Wednesday, October 11, 2006


One problem that comes up commonly in the upper levels of Japanese study is the sheer frequency of vocabulary and with that, grammar. This makes it difficult to know when to properly use a number of grammar patterns. When to use けれども instead of けど or が is a simple example. You have a lot of choices, and it's easy to get complacent when you have one or two of those choices down pat. Sometimes though, the nuance would be better conveyed by using a different grammar pattern or a different word.

In this post, I'd like to target three grammar patterns that have consistently given me trouble.


I’ve found that the above are very similar. Accordingly, I’ve tried to differentiate between them by attaching the following translations:

からいうと*: In regards to~/ In respect to~

からすると**: Judging from~ (reason or basis for a judgment)

から見ると***: From the (a) standpoint of~/ From X’s point of view~

*からいえば and からいって are also acceptable forms.
**からすれば is also an acceptable form.
***から見ればから見て、and から見ても are also acceptable forms.

In regards to his ability, he isn’t an especially good worker, but since he has a good nature, he is liked by his boss.

Judging from the look on the chief’s face, it looks like the company didn’t do too well last month.

From my point of view, working in Kyoto wasn’t very fun.

It’s this kind of grammar that although at first glance seems the same (and can often be used interchangeably) that is the hardest to use due to the relatively minute differences in nuance.

1 comment:

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