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A few verb-related questions

DylanK

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Hello everyone! Before I ask my questions, I first want to introduce myself: I'm Dylan, 16 years old, and I've been learning Japanese since July. My original interest was sparked by watching a variety of animes and solidified by my general interest in languages (for example, I also take Latin in school).
Moreso than simply learning Japanese and copying things, I want to know HOW things work. It's fun knowing that things work the way they do, but I seek a deeper understanding of the grammatical topics and such.
Anyway, let's go.

て-form is a noun (sort of)?

Something that had been bothering me for a bit is how constructions like ''てもいい'' and ''てはいけません'' work. I was confused by the fact that they take the particles they do, so I started brainstorming.
My solution was that the て-form functions as a noun. To compare, it seems like the participium form I've learned in Latin (which can also be substantivied into nouns).
This makes sense to me when you literally translate it.
''てもいいか'' = Is [action X] good (~okay) too (among the other actions I could be performing that you'd agree with)?
''てはいけません'' = As for [action X], you can't go (and do that).

Would I be right in thinking this?

てくる、ている、ていく

I would like to hear how exactly the former and latter work. As I've interpreted it, てくる is a continious state up until a point, ている is just a general continious state and ていく is a continious state from a point onward. Could someone give me some explanation when and how to use てくる and ていく?

Looking forward to some insightful responses!
 

nekojita

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て form can't be considered as a noun, grammatically. It might look like it fits as an explanation for those patterns, but it doesn't in a lot of others. There is a verb conjugation often used to form nouns, and it's the masu-stem (e.g. the masu form minus the "masu").

頼む (to request)
頼み (a request) - you can say, e.g. 頼みがある (頼んでがある would be ungrammatical).
(note - this is not "productive", so you can't just noun every verb you run across. But it is common).

Incidentally, there are quite a few forms where you can insert て、も、なんて and other things between the て and what follows for contrast/emphasis, etc, but て would never be followed by を・が・に

てくる・ていく are easier once you understand that くる・いく work the same way for both distance and time.
くる = coming towards the speaker (from past until now, from there to here)
いく = going away from the speaker (from now onwards, from here to there).

With てくる・ていく, I think of a change over time, not sudden.

ている is more complicated because depending on the verb and context it can be an ongoing action (I am eating), a state (I am married), an ongoing habitual action (I study Japanese), etc. But generally it refers to the present, and doesn't imply anything about the state before or after.

e.g. if you say you "分かっている" something, it just means you understand it now. If you "分かってきた", it used to be that you didn't understand, but over time you have come to understand it.

The problem with trying to understand the "why" is that to really get into that stuff you have to first learn enough Japanese to read linguistics papers. While interesting trivia, it's not a good use of time at the beginner stage.
 

DylanK

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て form can't be considered as a noun, grammatically. It might look like it fits as an explanation for those patterns, but it doesn't in a lot of others. There is a verb conjugation often used to form nouns, and it's the masu-stem (e.g. the masu form minus the "masu").

頼む (to request)
頼み (a request) - you can say, e.g. 頼みがある (頼んでがある would be ungrammatical).
(note - this is not "productive", so you can't just noun every verb you run across. But it is common).

Incidentally, there are quite a few forms where you can insert て、も、なんて and other things between the て and what follows for contrast/emphasis, etc, but て would never be followed by を・が・に

てくる・ていく are easier once you understand that くる・いく work the same way for both distance and time.
くる = coming towards the speaker (from past until now, from there to here)
いく = going away from the speaker (from now onwards, from here to there).

With てくる・ていく, I think of a change over time, not sudden.

ている is more complicated because depending on the verb and context it can be an ongoing action (I am eating), a state (I am married), an ongoing habitual action (I study Japanese), etc. But generally it refers to the present, and doesn't imply anything about the state before or after.

e.g. if you say you "分かっている" something, it just means you understand it now. If you "分かってきた", it used to be that you didn't understand, but over time you have come to understand it.

The problem with trying to understand the "why" is that to really get into that stuff you have to first learn enough Japanese to read linguistics papers. While interesting trivia, it's not a good use of time at the beginner stage.
Thank you for taking the time to write this all!

I understand that going to deeply into the ''why'' is inadvisable at the current level of Japanese I know. Therefor, I try not to look too deep into it and make logical contexts based on the grammar experience I already have. It really just helps me enforce what I learn in a more sensible way than simply ''it is like that because it is''.

I was somewhat aware of the actual ''noun-ification'' that Japanese has. Also, I know that the て-form isn't an actual noun, it simply behaves alike one in some situations. I must've worded it vaguely.

I'll try and wrap my head around the てくる・ていく thing. Could someone perhaps give some good examples of (common) usages of these?

I will work on making my posts a bit more clear by the way. The way I wrote it isn't the most efficient to get the actual point across. I believe that I made it seem like I have various weird ideas about Japanese grammar whereas they are more mnemonic devices than anything else.
 
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