Saturday, June 19, 2010


Part IV of this series will explore emphatic particles with the similar meaning of "even." Most of these bad boys are not commonly heard in conversation, but pop up frequently enough in readings that they are important to at least store in the back of your mind. So, from the first part of the 強調 section of my grammar book, here ya go:

1. たりとも ~ない: Not even ~
例文: 私は一秒たりともあなたのことを疑ったことなどありません。
I didn't doubt you for even one second.
*Notes: Emphasizes complete denial. This is not used with larger measurements, i.e. 一年、1キロ.

2.といえども(~ない): Not even (one) ~
例文: 今は一時間といえども無駄には出来ない。
I'm so busy now that I can't afford to waste even one hour.
*Notes: Strong overall negation. Stresses not even one of some minimal unit exists. This is interchangeable with たりとも~ない. Though not as old-fashioned, it is still mainly used in writing only.

3.すら: Even ~
例文: これは小学生(に)すら分かる簡単な問題だ。
That problem is so easy even an elementary student could understand it.
*Notes: Slightly more literary than さえ, but having same meaning. Gives extreme example of something and then adds that other natural factors exist. Particles before this construction are often left off.

4.だに: Just ~; even ~
例文: テロで大勢の人が殺されるなんて考えるだに恐ろしい。
Even just thinking about the large number of people killed by terrorism is awful.
*Notes: Used to convey idea that "Even just doing something is X." This construction is used with a limited number of cognitive, Sino-Japanese verbs, such as 想像する、聞く、考える、思う、etc. It is an almost exclusively written.

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