Appendix:Japanese verbs

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Modern Japanese[edit]

This section deals only with Japanese as written and spoken in 21st and late 20th centuries, using terminology and the analysis from traditional grammar (which was developed by Shinkichi Hashimoto and also known as  (がっ) (こう) (ぶん) (ぽう) (gakkō-bunpō, school grammar)). Alternative terminology and analyses are possible, and have been widely employed in textbooks targeting non-native speakers. The following table compares the forms and conjugation classes in traditional grammar and their equivalents in alternative grammars:

Traditional grammar Alternative analysis
未然形 (mizenkei, imperfective or irrealis form) ない形 (nai-kei, nai form) minus the -nai, also the stem of 受身形 (ukemikei, passive form) and 使役形 (shiekikei, causative form), as well as the stem of 意向形 (ikōkei, volitional form) and 可能形 (kanōkei, potential form) before contraction
連用形 (ren'yōkei, continuative or stem form) ます形 (masu-kei, masu form) minus the -masu, also the stem of て形 (te-kei, te form) and た形 (ta-kei, ta form) before contraction
終止形 (shūshikei, terminal form) 基本形 (kihonkei, lemma form) or 辞書形 (jishokei, dictionary form)
連体形 (rentaikei, attributive form)
仮定形 (kateikei, hypothetical form) ば形 (ba-kei, ba form) or 条件形 (jokenkei, conditional form) minus the -ba
命令形 (meireikei, imperative form) 命令形 (meireikei, imperative form)
五段活用 (godan katsuyō, godan or five-grade conjugation) Group I, -u verbs, or consonant-stem verbs
上一段活用 (kami ichidan katsuyō, kami ichidan or upper-monograde conjugation) Group II, -ru verbs, or vowel-stem verbs
下一段活用 (shimo ichidan katsuyō, shimo ichidan or lower-monograde conjugation)
カ行変格活用 (ka-gyō henkaku katsuyō, k-irregular conjugation) Group III or irregular verbs
サ行変格活用 (sa-gyō henkaku katsuyō, s-irregular conjugation)

Conjugation classes[edit]

Five-grade (五段 godan)[edit]

To this class belongs to verbs whose base ends in -k, -g, -s, -t, -n, -b, -m, -r, or -w. In the dictionary form, the endings become く ku, ぐ gu, す su, つ tsu, ぬ nu, ぶ bu, む mu, る ru, and う u. The conjugation is as follows:

Dictionary form Base 未然形
mizenkei
連用形
ren'yōkei
終止形
shūshikei
連体形
rentaikei
仮定形
kateikei
命令形
meireikei
Volitional1 音便 onbin forms Notes
kaku
書く
kak- kaka-
kaki
kaku
kaku
kake-
kake
ka
こう
kaita, kaite
いた・かいて
oyogu
泳ぐ
oyog- oyoga-
およ
oyogi
およ
oyogu
およ
oyogu
およ
oyoge-
およ
oyoge
およ
oyo
およごう
oyoida, oyoide
およいだ・およいで
hanasu
話す
hanas- hanasa-
はな
hanashi
はな
hanasu
はな
hanasu
はな
hanase-
はな
hanase
はな
hana
はなそう
hanashita, hanashite
はなした・はなして
matsu
待つ
mat- mata-
machi
matsu
matsu
mate-
mate
ma
とう
matta, matte
った・まって
shinu
死ぬ
sin- shina-
shini
shinu
shinu
shine-
shine
shi
のう
shinda, shinde
んだ・しんで
asobu
遊ぶ
asob- asoba-
あそ
asobi
あそ
asobu
あそ
asobu
あそ
asobe-
あそ
asobe
あそ
aso
あそぼう
asonda, asonde
あそんだ・あそんで
yasumu
休む
yasum- yasuma-
やす
yasumi
やす
yasumu
やす
yasumu
やす
yasume-
やす
yasume
やす
yasu
やすもう
yasunda, yasunde
やすんだ・やすんで
kaeru
帰る
kaer- kaera-
かえ
kaeri
かえ
kaeru
かえ
kaeru
かえ
kaere-
かえ
kaere
かえ
kae
かえろう
kaetta, kaette
かえった・かえって
iu
言う
iw- iwa-
ii
iu
iu
ie-
ie
iō
おう
itta, itte
った・いって
2
Special conjugation (empty slots are regular)
iku
行く
ik- itta, itte
った・いって
For the verb 行く iku “to go”
kudasaru
下さる
kudasar- kudasari, kudasai(-masu)
くださ, くださ(ます)
kudasai
くださ
For the honorific verbs いらっしゃる irrasharu, 仰る ossharu, 下さる kudasaru, なさる nasaru, ござる gozaru
tou
問う
tow- touta, toute
とうた, とうて
For the two verbs 問う tou “to ask” and 請う kou “to ask, to beg”
Notes
  1. For volitional forms such as kakoo, some versions of the katsuyōkei system list the kako- part as an alternative 未然形 mizenkei, and some list it as a seventh katsuyōkei form. The -oo ending is spelt in historical kana orthography (歴史的仮名遣い) as -au (e.g. yasumoo as やすまう), reflecting its historical derivation.
  2. Historically, the -w ending for all such verbs was originally a -p, hence the historical kana spelling (歴史的仮名遣い) for, say, いう is いふ, with the six katsuyōkei forms いは, いひ, いふ, いふ, いへ, いへ.

In traditional Japanese grammar, the final consonant of the base is analysed as part of the 語尾 gobi “ending”. Hence, a verb such as 休む yasum-u is segmented as (語幹 gokan “stem”) yasu- + (語尾 gobi “ending”) -mu, with the -mu becoming -ma, -mi, -mu, -mu, -me, -me for the six katsuyōkei forms. The volitional form is segmented as yasu-mo-o, with the -mo- being the ending and the final -o (spelt う) a 助動詞 jodōshi “auxiliary”. Since the kana used to write the endings (Ca, Ci, Cu, Cu, Ce, and Ce, plus the Co for the volitional, for a verb ending in -C) span all five 段 dan “rows, or grades” of the 五十音図 gojūonzu “fifty sound table”, the class is called 五段 godan “five-grade”, and because they are on the same column, a verb whose base ends in -C is said to conjugate according to Ca行五段活用 Ca-gyō godan katsuyō “five-grade conjugation on the Ca column” For example, 休む yasumu has マ行五段活用 ma-gyō godan katsuyō “five-grade conjugation on the ma- column”. 五段 godan “five-grade” conjugation was originally 四段 yodan “quadrigrade”, because the 語尾 gobi “ending” of the volitional was spelt as Ca in historical kana spelling (歴史的仮名遣い), not the current Co.

Upper monograde (上一段 kami ichidan)[edit]

To this class belongs to verbs whose base ends in -i. The dictionary form adds -ru to the base. The conjugation is as follows:

Dictionary form Base 未然形
mizenkei
連用形
ren'yōkei
終止形
shūshikei
連体形
rentaikei
仮定形
kateikei
命令形
meireikei1
miru
見る
mi- mi-
mi
miru
miru
mire-
miro, miyo
, み
Notes
  1. -ro is the spoken imperative and -yo is the written imperative.

In traditional Japanese grammar, the final syllable of the base is analysed as part of the 語尾 gobi “ending”. Hence a verb such as 起きる oki-ru is segmented as (語幹 gokan “stem”) o- + (語尾 gobi “ending”) -kiru, with the -kiru becoming -ki, -ki, -kiru, -kiru, -kire, -kiro/-kiyo for the six katsuyōkei forms. (Verbs with a one-syllable base such as 見る miru conjugates in the same way as endings.) A verb whose base ends in -Ci is said to conjugate according to Ca行上一段活用 Ca-gyō kami ichidan katsuyō “upper monograde conjugation on the Ca column” because the endings begin with the kana Ci, which is on the Ca column and i row (upper row). For example, 起きる okiru has カ行上一段活用 ka-gyō kami ichidan katsuyō “upper monograde conjugation on the ka column”.

Lower monograde (下一段 shimo ichidan)[edit]

To this class belongs to verbs whose base ends in -e. The dictionary form adds -ru to the base. The conjugation is as follows:

Dictionary form Base 未然形
mizenkei
連用形
ren'yōkei
終止形
shūshikei
連体形
rentaikei
仮定形
kateikei
命令形
meireikei1
deru
出る
de- de-
de
deru
deru
dere-
dero, deyo
, で
Notes
  1. -ro is the spoken imperative and -yo is the written imperative. The verb くれる kureru “to give” has an irregular imperative form くれ kure.

In traditional Japanese grammar, the final syllable of the base is analysed as part of the 語尾 gobi “ending”. Hence a verb such as 食べる tabe-ru is segmented as (語幹 gokan “stem”) ta- + (語尾 gobi “ending”) -beru, with the -beru becoming -be, -be, -beru, -beru, -bere, -bero/-beyo for the six katsuyōkei forms. (Verbs with a one-syllable base such as 出る deru conjugates in the same way as endings.) A verb whose base ends in -Ce is said to conjugate according to Ca行下一段活用 Ca-gyō shimo ichidan katsuyō lower monograde conjugation on the Ca column” because the endings begin with the kana Ce, which is on the Ca column and e row (lower row). For example, 食べる taberu has バ行下一段活用 ba-gyō shimo ichidan katsuyō lower monograde conjugation on the ba column”.

k-irregular (カ行変格 ka-gyō henkaku)[edit]

This class has only one verb, 来る kuru “to come”.

Dictionary form 未然形
mizenkei
連用形
ren'yōkei
終止形
shūshikei
連体形
rentaikei
仮定形
kateikei
命令形
meireikei
kuru
来る
ko-
ki
kuru
くる
kuru
くる
kure-
くれ
koi
こい

s-irregular (サ行変格 sa-gyō henkaku)[edit]

This class has only one verb, する suru “to do”, which conjugates as follows:[1]

Verb and context 未然形 mizenkei1 連用形 ren'yōkei 終止形 shūshikei 連体形 rentaikei 仮定形 kateikei 命令形 meireikei2
passive
~(ら)れる
causative
~(さ)せる
negative
~ない
volitional
~(よ)う
する suru, noun + する suru sareru
れる
saseru
せる
shinai
ない
shi
よう
shi
suru
する
suru
する
sure
すれ
seyo, shiro
せよ, しろ
single kanji ending in /Q/ + する suru
e.g. 達する tassuru
serareru, shirareru
られる, られる
shisaseru
させる
shinai
ない
shi
よう
shi
suru
する
suru
する
sure
すれ
seyo, shiro
せよ, しろ
single kanji ending in /n/ or /ŋ/ + ずる zuru
e.g. 論ずる ronzuru
jirareru, zerareru
られる, られる
jisaseru
させる
jinai
ない
ji
よう
ji
zuru, jiru
ずる, じる
zuru, jiru
ずる, じる
zure, jire
ずれ, じれ
zeyo, jiro
ぜよ, じろ
single kanji ending in i or ku + する suru
e.g. 愛する aisuru
sareru
れる
saseru
せる
sanai, shinai
ない, ない
shi,
よう,
shi
suru, su
する,
suru, su
する,
sure, se
すれ,
seyo, shiro, se
せよ, しろ,
Notes
  1. When used with older auxiliaries such as the negative ぬ -nu, the older mizenkei, se- (ze- for zuru) is used.
  2. -ro is the spoken imperative and -yo is the written imperative.

Inflected forms[edit]

In traditional Japanese grammar, verbs have the six basic forms called 活用形 katsuyōkei listed below, from which most of their inflected forms can be derived.

活用形 katsuyōkei Stem? Inflected form?
未然形 (mizenkei, irrealis) Yes No
連用形 (ren'yōkei, continuative or stem form) Yes Yes
終止形 (shūshikei, conclusive) No Yes
連体形 (rentaikei, adnominal) No Yes
仮定形 (kateikei, hypothetical) Yes No
命令形 (meireikei, imperative) No Yes

Notes: 未然形 mizenkei “irrealis” is named after its use with -ba in Classical Japanese: kakaba “if one writes”, in contrast with the realis kakeba “as, when, because one writes”. It is a stem used to form the negative, passive, causative, and the volitional. 連用形 ren'yōkei is named in reference to its use followed by 用言 yōgen “inflecting words”. It is the infinitive as an inflected form, and also a stem used to form some inflected forms as well as compound verbs. 終止形 shūshikei is the conclusive, and is also the “plain” or “dictionary form” in which verbs are generally cited. 連体形 rentaikei is named in reference to its use followed by 体言 taigen “non-inflecting words”. It is the adnominal, also used to conclude a clause modifying a noun. In modern Japanese the shūshikei has the same shape as the rentaikei, but in Classical Japanese it usually does not. 仮定形 kateikei “hypothetical” is a stem only used with -ba to form the provisional conditional. 命令形 meireikei is the imperative.

Basic inflected forms[edit]

Here are the first set of inflected forms commonly taught in textbooks.

Plain forms
Form Conjugation kaku 書く (base kak-) miru 見る (base mi-)
Nonpast shūshikei / rentaikei kaku
かく
miru
みる
Past ren'yōkei + -ta
(with sound changes for five-grade verbs)
kaita
かいた
mita
みた
Negative nonpast mizenkei + -nai kakanai
かかない
minai
みない
Negative past mizenkei + -nakatta kakanakatta
かかなかった
minakatta
みなかった
Polite forms
Form Conjugation kaku 書く (base kak-) miru 見る (base mi-)
Nonpast ren'yōkei + -masu kakimasu
かきます
mimasu
みます
Past ren'yōkei + -mashita kakimashita
かきました
mimashita
みました
Negative nonpast ren'yōkei + -masen kakimasen
かきません
mimasen
みません
Negative past ren'yōkei + -masen deshita kakimasen deshita
かきませんでした
kakimasen deshita
みませんでした

Note: The verb aru ある “to be, to exist” does not have the negative formed in this way. The plain negative is the adjective nai ない “nonexistent, not be”, and the polite negative is nai desu ないです or arimasen ありません.

All these forms can occur in the predicate position of a sentence (i.e. at the end).

アリス (まい) (にち)コーヒー ()/ ()みますArisu wa mainichi kōhī o nomu / nomimasu.Alice drinks coffee every day.
アリス (でん) () (ばん) (ごう) ()らない/ ()りませんArisu no denwabangō o shiranai / shirimasen.I don't know Alice's telephone number.
 () (のう) (とも) (だち) (いえ) ()/ ()ましたKinō, tomodachi ga ie ni kita / kimashita.Friends came to my house yesterday.
 (せん) (しゅう) (はたら)かなかった/ (はたら)きませんでしたか。Senshū hatarakanakatta / hatarakimasen deshita ka.You didn't work in the last week?

The plain forms can also be used to modify a noun, or in the predicate position of a clause modifying a noun, when occurring before it:

 (わたし)明日 (あした) () () (こう) ()watashi ga ashita noru hikōkithe plane that I'll take tomorrow (lit. the-tomorrow-taken-by-me plane.)
 () (ども)いない (ふう) ()kodomo no inai fūfua couple who have no child (lit. the children-lacking couple.)
トムが () (のう) ()ったパソコンtomu ga kinō katta pasokonthe computer that Tom bought yesterday (lit. the yesterday-bought-by-Tom computer.)
トップ10 (10) (はい)らなかった (こと) ()toppu 10 ni hairanakatta kotobawords that didn't enter the top 10 (lit. the non-entered-to-top-10 words.)

Infinitive[edit]

The infinitive (= ren'yōkei), apart from deriving nouns or used in the construction of compound verbs, can be used for the non-final predicates when linking several predicates together in a sentence.

 (きみ) (うた) (ぼく) (おど)kimi ga utai, boku wa odoruyou sing; I dance

This is called 連用中止 ren'yō chūshi and it is mainly used in written language. The non-final predicates do not conjugate for tense or politeness. Iru いる “to be” in these positions are usually replaced by its humble form oru おる and put in ren'yōkei as ori おり.

Another use of the infinitive is in the grammar pattern verb/clause + ni + motion verb.

 (あそ) ()たぜ。Asobi ni kita ze.I came to play
 () () () (もつ) () ()きます。Gogo, nimotsu o tori ni ikimasu.I will go to fetch my luggage this afternoon.

Certain kinds of compound verbs are produced by attaching a word to the continuative form of a verb; for example: やすい (-yasui, easy to do), (-kata, way of doing something), 返す (-kaesu, to do something over again). Other constructions include たい (-tai, to want to do something), ながら (-nagara, while doing something), なさい (-nasai, please do something) (used only between friends or to someone of a lower rank), そう (-sō da, to seem likely to do something).

Conjunctive form with て[edit]

The conjunctive or te form is spinoff of the continuative form by attaching the particle to it. For godan (five-grade) verbs, the same kinds of sound changes with ~た applies. The particle can be used to link several predicates together, as illustrated below:

アリスは (まい)晩家 (ばんいえ) (かえ)って、テレビを ()ますArisu wa maiban ie e kaette, terebi o mimasu.Alice returns home and watches TV every night.
 () (のう) () (しょ) (かん) ()って (べん) (きょう)しましたKinō toshokan e itte, benkyō shimashita.I went to library and studied yesterday.

When used at the end of a sentence it makes a light command:

 (たす)けてTasukete!Help!
ゆっくりしていってね!Yukkuri shite itte ne!Take it easy!

More often, this form is part of certain kinds of expressions: ~てから (after doing something), ~て(いい) (it's OK to do something), ~てだめ/いけない/ならない (it's not ok to do something), ~て下さい (please do something), ~ている (to be doing something), ~てある (to be in the state of ...), ~てばかり (to be always doing something), ~てあげる (to do something to others), ~てくれる (to do something for me), ~てもらう (to receive the favor of doing something), ~ておく (to do something in preparation), ~てしまう (to do something completely or accidentally), ~てみる (to try doing something), etc. When followed by motion verbs like いく and くる as a set expression, the basic meaning is to do something towards a direction (e.g. 帰る is "return", 帰っていく is "go back", while 帰ってくる is "come back"), and the notion of the direction can be abstract (towards the future, up to the present, come to the state, etc.)

Imperative form[edit]

The imperative form (命令形) is often irregular in honorific speech; in other cases it can be rude in everyday conversation except when quoted or used in -clauses. It is conjugated:

  • godan verbs: change the -u to -e. For example, 読む becomes 読め.
  • ichidan verbs: change the -ru to -ro. For example, 見る becomes 見ろ.
  • irregular verbs: kuru becomes koi, suru becomes shiro.

Volitional form[edit]

The volitional form carries the meaning of "let's do something". It has the same meaning when used alone and means "try to do" when followed by する. It also means "I want to do something", but a less direct way to say this is to follow it by 思う. The conjugation is:

  • godan verbs: change the -u to . For example, 読む becomes 読もう.
  • ichidan verbs: change the -ru to -yō. For example, 見る becomes 見よう.
  • irregular verbs: kuru becomes koyō, suru becomes shiyō.

Hypothetical conditional form[edit]

One of way to say "if" is to attach to the 仮定形 of a verb, which is formed by changing the final vowel u (whether in -u, -ru, kuru, suru) to an e. "AばB" implies that A is a condition for B to happen.

Potential form[edit]

  • godan verbs: change the -u to -eru. For example, 読む becomes 読める.
  • ichidan verbs: change the -ru to -rareru. For example, 見る becomes 見られる.
  • irregular verbs: kuru becomes korareru, suru becomes dekiru.

Sometimes the ra can be left out (a practice called ら抜き言葉). The result can be further conjugated like an ichidan verb; for example, 信じられない (unbelievable).

Causative form[edit]

  • godan verbs: change the -u to -a (but -wa if it has no consonant) and attach seru. For example, 読む becomes 読ませる.
  • ichidan verbs: change the -ru to -saseru. For example, 見る becomes 見させる.
  • irregular verbs: kuru becomes kosaseru, suru becomes saseru.

The result can be further conjugated like an ichidan verb. Sometimes the せる is abbreviated as a single す and conjugates as godan verbs. The object is usually introduced with , but when there is another object with (such as "A made B sing a song"), is used instead.

Passive form[edit]

  • godan verbs: change the -u to -a (but -wa if it has no consonant) and attach reru. For example, 読む becomes 読まれる.
  • ichidan verbs: change the -ru to -rareru. For example, 見る becomes 見られる.
  • irregular verbs: kuru becomes korareru, suru becomes sareru.

The result can be further conjugated like an ichidan verb. Aside from the passive voice (where the performer of the verb is introduced with or によって), the form is also used to show politeness in which case the sentence structure does not change. In casual speech, the せる can be abbreviated as a single す and conjugates as godan verbs. The passive form is sometimes used for a victimhood state, for example, 逃げられた is not "was run away by the rabbit", but "rabbit ran away, resulting in loss".

Irregular conjugation related to polite speech[edit]

  • The imperative form of くれる is くれ.
  • The imperative form of some godan verbs have the ru replaced with i:
Verb Imperative form
くださる ください
なさる なさい
いらっしゃる いらっしゃい
おっしゃる おっしゃい
はがきを5枚 (ごまい)ください
Hagaki o gomai kudasai.
Please give me five postcards.

The i-ending imperative forms may be followed by mase:

いらっしゃいませ
Irasshaimase!
Welcome!

Transitivity[edit]

Japanese verbs often come in transitive and intransitive pairs, called 他動詞 (tadōshi) and 自動詞 (jidōshi) in Japanese respectively. Intransitive verbs usually take only a subject marked with (ga) or (wa), while transitive verbs can also take an object marked with (o).

 (せん) (せい) (じゅ) (ぎょう) (はじ)める。sensei ga jugyō o hajimeru.The teacher starts the class.
 (じゅ) (ぎょう) (はじ)まる。jugyō ga hajimaru.The class starts.

A motion verb can also be used with (o) even though it is intransitive in Japanese.

 (はし) (わた)hashi o wataruto cross the bridge

When the transitive verb used with たい (tai) to express desire, or in the potential form, the object is usually marked with (ga), but (o) is also OK.

 (みず) ()みたい。mizu ga nomitai.I want to drink water.

Passive forms (ら)れる (-(ra)reru) usually become intransitive and causative forms (さ)せる (-(sa)seru) usually become transitive. てある (-tearu) forms usually become intransitive.

 (まど) ()けてある。mado ga akete aru.The window is opened.

Stem forms[edit]

These are the basic forms of verbs as taught in Japan. Verbs have six associated stem forms; three of these each appear in two different ways that are not given separate names, but are used in disjoint contexts. The izenkei (已然形, classical perfective form) is also called the kateikei (仮定形, hypothetical form in modern Japanese). The shūshikei (終止形, terminal form) and rentaikei (連体形, attributive form) are identical for verbs in modern Japanese.

Prototype 起きる 食べる 書く 行く 剥ぐ 射す 待つ 死ぬ 呼ぶ 飲む 掘る 買う 問う くる する
okiru taberu kaku iku hagu sasu matsu shinu yobu nomu horu kau tou kuru suru
Class 上一 下一 カ五 カ五 ガ五 サ五 タ五 ナ五 バ五 マ五 ラ五 ワ五 ワ五 変格 変格
kami-1 shimo-1 ka-5 ka-5 ga-5 sa-5 ta-5 na-5 ba-5 ma-5 ra-5 wa-5 wa-5 ka-hen. sa-hen.
Stem 起き 食べ irreg. irreg.
oki- tabe- kak- ik- hag- sas- mat- shin- yob- nom- hor- ka(*p)- to(*p)- irreg. irreg.
Mizenkei (未然形) 起き 食べ 書か 行か 剥が 射さ 待た 死な 呼ば 飲ま 掘ら 買わ 問わ irreg.
Imperfective (general) oki- tabe- kaka- ika- haga- sasa- mata- shina- yoba- noma- hora- kawa- towa- ko- irreg.
Mizenkei (未然形) 起き 食べ 書こ 行こ 剥ご 射そ 待と 死の 呼ぼ 飲も 掘ろ 買お 問お
Imperfective (volitional) oki- tabe- kako- iko- hago- saso- mato- shino- yobo- nomo- horo- kao- too- ko- shi-
Ren'yōkei (連用形) 起き 食べ 書き 行き 剥ぎ 射し 待ち 死に 呼び 飲み 掘り 買い 問い
Continuative (-i) oki tabe kaki iki hagi sashi machi shini yobi nomi hori kai toi ki shi
Ren'yōkei (連用形) 起き 食べ 書い 行っ 剥い 射し 待っ 死ん 呼ん 飲ん 掘っ 買っ 問う
Continuative (other) oki- tabe- kai- i_- hai- sashi- ma_- shin- yon- non- ho_- ka_- tou- ki- shi-
Shūshikei (終止形) 起きる 食べる 書く 行く 剥ぐ 射す 待つ 死ぬ 呼ぶ 飲む 掘る 買う 問う くる する
Terminal okiru taberu kaku iku hagu sasu matsu shinu yobu nomu horu kau tou kuru suru
Rentaikei (連体形) 起きる 食べる 書く 行く 剥ぐ 射す 待つ 死ぬ 呼ぶ 飲む 掘る 買う 問う くる する
Attributive okiru taberu kaku iku hagu sasu matsu shinu yobu nomu horu kau tou kuru suru
Izenkei (已然形) 起きれ 食べれ 書け 行け 剥げ 射せ 待て 死ね 呼べ 飲め 掘れ 買え 問え くれ すれ
Classical Perfective okire- tabere- kake- ike- hage- sase- mate- shine- yobe- nome- hore- kae- toe- kure- sure-
Meireikei (命令形) 起きよ 食べよ 書け 行け 剥げ 射せ 待て 死ね 呼べ 飲め 掘れ 買え 問え こい せよ
Imperative (written) okiyo tabeyo kake ike hage sase mate shine yobe nome hore kae toe koi seyo
Meireikei (命令形) 起きろ 食べろ 書け 行け 剥げ 射せ 待て 死ね 呼べ 飲め 掘れ 買え 問え こい しろ
Imperative (spoken) okiro tabero kake ike hage sase mate shine yobe nome hore kae toe koi shiro

The ren'yōkei (連用形, -i form), shūshikei (終止形, terminal form), rentaikei (連体形, attributive form), and meireikei (命令形, imperative form) can appear on their own. The other inflections require suffixes.

Complex forms[edit]

Form Classes Stem Suffix Result is Examples
Passive 受動態 1, kuru imperfective (general) られる shimo-1 verb 食べられる
5 imperfective (general) れる shimo-1 verb 書かれる
suru irreg. irreg. shimo-1 verb される
Causative 使役態 1, kuru imperfective (general) させる or さす shimo-1 verb 食べさせる
5 imperfective (general) せる or shimo-1 verb 書かせる
suru irreg. irreg. shimo-1 verb させる or さす
Potential 可能法 1 imperfective (general) られる shimo-1 verb 食べられる
5, kuru, 1 (colloq.) classical imperfective shimo-1 verb 書ける, 起きれる
suru defective defective 出来る (せる in compounds)

Other forms[edit]

Form Classes Stem Suffix Result is Examples
Volitional 1, kuru, suru imperfective (volitional) よう indeclinable 食べよう, こよう, しよう
5 imperfective (volitional) indeclinable 書こう, 話そう
Negative all imperfective (general) ない i-adjective 食べない, 書かない, こない, しない
Negative (archaic) all imperfective (general) indeclinable 食べぬ, 書かぬ
Negative Continuative (-zu) 1, 5, kuru imperfective (general) indeclinable 食べず, 書かず, こず
suru irreg. irreg. indeclinable せず
Negative Conjunctive (-naide) all imperfective (general) ないで indeclinable 起きないで, 書かないで, こないで, しないで
Past tense 1, kuru, suru, (ka,sa,ta,ra,wa)-5 continuative (other) indeclinable 食べた, きた, した, 書いた, 行った, 話した, 待った, 作った, 払った, 問った
(ga,na,ba,ma)-5 continuative (other) indeclinable 泳いだ, 死んだ, 読んだ, 飲んだ
Conjunctive (-te) 1, kuru, suru, (ka,sa,ta,ra,wa)-5 continuative (other) indeclinable 食べて, きて, して, 書いて, 行って, 話して, 待って, 作って, 払って, 問って
(ga,na,ba,ma)-5 continuative (other) indeclinable 泳いで, 死んで, 読んで, 飲んで
Hypothetical (-ba) all classical imperfective (hypothetical) indeclinable 起きれば, 書けば, くれば, すれば
Conditional (-tara) 1, kuru, suru, (ka,sa,ta,ra,wa)-5 continuative (other) たら indeclinable 食べたら, きたら, したら, 書いたら
(ga,na,ba,ma)-5 continuative (other) だら indeclinable 泳いだら, 死んだら, 読んだら, 飲んだら
Currently incomplete

Suffixes to the continuative (-i) form[edit]

There are several suffixes that attach to the continuative (-i) form. These are some of the most common:

Form Suffix Result is Examples
Formal (-masu) ます irregular verb 行きます
Desire (-tai) たい i-adjective 食べたい

Classical Japanese[edit]

The following table shows the conjugations of classical verbs as well as the modern equivalents in historical kana orthography. Note the “school grammar” terminology and notion of verb forms. A conjugation table for auxiliary verbs appears at Appendix:Japanese auxiliary verbs (todo).

動詞活用表[2]
文語 (classical) 口語 (modern)
種類
conjugation
class

consonant
of suffix
語例
example
word
未然
irrealis
連用
cont.
終止
terminal
連體
attrib.
已然
realis
命令
imperat.
種類
conjugation
class

consonant
of suffix
語例
example
word
未然
irrealis
連用
cont.
終止
terminal
連體
attrib.
假定
hypot.
命令
imperat.
四段
yodan
four-grade
-k- 行(ゆ)く yu.ku ka ki ku ku ke ke 四段
yodan
four-grade
-k- 行(ゆ)く yu.ku ka ki ku ku ke ke
-g- 漕(こ)ぐ ko.gu ga gi gu gu ge ge -g- 漕(こ)ぐ ko.gu ga gi gu gu ge ge
-s- 增(ま)す ma.su sa si su su se se -s- 增(ま)す ma.su sa si su su se se
-t- 打(う)つ u.tu ta ti tu tu te te -t- 打(う)つ u.tu ta ti tu tu te te
-h- 思(おも)ふ omo.hu ha hi hu hu he he -h- 思(おも)ふ omo.hu ha hi hu hu he he
-b- 飛(と)ぶ to.bu ba bi bu bu be be -b- 飛(と)ぶ to.bu ba bi bu bu be be
-m- 讀(よ)む yo.mu ma mi mu mu me me -m- 讀(よ)む yo.mu ma mi mu mu me me
-r- 取(と)る to.ru ra ri ru ru re re -r- 取(と)る to.ru ra ri ru ru re re
ラ變
ra-hen
r- irregular
-r- 有(あ)り a.ri ra ri ri ru re re -r- 有(あ)る a.ru ra ri ru ru re re
ナ變
na-hen
n- irregular
-n- 死(し)ぬ si.nu na ni nu nuru nure ne -n- 死(し)ぬ si.nu na ni nu nu ne ne
下一段
shimo-ichidan
lower-monograde
-k- 蹴(け)る keru ke ke keru keru kere keyo -r- 蹴(け)る ke.ru ra ri ru ru re re
下二段
shimo-nidan
lower-bigrade
(a) 得(う) u e e u uru ure eyo 下一段
shimo-ichidan
lower-monograde
(a) 得(え)る eru e e eru eru ere eyo
-k- 受(う)く u.ku ke ke ku kuru kure keyo -k- 受(う)ける u.keru ke ke keru keru kere keyo
-g- 上(あ)ぐ a.gu ge ge gu guru gure geyo -g- 上(あ)げる a.geru ge ge geru geru gere geyo
-s- 寄(よ)す yo.su se se su suru sure seyo -s- 寄(よ)せる yo.seru se se seru seru sure seyo
-z- 交(ま)ず ma.zu ze ze zu zuru zure zeyo -z- 交(ま)ぜる ma.zeru ze ze zeru zeru zere zeyo
-t- 捨(す)つ su.tu te te tu turu ture teyo -t- 捨(す)てる su.teru te te teru teru tere teyo
-d- 出(い)づ i.du de de du duru dure deyo -d- 出(で)る deru de de deru deru dere deyo
-n- 尋(たづ)ぬ tadu.nu ne ne nu nuru nure neyo -n- 尋(たづ)ねる tadu.neru ne ne neru neru nere neyo
-h- 考(かんが)ふ kanga.hu he he hu huru hure heyo -h- 考(かんが)へる kanga.heru he he heru heru here heyo
-b- 調(しら)ぶ sira.bu be be bu buru bure beyo -b- 調(しら)べる sira.beru be be beru beru bere beyo
-m- 止(と)む to.mu me me mu muru mure meyo -m- 止(と)める to.meru me me meru meru mere meyo
-y- 越(こ)ゆ ko.yu e e yu yuru yure eyo -y- 越(こ)える ko.eru e e eru eru ere eyo
-r- 晴(は)る ha.ru re re ru ruru rure reyo -r- 晴(は)れる ha.reru re re reru reru rere reyo
-w- 植(う)う u.u we we u uru ure weyo -w- 植(う)ゑる u.weru we we weru weru were weyo
上一段
kami-ichidan
upper-monograde
-k- 著(き)る kiru ki ki kiru kiru kire kiyo 上一段
kami-ichidan
upper-monograde
-k- 著(き)る kiru ki ki kiru kiru kire kiyo
-n- 似(に)る niru ni ni niru niru nire niyo -n- 似(に)る niru ni ni niru niru nire niyo
-h- 干(ひ)る hiru hi hi hiru hiru hire hiyo -h- 干(ひ)る hiru hi hi hiru hiru hire hiyo
-m- 見(み)る miru mi mi miru miru mire miyo -m- 見(み)る miru mi mi miru miru mire miyo
-y- 老(お)いる o.iru i i iru iru ire iyo -y- 老(お)いる o.iru i i iru iru ire iyo
-w- 居(ゐ)る wiru wi wi wiru wiru wire wiyo -w- 居(ゐ)る wiru wi wi wiru wiru wire wiyo
上二段
kami-nidan
upper-bigrade
-k- 起(お)く o.ku ki ki ku kuru kure kiyo -k- 起(お)きる o.kiru ki ki kiru kiru kire kiyo
-g- 過(す)ぐ su.gu gi gi gu guru gure giyo -g- 過(す)ぎる su.giru gi gi giru giru gire giyo
-t- 落(お)つ o.tu ti ti tu turu ture tiyo -t- 落(お)ちる o.tiru ti ti tiru tiru tire tiyo
-d- 恥(は)づ ha.du di di du duru dure diyo -d- 恥(は)ぢる ha.diru di di ziru ziru zire diyo
-h- 強(し)ふ si.hu hi hi hu huru hure hiyo -h- 強(し)ひる si.hiru hi hi hiru hiru hire hiyo
-b- 亡(ほろ)ぶ horo.bu bi bi bu buru bure biyo -b- 亡(ほろ)びる horo.biru bi bi biru biru bire biyo
-m- 恨(うら)む ura.mu mi mi mu muru mure miyo -m- 恨(うら)みる ura.miru mi mi miru miru mire miyo
-y- 悔(く)ゆ ku.yu i i yu yuru yure iyo -y- 悔(く)いる ku.iru i i iru iru ire iyo
-r- 懲(こ)る ko.ru ri ri ru ruru rure riyo -r- 懲(こ)りる ko.riru ri ri riru riru rire riyo
カ變
ka-hen
k- irregular
-k- 來(く) ku ko ki ku kuru kure koyo カ變
ka-hen
k- irregular
-k- 來(く)る kuru ko ki kuru kuru kure koi
サ變
sa-hen
s- irregular
-s- 爲(す) su se si su suru sure seyo サ變
sa-hen
s- irregular
-s- 爲(す)る suru se
si
si suru suru sure seyo
siro
講(かう)ず kau.zu ze zi zu zuru zure zeyo 講(かう)ずる kau.zuru ze
zi
zi zuru zuru zure zeyo
ziro
The rōmaji are Nihon-shiki transliterations of the kana and do not necessarily reflect the actual sounds.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Table adapted from 1998, 広辞苑 (Kōjien), Fifth Edition (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Iwanami Shoten, →ISBN
  2. ^ Adapted from the Daijiten (大辭典, page 131, volume 26) published in 1936 by Heibonsha (平凡社), which was believed to be out of copyright.