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  5. "There are four chairs."

"There are four chairs."


June 29, 2017



How do I tell if I need ha, wo, or ga?


は (as a particle it is pronounced as wa) is used if the word before is the topic of the conversation. So it depends on the context.

を is used when the word before is a object/thing which is operated on. Give something to someone else, for example.

が is used when を and は are not used. It is used if you have a object, a school for example, which isn't topic of the conversation and is not changed. Going to something, for example. But if you talked in the sentence before, about school too, or where asked something about school. School is the topic and は is used.

Hope this is right i am still learning.


(am also learning, unsure) I thought it was the other way round, as in I thought that the topic is after the は but before the が. マリアとジョンは日本語が話せます。(Maria & John speak Japanese, used in the earlier excersises) the topic is Japanese, so it's surrounded by ha and ga. pls correct me if I'm wrong


Particles act as suffixes, so they effect the word before them. In the sentence マリアとジョンは日本語が話せます, "Maria and John" are the topic marked by は and Japanese is the subject marked by が. "On the topic of Maria and John - they can speak Japanese"
Not all sentences will have both a topic particle and subject particle. Often the topic is implied and omitted if it is already known through context, or only は will be used if the topic and the subject are the same thing. In that sentence, if you were previously talking about Maria and John, you could drop their names and just say "Can speak Japanese" and still be completely understood through context.

は marks the general idea of the conversation and will put emphasis on what comes after it.
椅子は四つあります "As for the chairs, there are four of them" There aren't two or three, there are four.

が marks the new important information and puts emphasis on what comes before it.
椅子が四つあります - "There are four chairs" Not tables, or windows, they are chairs.

が is typically used with あります since you want to stress what it is that exists, rather than the existence itself.


Particles act as suffixes

I believe that they are called postpositions in English, if you were wondering.


I thought the number could go before or after the particle


It can, this sentence can be 四ついすがあります or いすが四つあります. The meanings differ a tiny bit but overall they're the same thing

[deactivated user]

    There should be a の particle between in the first example like this: 四つの椅子があります。(よっつのいすがあります。)


    Big help thanks!


    Np, I had trouble with the order as well :)


    Would you mind briefly outlining the difderence in meanings? If its not too much trouble.


    Is there a way to force pronunciation of these sentences that you construct yourself?


    This is weird. Some questions, following structure works "Number-object-が- あります" On some questions, it gives it as wrong answer and says correct is "Object-が-Number- あります" In my case, 机 and 椅子 are given right, テーブル is given wrong. Can some native speaker maybe shed some light? It is super confusing.


    Both are correct! Report


    Is つ actually required? I thought it looked kind of weird because earlier I did a similar sentence without つ.


    The つ is used to show that it is an item is being counted, if the item does not already have a counting partical.


    Why do you use が here instead of は?


    Either should work here okay but が indicates stress on there being specific chairs, rather than a general existence of chairs.

    A response to "What is in the room" would take "There are four chairs" with が since the chairs are new information
    But a response to "How many chairs are there?" "There are four chairs" would take は since chairs are the topic of the conversation and you're stressing the number.


    Your answer is much clear than the previous ones. Thanks! Would you please take the trouble to answer why "四ついすがあります" cannot be an accepted answer in this specific question?


    Why do I need the ari before the ma's??


    arimasu is something like "exists", and is used for nonliving things


    Why both "いすが四つあります" and "四ついすがあります" are correct? Doesn't it matters if the order of the words are switch? And what would be the literally translation of each?


    From other replies I saw, they can be switched. I am guessing it would be like the switching of "I count four chairs." and "There are four chairs I count." Both mean the same thing, but the order is switched.

    This is a total guess. Hopefully someone with more knowledge explains this better than I.


    I have a brief idea of ga and wa (as in ga has more emphasis and wa is "is"), but why is this translation using ga when wa works as well? I'm typing the translation out instead of using the word bank, it would be helpful if someone can give me a pointer about what I didn't noticed. Right now my guess is that this sentence is an answer to the previous question "how many chairs are in the room?" but I am not sure about that.


    Can someone please tell me why 四個 instead of 四つ is wrong?


    個 is a counter for round objects only. While つ is a generic counter (useful if you don't know what counter you need but will make you sound like a child who can't speak). Basically, saying 四個 for chairs is a similar mistake as saying 4 slices of paper instead of 4 sheets of paper.


    個 actually has a very wide range of uses and is not specific to round things, though it is most commonly used with small and/or round things. It is an "articles" counter.


    四つ(yotsu) and 七つ (nanatsu) are the only counters that don't change the numbers (as far as duo's lessons go)




    What's wrong with 椅子が四台あります ? Isn't that more correct than 4つ, or do chairs use a different counter from other furniture?

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