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Why is kuru used in the following sentences?

Jaffa

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Hello,

I've been studying Japanese for a few weeks and I am confused as to when I should use 'kuru'. To my (limited) understanding, 'iku' is used for movements away from the speaker or if the speaker is moving to a destination while 'kuru' is used for movement towards the speaker. With that logic, I understand how "I'm coming now!" is translated as "ima ikimasu!" instead of "ima kimasu!".

But here are a couple of sentences I came across in my textbook:
Ashita kimasu (I will come tomorrow)
Kinou hachijigoro daigaku ni kimashita (I came to university around 8 yesterday).

I don't understand why "kuru" is used instead of "iku" when the speaker is moving to the destinations.

Thanks. Any help would be much appreciated.
 

Mike Cash

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How do you know where the speaker was in those last two sentences?
 

masaegu

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Hello,

I've been studying Japanese for a few weeks and I am confused as to when I should use 'kuru'. To my (limited) understanding, 'iku' is used for movements away from the speaker or if the speaker is moving to a destination while 'kuru' is used for movement towards the speaker. With that logic, I understand how "I'm coming now!" is translated as "ima ikimasu!" instead of "ima kimasu!".

But here are a couple of sentences I came across in my textbook:
Ashita kimasu (I will come tomorrow)
Kinou hachijigoro daigaku ni kimashita (I came to university around 8 yesterday).

I don't understand why "kuru" is used instead of "iku" when the speaker is moving to the destinations.

Thanks. Any help would be much appreciated.
I never answer questions askied in romaji but since this is a good question, I will give you a big clue --- the location of the speaker the moment s/he uttered the sentences in question.

EDIT: Mike Cash beat me to it.
 

Jaffa

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I don't really know the location of the speaker the moment s/he uttered the sentences. Those sentences were just simple examples in my textbook and no context was given. I'm trying to understand but I just don't get it.

How does knowing the speaker's location affect the sentences? Wouldn't the speaker always be going towards his/her destination since a destination like a university can't move towards the speaker? Unless there are other times when you use 'kuru'...?
 

Mike Cash

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The information about where the speaker was is conveyed by his choice of "kuru" instead of "iku". You have to keep your mind and eyes open to picking up on stuff like that. You were just assuming the situation was one that called for "go" instead of picking up on the fact that he could be at the place where he was talking. There was even a translation there that should have made it obvious where he was.

Knowing the location affects if the same way it does in English. You don't still say "go" about your destination when you're already there.

Don't feel bad, though, this happens to everybody and you can expect it to happen a lot more. Hang in there. Keep asking questions.
 

Jaffa

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Oh. It did occur to me that the speaker could have been at the place where he was talking but what I didn't realize was that you don't still say "go" about your destination when you're already there. Oops. *(facepalm)* Anyway, for the first sentence I can see how kuru can be used but I still don't 100 percent understand why it is used. The second sentence though, has more words/context (dunno if this is the right word) and I do get it.

Thanks everyone for the help. =D
 

Toritoribe

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You can think the first example sentence "Ashita kimasu" is more close to "I will come HERE (again) tomorrow". (And "Ashita ikimasu" means "I will go THERE tomorrow".)
 
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