What's new

Confusion with the particles

konankun

Registered
Joined
Jul 13, 2014
Messages
2
Hello everyone!

I wish to receive some help concerning some Japanese sentence I came across this morning, which is confusing me quite a lot. I hope some of you will be able to explain things to me


I received a flashcard from a website, which states the below

私は、肉は食べないが、魚と卵は食べる。

but

魚がエサを見ている

Now my understanding was that wa followed the subject of the sentence and that the object should be preceded by (w)o を

Why is the sentence

私は、肉食べないが、魚と卵食べる。

and not

私は、肉食べないが、魚と卵食べる。

the first ha following watashi is following the subject => no problem however niku is NOT the subject of the sentence and neither are sakana to tamago? Or am i understanding the sentence wrong? Niku is not eating anything and neither are sakana or tamago?

Also, would we not say

私は魚と卵を食べる。and 私は、肉を食べない ??

I am very confused and it is kind of driving me mad haha.

Can a gentle soul please clarify this for me?


Many thanks and a lovely day to you all !
 
Joined
Apr 22, 2014
Messages
53
Ratings
1
は is not just is/am/are. is a topic particle not subject..
Think は as 'as for/about'

so '私は、肉食べないが、魚と卵食べる' means:
'About me, As for the meat (I) don't eat (it) but as for the fish and egg, (I) eat (them)'
 

Mike Cash

骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう
Joined
Mar 15, 2002
Messages
16,454
Ratings
1,568
は is not just is/am/are. is a topic particle not subject..
Think は as 'as for/about'

so '私は、肉食べないが、魚と卵食べる' means:
'About me, As for the meat (I) don't eat (it) but as for the fish and egg, (I) eat (them)'
It is the contrastive use of は.

I don't wish to sound nasty here, but thinking of は as equating to English modal verbs and mentally treating it as "as for" are both poor habits to get into.
 
Joined
Apr 22, 2014
Messages
53
Ratings
1
thinking of は as equating to English modal verbs and mentally treating it as "as for" are both poor habits to get into.
Apologies, I know the topic particle essentially identifies what it is that we're talking about... I just could not come up with a better English translation.
 

konankun

Registered
Joined
Jul 13, 2014
Messages
2
ok. Thank you very much to both of you for your replies.

So would my suggestions : 私は、肉を食べないが、魚と卵を食べる。 be wrong?

And what about 私は魚と卵を食べる。and 私は、肉を食べない? These are correct aren't they?

How would you Mike explain the use of ha there? how would you translate it in English so i understand when to use it? :)

Thank you !
 
Top