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  5. "There is a flower vase on th…

"There is a flower vase on the desk."


July 11, 2017



つくえの上 is really fun to say. Thanks ✌


"Flower vase" sounds very awkward in English. We just say "vase", the most typical contents are flowers, and I can't think of any other type of vase that would be distinguished by using an attributive noun this way.


Could be a bamboo vase


机の上には花瓶があります。is what I wrote. Am I right, or am I confused about the usage of には?


I think adding "には" would make it more like "speaking of (things) on the desk, there is a vase." since it makes "机の上に" the topic. I'm pretty sure both would be valid translations in this case though, just a different emphasis of the sentence.


I'd like to know as well. Did you find out since then?


On the desk there is a vase

same overall meaning, but yes, には places the desktop as the subject in the query


Can I say つくえに instead?


You can, just you are not specifying it is "on" the table.


"Ni" means it is at or on the table and the meaning is obvious (no one will look for the vase under the desk). The correct English for this sentence would be "the vase is on top of the desk" and that is not what they asked.





Apparently they wont accept ある。


つくえの上 what does 「の」 do in that context?


It works here like a possessive article or "of".

The upper side (上)of (の) the desk (つくえ)

The word order is reversed compared with English.


Or the desk's (つくえの) top/upper-side (上)


What's the difference between 上に and 上の ?



[deactivated user]

    When you want to talk about the object that is above another object, you use 上の, because の is possessive, and it's like saying, "the thing that belongs to the other thing," so, saying, "Could you close that window on the bookshelf?" is like saying, "Could you close the bookshelf's above's window," which I know is really bad English grammar, but that's how I think of the way the の particle is used. 上に is used when you want to talk about putting something above something else, or if you want to talk about something existing on top of something else, such as in the example sentence you gave, which translates to "There is a vase on the desk."


    Firstly thanks for your answer and secondly I had the same thought than yours. One day I asked that question to a Japanese and this was his answer:

    「本棚の上の、あの窓を閉めてもらえる?」 Would you mind closing that window above the bookshelf for me?

    「机の上の本を取ってください。」 Please take a book on the desk.

    「机の上に花瓶があります。」 There is a vase on the table.

    「わたしの上に空があります。」 There is a sky above me. or There is a sky over me.

    Basically, the word 「上」 in Japanese has no distinction between “above”, “on”, and “over”. Judgment by context.


    Does desk have to go first? I put 花瓶が机の上にあります。 Why is this order wrong?

    [deactivated user]

      Why is it necessary to include 上 when the English sentence does not say above the desk, but on the desk?

      [deactivated user]

        Ok. I'll answer my own question. It's because whenever anyone places something on a desk, they are placing it above the desk.


        how about 花瓶が机の上にあります


        「机に花瓶があります」is incorrect? I think there's an assumption it's on top of the desk if not stated otherwise



        Shouldn`t the ha (は) be accepted in this context?


        Why is 机の上に花瓶はあります wrong?


        In "There is a flower vase on the desk." the "there is a flower vase" phrasing suggests that the vase is the new information, stressing the thing that is located on the desk; so the new information particle が makes more sense. It is a neutral statement of something's existence.

        は marks old information that provides context for the conversation. "On the topic of the flower vase...", "As for the flower vase..."
        It would better translate to "The flower vase is on the desk", answering the question of "Where is the flower vase?"


        Ohh, okay, thank you very much!


        『机の上に花瓶があります』= On the table, on top of, a flower vase, it exist.

        I always try to complicate things but breaking it down helps to solve the puzzle.


        This would less confusing if the target sentence was "There is a flower vase on the top of the desk."

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