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Language Japanese Grammar - Part 4

  1. JREF
    The copula だ (da)

    The copula da behaves very much like a verb or an adjective in terms of conjugation.

    Stem forms of the copula-
    Attributive form (連体形 rentaikei)である (de aru)
    Terminal form (終止形 shūshikei)だ (da, informal)

    です (desu, polite)

    でございます (de gozaimasu, respectful)

    Continuative form ((連用形 ren'youkei)で (de)
    Imperfective form (未然形 mizenkei)では (de wa)
    Hypothetical form (仮定形 kateikei)[/B]なら (nara)
    Imperative form (命令形 meireikei)impossible
    Note that there are no potential, causative, or passive forms of the copula, just as with adjectives. The following are someexamples.

    ジョンは学生だ。
    JON wa gakusei da
    John is a student.

    明日も晴れなら、ピクニクしよう。
    ashita mo hare nara, PIKUNIKU shiyō
    If tomorrow is clear too, let’s have a picnic.

    In continuative conjugations, では (de wa) is often contracted in speech to じゃ(ja); for some kinds of informal speech ja is preferrable to de wa, or is the only possibility.

    Conjugations of the copula--
    nonpastinformalだ (da)
    -politeです (desu)
    -respectfulでございます (de gozaimasu)
    pastinformalcont. + あった (atta)

    だった (datta)

    -politeでした (deshita)
    -respectfulでございました (de gozaimashita)
    negative nonpastinformalcont. + はない (wa nai)
    -politecont. + はありません (wa arimasen)
    -respectfulcont. + はございません (wa gozaimasen)
    negative pastinformalcont. + はなかった (nakatta)
    -politecont. + はありませんでした (wa arimasen deshita)
    -respectfulcont. + はございませんでした (wa gozaimasen deshita)
    conditionalinformalhyp. + ば (ba)
    -polite

    respectful

    cont. + あれば (areba)
    provisionalinformalなら (nara)
    -polite

    respectful

    same as conditional
    volitionalinformalだろう (darō)
    -politeでしょう (deshō)
    -respectfulでございましょう (de gozaimashō)
    adverbial and -te formsinformalcont.
    -politecont. + ありまして (arimashite)
    -respectfulcont. + ございまして (gozaimashite)

    Japanese Grammar Contents
    • Part 1: Textual classifications; nouns, pronouns, and other deictics
    • Part 2: Conjugable words: verbs
    • Part 3: Conjugable words: adjectives
    • Part 4: Conjugable words: the copula だ da
    • Part 5: Euphonic changes, colloquial contractions
    • Part 6: Adverbs, sound symbolism, conjunctions and interjections
    • Part 7: Particles
    • Part 8: Auxiliary verbs

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