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Luthien Rogue

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Something my friend told me a few years ago:

ga - ga also means the the word is the subject, but
is not used as often as wa. There are certain times
when you have to use ga, but we're not that far yet

o - sometimes written as "wo." o means that the word
is the object of the sentence.

Examples:
I wa movie o saw.
He wa ball o threw.
She wa runs.
They wa Japanese o speak!

I haven't often seen "o" being used... why is that?

Also, could someone explain to me the difference between ha and ga? I have read many Threads and articles about this, but it is still not clear to me. :\

An explanation I have seen:

The difference is:
If I say: Watashi wa Mark desu. It means that the information I want to highlight is after the "wa".
If I say: Watashi ga Mark desu. It means the information I want to highlight is before the "ga".
Here are two examples:
If someone asks me "What is your name?" and if someone else asks "Who is Mark?" In English, the answer to both is "I am Mark". But in Japanese the answer to "What is your name?" is: Watashi wa Mark desu. Because "Mark" is the information I want to give.
For the question: "Who is Mark?" for example when a teacher is asking a group of students, then I will answer: "Watashi ga Mark desu". Because "Mark" is already given, the unknown information is who. So in the answer, I want to highlight "I", therefore I use "ga" to indicate that is the information I want to focus on.

Is that correct? I thought particles affect the word before them?

Thanks~! ^.^
 

Mikawa Ossan

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Ah, yes, particles! The Japanese answer to "a" and "the" in English.

As far as I know, the "Mark" explanation you quoted is correct. It's all about emphasis. Another usage in which ha only can be used is in comparisons. For example,
watashi ha suki da kedo, Mark ha suki jya nai. (I like it, but Mark doesn't like it.)
In this case what is being compared is watashi and Mark. It's kind of like saying, "Well, I like it, but you know, Mark doesn't." Here you could not substitute ga for ha. I think it has something to do with the fact that ha has a functions of kind of restricting the sentence content to the subject attached to it. So you're restricting the liking to yourself and the not liking to Mark. Another example of this usage would be:
tonikaku watashi ha sou omou. (At any rate that's what I think.)
Here you're restricting the thinking to yourself only. I would say this if I had a disagreement of opinion with a friend and I didn't want to argue about the point any more. This way I limit my thinking to myself so my friend is free to think as he likes. Correct me if I'm wrong, everyone!

Ga is actually used quite often, and so is wo, but wo is often deleted in speech.
 

Mike Cash

骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう
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Luthien Rogue said:
I haven't often seen "o" being used... why is that?

1. It can very often be dropped in conversation with no adverse effect on comprehensibility...so it very often is.

2. Just a guess, but perhaps your exposure to Japanese has been rather limited thus far. The more you're exposed, the more you'll see it.
 

Luthien Rogue

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Thank you for your replies. 😌

Mikecash -- I am a total newbie. ^.~ It's just that, I am now being taught by someone else, and they have yet to mention it, so I was a bit confused.
 

studyonline

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In a casual conversation, you may hear something like;

テレビ見る? 

ご飯食べる?

Both questions do not have "wo" or "o". It is possible to be omitted, making the sentence sounds casual. We skip wo in a conversation when talking to friends, for example.
 
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