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Call a dog and they come, call
a cat and they take a message
and get back to you later.
Oldwrench, chat 13th Apr

 
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  Correct Usage Of The 'ga' Particle

 

Okay here's an interesting thing I just found out. I found out how to use the particle ga. It is definately the most complicated part of the particles. Well not ga itself but when to use it instead of wa. I found out that it is alot easier to explain if I tell you that wa is a topic marker and ga is the subject so I went back and changed those lessons. Note that I wasn't wrong, I just found a better way to help you understand it.

 

This entire lesson will be about when to use ga or wa.

 

Ga is a grammatical subject marker. That means that it is very simple.

Wa can literally translate to "as for"

So "Watashi wa ablubond-sensei desu." could literally mean: "As for me, I am a doctor."

This is still used the same way I told you before, I am just making it easier to understand. I hope.

 

When you use ga, you use it when opening a new subject.

Ashita haha ga kimasu. = Tommorow my mother is coming.

 

This is said when opening the conversation about your mother.

Haha wa o-tera ga suki desu = As for my mom, she likes temples.

 

Now as your second sentnce in the conversation you might use the sentence above. This is because your mother is already an established topic, now you are introducing the temple as the grammatical subject. Please get this because I have no better way of explaining it.

 

The next thing about ga.

Dare ga kite imasu ka.

The point of the question is who has arrived-- emphasis on the subject.

Dare wa kite imasu ka makes no sense. You can never use wa with an unknown pronoun like dare (who). What does it mean to have "who" be the "topic" of the sentence? ("As for 'who', have they arrived yet?"-- a rather strange thing to say, huh?)

The answer to the above question is, of course, keoland-san ga kite imasu if it is keoland who has already arrived. keoland-san wa kite imasu answers the question "What has keoland done?"

 

You can use multiple wa particles in a sentence where as there can only be one ga.

 

example:

Nomimono wa watashi wa biiru ga ii desu = As for something to drink, I would like beer.

So this could complicatedly (is that a word?) be said " As for me, as for something to drink, I will have a beer." But it is better said the first way.

 

Now to tell you a little bit in detail about wa.

 

Wa is very elegant and always gets a person to listen a little better than when you use ga. This does not mean use wa in place of ga when you want to have someone listen more.

 

Wa also emphasizes the predicate of the sentence.

So it is like this:

Amerika ni wa keeki ga amasugiru. In America cakes are too sweet.

The speaker is emphasizing that cakes are too sweet  in America.

You could also create a sentence with "flowers" as the topic, but referring to the direct object-- maybe "I gave Julia the flowers." In this case, you would say, Hana wa Julia-chan ni agemashita. The unstated subject is "I." (To be precise, this sentence actually translates as, "As for the flowers, I gave them to Julia.")

 

So wa can also take the place of other particles. When the grammatical subject is unstated.

 

OK that's all I can remember for now. This lesson probably either completely confused you or completely made things clear for you. I am guessing of the first. But that's okay, just ask questions and I will do my best to answer them.

 

Ja ne


 
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