良い

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Japanese[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

Kanji in this term

Grade: 4
kun’yomi
Alternative spellings
善い
好い
吉い
佳い
宜い
可い

Modern form of Old Japanese adjective よし (yoshi).[1][2][3]

/joɕi/ (classical 終止形 (shūshikei) or terminal form) → /joki/ (classical 連体形 (rentaikei) or attributive form) → /joi/ (modern shūshikei and rentaikei)

Pronunciation[edit]

  • Tokyo pitch accent of inflected forms of "良い"
Source: Online Japanese Accent Dictionary
Stem forms
Continuative (連用形) 良く [yóꜜkù]
Terminal (終止形) 良い [yóꜜì]
Attributive (連体形) 良い [yóꜜì]
Key constructions
Informal negative 良くない くない [yóꜜkùnàì]
Informal past 良かった かった [yóꜜkàttà]
Informal negative past 良くなかった くなかった [yóꜜkùnàkàttà]
Formal 良いです いです [yóꜜìdèsù]
Conjunctive 良くて くて [yóꜜkùtè]
Conditional 良ければ ければ [yóꜜkèrèbà]

Adjective[edit]

() (yoi-i (adverbial () (yoku))

  1. good
    Antonyms: 悪い, 駄目
Usage notes[edit]
  • Most often written in hiragana. The kanji spelling is generally reserved for more formal writing.
Inflection[edit]
Derived terms[edit]

Suffix[edit]

() (-yoi

  1. easy
Usage notes[edit]
  • Most often written in hiragana. The kanji spelling is generally reserved for more formal writing.
  • Attaches to the 連用形 (ren'yōkei, continuative or stem form) of a verb. Example:
    ()()yomiyoieasy to read
However, in modern Japanese, the adjective 安い, 易い (yasui, easy, easygoing) is more commonly used to express this meaning.

Etymology 2[edit]

Kanji in this term

Grade: 4
kun’yomi
Alternative spellings
善い
好い

Phonetic shift from the Old Japanese yoshi form of yoi above. Already in use as early as the Nihon Shoki, circa 720,[1][2][3] then becoming common in eastern Japanese from the Edo period.[2] This form is now obsolete, though it may still be found in some dialects.

/joɕi/ (classical 終止形 (shūshikei) or terminal form) → /eɕi/ (classical 終止形 (shūshikei) or terminal form) → /eki/ (classical 連体形 (rentaikei) or attributive form) → /ei/ (modern shūshikei and rentaikei)

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

() (ei-i (adverbial () (eku))

  1. (obsolete) good

Etymology 3[edit]

Kanji in this term

Grade: 4
kun’yomi
Alternative spellings
善い
好い

Phonetic shift from ei above. This is now the most common form used in casual spoken Japanese.[1][2][3]

/ei//ii/

Pronunciation[edit]

  • Tokyo pitch accent of inflected forms of "いい"
Source: Online Japanese Accent Dictionary
Stem forms
Continuative (連用形) よく [yóꜜkù]
Terminal (終止形) いい [íꜜì]
Attributive (連体形) いい [íꜜì]
Key constructions
Informal negative よくない くない [yóꜜkùnàì]
Informal past よかった かった [yóꜜkàttà]
Informal negative past よくなかった くなかった [yóꜜkùnàkàttà]
Formal いいです いです [íꜜìdèsù]
Conjunctive よくて くて [yóꜜkùtè]
Conditional よければ ければ [yóꜜkèrèbà]

Adjective[edit]

() (ii-i (adverbial () (yoku))

  1. (colloquial, informal) good
  2. (colloquial, predicative only) enough; not wanted any more.
    (さけ)もういい
    sake wa mō ii
    I have had enough wine/I don't want any more wine.
Usage notes[edit]
  • Most often written in hiragana. The kanji spelling is generally reserved for more formal writing.
  • The ii form does not inflect — it is only used in the 終止形 (shūshikei, terminal form) and 連体形 (rentaikei, attributive form) of ii. All other grammatical forms are based on the yoi form above. Compare the 連用形 (ren'yōkei, continuative or adverbial form) yoku or the 過去形 (kakokei, past tense) yokatta: there is no *iku or *ikatta form.
  • In ironic usages denoting "very bad; embarrassing", the ii form is preferred to the yoi form.
Inflection[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1988, 国語大辞典(新装版) (Kokugo Dai Jiten, Revised Edition) (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Shogakukan
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2006, 大辞林 (Daijirin), Third Edition (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Sanseidō, →ISBN
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 1995, 大辞泉 (Daijisen) (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Shogakukan, →ISBN
  4. 4.0 4.1 1998, NHK日本語発音アクセント辞典 (NHK Japanese Pronunciation Accent Dictionary) (in Japanese), Tōkyō: NHK, →ISBN