How many verbs are there in Japanese

Let's do things with verbs!




The role of verbs

We learned how to describe nouns in different ways using other nouns or adjectives. We already have a lot of expressiveness. However, we still cannot express actions. This is where verbs come into play. In Japanese, verbs always come at the end of a main or subordinate clause. Since we have not yet learned how to form subordinate clauses or concatenate main clauses, this means at the moment that all sentences that contain a verb also end with that verb. Next, we will get to know the two main groups of verbs, which will allow us to define the conjugation rules precisely later. Before we go any further, there is one important thing that we need to know.
Requires a grammatically complete sentence nothing else as a verb (including the copula).

In other words: In contrast to German, all you need to form a grammatically complete sentence is a verb, and nothing else! Understanding this fundamental quality is essential to understanding Japanese. And that's why even the simplest Japanese sentences cannot be translated into German. All conjugations are based on the dictionary form (as the verbs are listed in the dictionary).

A grammatically complete sentence:
(1) 食 べ る 。- Eating. (Possible translations are e.g .: I eat / you eat / you eat ...)

The division into ru-verbs and u-verbs

Almost all Japanese verbs can be divided into two groups: ru verbs (一段 動詞) and u verbs (五 段 動詞). The only two verbs that do not fall into these categories are 「す る」 - "to do" and 「来 る」 - "to come". Otherwise the conjugation rules are almost always the same, depending on which group the verb belongs to. The method of distinguishing the two groups of verbs from each other is pretty straightforward and straightforward.

As you may recall, each verb has a "kana tail" (okurigana) that can be altered to conjugate the verb. If you write the verb in Latin letters (called 「ロ ー マ 字」 in Japanese) and it ends with either "iru" or "eru", then it is a ru verb. For example, the transliteration of 「食 べ る」 is 'taberu', and since it ends in 'eru', it is a ru verb. Another example: 「起 き る」, whose transcription is 'okiru', is also a ru-verb. All other verbs are u-verbs. There are a few exceptions to this rule, as a few verbs that were supposed to be ru verbs are actually u verbs. Note that ru verbs always end with 「る」 and u verbs always end with a syllable that contains / u /. Unfortunately, this includes 「る」, besides 「つ」 、 「す」 、 「く」 、 「ぐ」 、 「む」 、 「ぶ」 、 「う」 and 「ぬ」 (「死 ぬ」 is the only one on 「ぬ 」ending verb).

Because of the "acoustic consistency" of these rules, the effect arises after a while that u-verbs "sound" like u-verbs, and also ru-verbs. Until then, you may have some difficulty distinguishing ru verbs from u verbs. If you're not sure how to match, Jim Breen's WWWJDIC tells you which group each verb belongs to (look it up, right?). ru verbs are marked with (v1), and u verbs with (v5r).

verbロ ー マ 字
食 べ るtaberu
着 るkiru
信 じ るshinjiru
寝 るneru
起 き るOKiru
出 るderu
掛 け るkakeru
捨 て るsuteru
調 べ るshiraberu
      
verbロ ー マ 字
話 すhanasu
聞 くkiku
泳 ぐoyogu
遊 ぶasobu
待 つmatsu
飲 むnomu
直 るnaoru
死 ぬshinu
買 うchew
      
verbロ ー マ 字
入 るHairu
知 るshiru
し ゃ べ るshaberu
切 るkiru
      
verbロ ー マ 字
す るsuru
く るkuru

Examples

Here are a few example sentences that use ru verbs, u verbs, and exception verbs.
(1) ア リ ス は食 べ る。- Alice eats.
(2) ジ ム が遊 ぶ。- Jim is the one who plays.
(3) ボ ブ もす る。- Bob does it too.
The translation was last viewed in 2005/10/4