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  5. "かれらはきょうだいです。"


Translation:They are brothers.

June 22, 2017





I wrote exactly those kanji and still marks it wrong. Am I missing something?


1) Was it a listening question (type what you hear)? Then it only accepts one specific combination of kana and kanji.

2) If it wasn't a listening question, then for some reason the combination of kanji and kana that you used hasn't been entered into the database yet. An error report will usually get all possible correct answers added to the database eventually.


So兄弟 can be used too describe siblings of both gender, not just male siblings?


Yes, きょうだい (兄弟) is for either brothers or siblings of any gender. しまい (姉妹) is for sisters only.


thank you! ^_^ in chinese those hanz mean big brother small brother, so the clarification is welcome

[deactivated user]

    Kyoudai works for brothers (all boys) and for siblings (boys and girls) Shimai works for sisters (only girls)

    The same is with the spanish: "Hermanos" means the childs are all boys or boys and girls "Hermanas" means the childs are all girls


    So 'karera' and 'karetachi' also go for both genders, even though 'kare' is male?


    "Karera" is male plural, "kanojotachi" is female plural. "Karetachi" simply doesn't exist, I think


    I wrote "those guys are brothers." Why is this wrong?


    Hmm, it's difficult to explain why exactly, but I agree with Duo that your translation isn't correct.

    It could be because of the different grammatical construction of the subject; "those guys" being a modified noun, as opposed to the strict pronoun of "they". You can reflect this difference in Japanese by using あの奴ら (which is not a polite way to refer to other people) or あの男たち (although one could argue this is better translated as "those men").

    If it's already clear from earlier conversation which guys you are referring to, you wouldn't need to repeat "those guys"; uou would just say "they" and it's the same idea in Japanese. This sentence would be used when it's clear to the speaker and listener(s) who "they" are.


    Those guys = あの人たち、あいつら、あの男たち、etc. They (masc.) = かれたち、かれら. To simplify: かれ means he, not 'that guy'. あの人 means 'that guy' or 'that person'.


    What's the purpose of ら after かれ?


    ~ら(or 等, in kanji) makes かれ plural. I.e. it changes "he" into "they".


    Is it right to use たち?


    Technically, yes, I believe it's correct but かれたち is significantly less common than かれら, to the point that it sounds unnatural in most cases. From what I can tell, this quirk is largely limited to かれ though... it's the opposite case for かのじょ for example.


    Kare is singular for he isnt? Plural is karetachi so, i really dont understand DL translation


    かれら is the informal version of かれたち


    Based on my understanding, karera and karetachi have the same meaning, but karera is used more often. Karetachi sounds weird but is understood.


    Here are a couple of links where native Japanese speakers confirm that "karera" is preferred to the almost-never-used "karetachi".




    Now this is a quality comment, someone who not only answers the call but actually shows us valid backup!

    ... I should get around doing that as well, until then, have my lingot, good sir!


    Is it like that with kanojora and kanojotachi?


    Man, it's actually horrible to read all-hiragana sentences compared proper kanji+kana structured sentences (in the case that the kanji are known).

    • 1204

    does this mean "they are MY brothers" or "they are EACH OTHER'S brothers"?


    They are each other's brothers.


    Still a bit confused as to how the sentences are composed in Japanese. I don't understand when to and when not to use object markers. The order of the sentence is usually object, object marker, verb. But how do you know whether to put きょうだい or かれらは first since both "siblings" and "they" are objects. Can someone clarify??


    I think you (and Orewa) confuse 'object' with 'subject'. An object is something that's on the receiving end of an action, while a subject is the actor. Objects are usually marked by を in Japanese, while は marks the topic of a sentence (often the subject).

    In this case, "they" is the subject, so that is what you begin the sentence with. "siblings" is a description - it's what 'they' are; that's why it's placed after the subject and right before です (the auxiliary verb for "to be X").


    I think your terminology is a bit off, which is why you're confused!

    First, "object" in this case means "grammatical object", not "objects" in general. Grammatically, an object is the part of a sentence that receives the action of the verb. In the sentence "The ball hit my teacher", "my teacher" is the object because it is the thing that gets hit. The thing doing the hitting, "the ball", is the subject. Grammatical objects are not to be confused with everyday "objects", which are physical things you can hold or touch. Grammatically, those kinds of objects are called "nouns". Both "my teacher" and "the ball" are nouns, but only one is an object in that sentence.

    Likewise, きょうだい and かれら are both nouns, not objects.

    Second, I think what you call an "object marker" is actually a "particle". Particles are those tiny words in Japanese that get attached to bigger words to show what role those words are playing in the sentence. In "かれらはきょうだいです", the particle is は. Every particle means something different, and は is the "topic marker" particle, which means it points out what topic the sentence is going to be about. ("Topic" in Japanese is different from a grammatical "subject". A grammatical subject is the thing that performs the action of the verb in a sentence—like "the ball" from my earlier example. This is not to be confused with everyday "subjects", which are "topics of conversation". Try not to get confused by this! The particle は marks "topics of conversation". The particle が marks grammatical subjects.)

    The particle that marks grammatical objects is を!

    So! In Japanese we have the sentence "かれらはきょうだいです。" This translates in English to "They are brothers." Here's how they break down in each language:


    "They are brothers."

    subject = they

    verb = are

    object = brothers



    topic = かれら

    particle = は (topic marker)

    object = きょうだい

    verb = です

    As you can see, objects don't need を when used with です. You only use を when you do something TO the object, not when the object simply IS.

    So! When you said, "The order of the sentence is usually object, object marker, verb," I think what you really meant was "noun, particle, verb". ;) Try thinking of sentence order like this instead: topic, subject, object, verb—then just understand that particles are tagged onto the ends of their words (and not every sentence has every part!).

    So finally! To answer your question "how do you know whether to put きょうだい or かれらは first", look at their particles to figure out their sentence function, then remember the sentence order I just told you. かれら has the particle は, so it is the topic, which goes first. きょうだい has no particle, making it the object, so it goes right before the verb. です is the verb, so it goes last.

    I hope that helped! It's a lot to say, and I could have said more, but it's easy to get confused, so I tried to limit myself to the essentials! @_@


    Thanks for taking the time to write. This was helpful.


    Thank you Thank you Thank you this is so helpful. It's so easy to confuse the topic with the subject!


    They is the object here, siblings defines the relationship of them. To understand Japanese sentence formation, I suggest watching Japanese movies or anime (I feel comfortable because I used to watch anime)


    Actually, "they" is the subject here, not the object. English and Japanese grammar are a little different from each other, so I'll break it down both ways:


    "They are siblings."

    subject = they

    verb = are

    object = siblings



    topic = かれら

    particle = は (topic marker)

    object = きょうだい

    verb = です


    A copula is intransitive, i.e. it does not receive a direct object, IIRC. I don't know what part of speech that would make 兄弟 , though.


    In English, siblings would be the "complement". The function of the Japanese sentence is similar, so I think it's reasonable to also call 兄弟 the "complement", though I'm not sure about the technical terminology in Japanese.


    What is the difference between ら and たち?


    The basic difference is that ら is more informal (so you tend not to use it in certain contexts or with certain people), while たち is a 'neutral' plural, and can be used with just about anything.


    Can you always use ~ら instead of ~たち


    I think, technically yes, but in practice, ら is only used on certain nouns and in certain context. たち is far more universally applicable.


    Call me antiquated, but I answered once with "They are brethren," which to my understanding should also be acceptable in this context.


    I disagree. きょうだい refers explicitly to "brothers" in the sense of immediate family, i.e. blood-related/adopted/step siblings.

    "Brethren", perhaps to my modern understanding, refers more to "brothers" in the sense of "brothers in arms" or people who are related through their community. "Brethren" is more similar in meaning to "comrade" than the actual usage/meaning of きょうだい.


    So "kyoda imasu" means they are brothers?



    (Karera wa) kyoudai desu.

    They are brothers/siblings.


    (Karera wa) kyoudai ga imasu.

    They have brothers/siblings.

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