Your relative mentions it didn't cost as much as it looks, so you say 「へぇ、あのテーブルはいくらなんですか?」


well I know the subject goes first and "how much" isn't the subject, the thing you're addressing is. so I don't think so.


In the sentence "あのテーブルはいくらですか?" she clearly says "ke-buru" - is this a glitch or does TE actually turn into more of a KE after "no"?


Yes!! I'm struggling so much with this too!!!


Why do certain words change how they sound in sentences? Like テーブル stops sounding like "tay-boo-roo" and turns into something else. How are we supposed to recognise that word being spoken in a sentence if it suddenly stops sounding like itself...


Yeah, did you hear "ke-buru" too? it might be a mistake in the robot voice... i reported the sound not sounding right because i'm pretty sure it's always pronounced "te-buru" and this was a TTS mistake


I translated this as "how much is that table over there?" because there is a difference between "sono" and "ano" - did anyone else do the same and get marked wrong for that?


"Over there" runs the risk of being confused with the location-based demonstratives koko, soko, and asoko (over here, over there, over there), and is hence not accepted as a translation in this case.

On that note, I'm kind of curious about this: I keep seeing people say they were taught that ano refers to a more general "(thing) over there", but I was taught--by two separate people--that the so- demonstratives (sono, sore, soko, sochira) refer specifically to things that are away from the speaker and close to the person being addressed, while a- demonstratives (ano, are, asoko, achira) refer to things that are away from both speaker and addressee. Is it in fact this specific?


This gets into what's called the "ko-so-a-do" series of words. The "do" set like "どこ" is a question word (in this example meaning "where").

All of my Japanese teachers, native and non-native, taught us that the "ko" set refers to things in the speaker's immediate possession or are closer to the speaker than listener. "この ペン を 使ってください。" for example means "Use this pen, please."

The "so" set refers to things in the listener's immediate position or are closer to the listener than speaker. "その えんぴつ を使いな。" for example means "Use (your) pencil." (The imperative verb form is used in this example and might be used by a teacher to a small schoolkid.)

The "a" set refers to things distant from both the speaker and listener's position or possession. For example, "そして、あのオフィスへ行きます。" means "Then, go to that office." "that" or "there" is often how this set of words is translated, but "over there" is sometimes added to help differentiate from the "so" set but either phrasing is usually correct.


soko is not "over there"; soko is "there". "asoko" is "over there. i'd like an answer to my question from a native speaker pls.


Ahh finally in japan. I wanted to go here al my life. walks straight into ikea to buy a table


I read this as あの、テーブルはいくらですか?


難しい ですね!


Shouldn't it be something along the lines of "How many tables are over there?" あのテーブルは --> [roughly: concerning those tables over there] いくら --> [how many] ですか --> [is/are?]


いくら (ikura) is "how much." The word for "how many" is いくつ (ikutsu).


"How much for that table?" not accepted?


That table is how much doesn't workm


"That table is how much" isn't exactly correct English. Unless it's a rhetorical question, and you're just surprised at the how expensive the table is, in which case the Japanese would be different to reflect the change in tone.


Could the translation be also "How much is the table over there?"?


I would tentatively say no. I can understand the argument for it being close enough to the intended meaning that it should be accepted, but in my opinion, it's different enough to need correcting.

The problem with "the table over there" is that it isn't really a single noun phrase, more like two separate things connected by a relative pronoun: "the table (which is) over there". This is a different grammar structure from "that table", in which the "that" is more similar to an adjective.

Similarly in Japanese, the あの in あのテーブル is treated as a "pre-noun adjectival modifier". There is also as separate grammar structure for the relative clause in Japanese: あそこにあるテーブル ("the over-there-exists table").


Why is あの used? What if I used それ?


Is there a difference between あの and その? Don't they both mean that (over there)? I know the difference between those two and それ, though.


その--away from speaker, close to listener. あの--away from both speaker and listener


How much is that table over there - long winded, but still correct.


What would be the construction for multiple tables? I.e., how would this be different for, "How much are those tables?"

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