"There is a dog."


March 16, 2018

This discussion is locked.


Why い and not あり?


You use います because a dog is animate. あります is used to say that there is an inanimate object. So for example:

人がいます: There is a person

猫がいます: There is a cat

木があります: There is a tree

コンビニがあります: There is a convenience store


人 = ひと 猫 = ねこ 木 = き




I see. So basically, います is used for things that move and あります is used for things that don't move. Is that correct?


Try reading tips before starting each lesson.


Well, to each their own. I personally think there are people who learn better with hands-on natural interactions.

Which means they may forego the tips at some point... And reach straight for the comments


When do you use が or ば?


が is used when information about a subject is important or situationally new to the listener. は is used once the same subject has been mentioned for the sentences following it. I believe は is also used when the subject word is before the question word, and が is used when the question word is before the subject.


If you used は, you would be saying "Dogs exist" or "There are dogs".


Imagine arguing over the existence of dogs.


As long as we can agree that horses don't exist... Thank god


Arguments happen... who are we to judge? ;-)


I think が would still translate to "There are dogs" since singular or plural is not distinguished here. But I agree that using は would change the meaning of the sentence to emphasize more on the existence part. I kind of read it like, "The existence of dogs is true." Of course this is not what it translates to but it helped me break down that は tends to focus on what comes after it and が tends to focus on what comes before it. Im still learning and using all the info I can aqcuire on how these particles are used.


... Said the dyslexic priest


How come on the cat version of this question it recommends adding the counter to specify a cat means "one cat", but for this question it just accepts "犬がいます" and that's it? Duo, you're being inconsistent in your grammar structures, and that's not helpful.


It's been a while since I've done whichever lesson these questions are in so I don't know what the cat sentence said, but for this question, it's just stating the existence of a dog or multiple dogs. "There is a dog", "A dog exists", "There are dogs" should all be accurate translations of this question. There's no counter here to tell you exactly how many dogs there are, so in a conversation you'd just have to determine the meaning via context, since「犬がいます」states an indefinite number of dogs.

"There is a cat" and "There is one cat" are basically identical sentences in English. If the Japanese sentence had a counter for a single cat, both should be correct, but "There are cats" wouldn't be a correct translation since it's stating a definite amount.


います is for living things, and あります for non-living? I got confused...


Why ぞれ is not used? There states that "There" is a dog...


It doesn't mean that there is a dog in a location (e.g. over there), it means that there is a dog that exists.

There is a dog = 犬がいます

There is a dog there = そこに犬がいます


Shouldn't 犬はいます be accepted?


Not really; your sentence is more "dogs exist", referring to dogs in general, not any specific dog.


そこに犬がいます it is correct? Duolingo says it doesn't


I think your sentence is more along the lines of "There's a dog there", specifically near the listener, but I'm pretty sure this question (er, statement?) is just trying to convey that a dog exists, not where it exists.

English is weird though… "There is a dog" CAN also mean "There is a dog there" if you were to emphasize the the first word. For example maybe someone was looking for any dog, and they finally found one, they might say "There's a dog!" and point at the dog, which would imply "There is a dog (over there)!" or perhaps "(Over) There is a dog!". But plainly saying "There is a dog" without any context/emphasis at all means you're saying a dog exists in general.

So to answer your question, I think your Japanese sentence is proper, but contains too much extra context that's not a part of the expected answer.


Why います and not これは?


います - exists (animate)
犬がいます "There is a dog/a dog exists" - Subject 'dog' exists

これは - "This (topic/subject)"
これは犬です "This is a dog" - Subject 'this' = dog


This is my most used phrase in every language I know ^-^

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