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  5. "I took a day off from school…

"I took a day off from school yesterday."


June 26, 2017



I hate how duo goes between casual and formal phrases


It's important to learn both.


Yes, it's important to learn both, but how often will you be switching back and forth on a per sentence basis.


how often

You'd be surprised.


Often the same sentence must have both polite and plain forms.

Did anything happen on the day I was off school?

Dependent / subordinate clauses must always be in plain form. です・ます are for the end of the sentence.


I really wish it would mix in a whole lot more plain language, or even start with that and mix in polite later. It's weird when there's just one sentence like this, but knowing the plain form of verbs is very important.

The main way that more interesting sentences are built up in Japanese is that subclauses (basically any sentence) ending in a verb or い-adjective can behave like an adjective and be attached to a noun. But the ます/です form can't really go there, so until you learn plain verbs, it's really hard to express a lot of ideas.


I agree that you do need plain form to be able to construct more complex sentences. Most classes probably start with the long/polite forms because plain/short/casual is a little more difficult to conjugate. So, て form and plain form are taught a little later.


I believe the reason they teach polite forms before pain forms is that it's generally better to err on the side of politeness. As a traveller/foreigner, you're probably going to be speaking to strangers and/or officials, hotels staff, and the like, who will be addressing you with polite forms. This being the case, knowledge of these forms is useful. Also, you're less likely to accidentally offend someone by being excessively polite than excessively blunt.


Not sure but since it is in past tense, shouldn't it be だった?


休んだ(やすんだ) is the past tense of 休む. 休みました、however, is the polite past form, so that should also be accepted.

  • 1079

But the dictionary says 休む is an intransitive verb. I don't understand why it can take a direct object, 学校を here.


I'd also like this explained. I found a Japanese dictionary (斎藤和英大辞典) that lists it as 自他動 which appears to mean both intransitive and transitive verb. However, JMDict only lists it as intransitive. I don't know why the English based Japanese-English dictionaries differ from the Japanese based ones and why they seem to be incomplete on such a common word.


I thought だ is used for present tense, and だつた is used for past tense. I am very confused ☹️


The past form of 休む is 休んだ. The だ is part of the verb.

Make sure to check the rest of the comments for questions like this.


Can someone please explain the difference between yasunda and yasundata?

  • 1079

As e.freed.2432 says above, 休んだ is the plain past form of the verb 休む. The plain past form ends in た for ichidan verbs (食べた) and godan verbs in groups 1 (会った, 待った, 売った), 3 (歩いた), and 5 (話した) but in だ for godan verbs in groups 2 (遊んだ, 飲んだ, 死んだ) and 4 (泳いだ).

Clearly, here だ is part of the plain past tense of the verb 休む not the present form of the plain copula -- whose present polite form is the familiar です and whose past plain form is だった (datta, not data). 休んだた is not a thing -- I certainly haven't seen it before -- I think there is a confusion here because the sentence ends in だ.

The copula is used when you want to connect two things, for example "That question is easy": その問題は簡単です (polite form) or その問題は簡単だ (plain form) in the present or "That question was easy", so その問題は簡単でした (polite) or その問題は簡単だった (plain) in the past. Confusingly, you can also end a sentence with an explanatory のです/のだ and んです/んだ (common in spoken language) -- see this and this. But then you would have 休むんだ for present tense and 休んだんだ for past tense (sounds a little strange but I think it's correct).


How is this one sentence in casual? This was so confusing.


Because it ended with だ instead of the usual です


Well, almost. You have the right idea, but the formal version of this sentence would end with やすみました rather than just やすんだ


Why is it suddenly not accepting polite verbs?


Duolingo thinks you're a buddy now. Formal is not acceptableよ!




Why is this using を? I don't recall it being used without verbs. I know that 休む is a verb but here it's used as a noun (since だった is used instead of た).

Can someone explain?


The past form of 休む is 休んだ. The だ is part of the verb.


Would you ever use から to communicate the "from" part of a sentence like this?

Something like 昨日学校から休んだ?


休む takes the activity you're suspending as its direct object. から can be used to say since when you've been absent:

水曜日から 学校を 休んでいます。


if just だ is already past tense, then what would the present tense version be?


WAIT would it just be 休む? so you only use だ for past tense?

  • 1079

The forms for 休む for present and future tense (non-past) are:

  • plain: 休む
  • polite: 休みます

The forms for past tense are:

  • plain: 休んだ
  • polite: 休みました

You can find these out yourself by checking an online dictionary such as Jisho and clicking on the "Show Inflections" link.

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