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[Guide needed] Japanese Word Structure

Hi, I am Indonesian learning Japanese, so far i observe that Japanese have different sentence structures than Indonesian and English. Is there any guides i can follow regarding Japanese structure and conjuctions?

November 28, 2017



I would also appreciate a guide. (Maybe some outlines under the lessons). I felt like I was doing well and then suddenly: deep end of the pool when it came to what order things are in longer sentences. I'm picking it up slowly just through trial and error but it feels a lot more frustrating than it needs to be.


The best suggest I heard was Japanese is like Yoda-speak. From Star wars


Well, the japanese sentence structure isn't as complicated as it seems, but if you're new to it, take some time to get used to it. In english (don't know about indonesian though, sorry! ;p) our sentence structure is SVO, meaning "subject-verb-object", for example:

"Emily eats apples" Emily being the subject, "to eat" being the verb and "apple" being the object.

In japanese, however, their structure is SOV, meaning "subject-object-verb", therefore, you will always put verbs in the end of your sentences. This is one of the reasons that makes japanese learners a little bit confuse, because you have to hear almost the whole sentence to understand what it's all about. For example:

田中さんはりんごを食べます Tanaka-san ha ringo (w)o tabemasu Literally, would be written like: Mr Tanaka apples eats

"Tanaka" being the subject, "ringo" being the object and "tabemasu" being the verb. It isn't that difficult, but it might sound a little bit weird in the beginning. Hope it helps you ;)


1- subject is usually ommited in a sentence, especially if it has been previously established in a conversation, no subject is actually needed to add further information. Pronouns are also not necessary (most pronouns would be considered too casual anyway). 2- object of the sentence comes "second", direct object, adjective, etc, is in a middle block of its own. 3- verb always comes last. It's actually sometimes hard for translators to transcribe longer and more complex sentences, as a myriad of information will flow in, and then the key part necessary to translate a sentence in English will arrive only at the end.

-> 「平井さんは来週に中国へ行きます」 Hirai-San is going to China next week.

The subject 「平井さん」 is at the beginning, object and information are in the middle and the verb「 行きます」 at the end.

The particule は (normally read as ha, but here is read wa) indicates the theme, に indicates the time, へ where you're going/location (literally : Hirai-san is going in the direction of China).

That's the basis of Japanese syntax, quite easy in my opinion, you just have to inverse everything, and in time you will get completely used to it.

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