akaku wa arimasen


New Member
English, USA
Okay so I'm still doing a self-study course, and totaly hit a new level of confusion. Here I think they are asking what color something is and responding if they are right or not?

starts at the basic:

kuruma wa aoi desu ka. hai, aoi desu.
kuruma wa shiroi desu ka. iie, aoi desu.

That I understood, but heres where I get lost-

kuruma wa akai desu ka. iie, sono kuruma wa akaku wa arimasen. sono kuruma wa kiiroi desu.
kuruma wa aoi desu ka. iie, aoku wa arimasen. kiiroi desu.

Am I correct when guessing they got aoku and akaku by dropping the i on akai and aoi and adding ku to it? And also what do the extra words added mean/do?

Also later on they are giving me this statement, which I have barely any clue what it says/means:
kono ie no ue ni otokonohito ga imasu ka. iie, imasen.

  • The one thing you have to realise is that in Japanese, adjectives, even colours, have a negative form. You don't say "It's not red", you say "It's rednot". What you see there is simply the negative form of "red".

    The last sentence is hard to say without the kanji, but I'd guess "Above this apartment, is there (living) a man? No, is not." (very literal translation for better understanding)
    kono ie no ue ni otokonohito ga imasu ka. iie, imasen.

    Can Mean:

    Is there a man on the top of that house?, No, there is not.
    Is there any man on the second floor? no, there is not
    Ue: means above, up, on the top of, on, the second floor?.. according to the each case.
    The secret to Japanese (well, one of many) is that it has no real adjectives.

    Aoi and shiroi are descriptive verbs. They conjugate for past and negative like other verbs do.

    akai = is red
    akakunai = is not red

    And of course, they're making you use the politer form where nai becomes arimasen.
    I just had this explained to me... If you insert the は, the sentence focuses on the fact that the colour is not red. Example:

    I like the colour red a lot and I'm thinking about buying this car...

    Even though this car is not red, I like it.

    This car is not red and I like it. (slightly weird)

    Or, when buying a suitcase (the example my friend used):
    This one is not too heavy (the weight is right!), but it's too big.

    Please correct me if I'm wrong.
    Using the adverb in a way resembling western languages nouns is common in japanese. Maybe it's easier to understand this kind of constructions by thinking of it as some kind of nominalization like warui -> warusa

    - そんなにたくさん食べない方がいいよ
    (sonna ni takusan tabenai hou ga ii yo - maybe you shouldn't eat that much)
    - おいしい物を食べては悪くはないよ
    (oisii mono wo tabete wa waruku wa nai yo - there's nothing wrong in eating tasty things)

    kuruma wa aoi desu ka. iie, aoku wa arimasen. kiiroi desu.
    - Is the car blue?
    - No, there's no blue (in it). It's yellow.
    Some recapitulation seems necessary as there have been more than one point advanced concerning the negative forms of adjectives.

    First, when used predicatively, Japanese adjectives (let us call them thus, however tentatively) can assume two different negative forms.

    The plain negative form is -ku (wa) nai.
    kono kuruma-wa takaku(-wa) nai.

    The polite negative form is -ku (wa) arimasen.
    kono kuruma-wa takaku(-wa) arimasen.

    Both sentences mean, "This car is not expensive." The optional -wa particle is used to provide focus on the adjective.

    When a sentence is joined to another with conjunctions (such as and, but), some caution is necessary.

    In order to describe a pair of similar things, adjectives should assume -ku or -ishi ending.

    Group I
    Positive plain forms are;
    姉は美し、妹はかわいい。 ane-wa utsukushiku, imōto-wa kawaii.
    姉は美しいし、妹はかわいい。 ane-wa utsukushiishi, imōto-wa kawaii.
    The elder sister is beautiful and the younger sister is lovely.

    Positive polite forms are;
    姉は美し、妹はかわいいです。 ane-wa utsukushiku, imōto-wa kawaii desu.
    姉は美しいですし、妹はかわいいです。 ane-wa utsukushiidesushi, imōto-wa kawaii desu.

    Please note that -ku cannot be followed by -desu, the politeness marker. The semantic difference between utsukushiku and utsukushiishi is that the former introduces a more-or-less objective parallelism but the latter emphasises the parallelism with an "as you might expect" attitude.

    When the parallel is drawn between negated adjectives, the negative marker -nai assumes -ku or -ishi ending. The ending -ku being unable to be followed by -desu applies here too.

    Negative forms are (the first two are plain forms, and the rest are polite forms);

    Group II
    姉は美しくな、妹はかわいくない。 ane-wa utsukushikunaku, imōto-wa kawaikunai.
    姉は美しくないし、妹はかわいくない。 ane-wa utsukushikunaishi, imōto-wa kawaikunai.
    姉は美しくなく、妹はかわいくないです。 ane-wa utsukushikunaku, imōto-wa kawaikunai desu.
    姉は美しくないですし、妹はかわいくないです。 ane-wa utsukushikunaidesushi, imōto-wa kawaikunai desu.
    The elder sister is not beautiful and the younger sister is not lovely.

    When a contrast betwee to things are described, particles -ga and -noni are applicable.

    When the first clause contains an adjective in positive plain and polite forms;

    Group III
    姉は美しい、妹は醜い。 ane-wa utsukushii-ga, imōto-wa minikui.
    姉は美しいのに、妹は醜い。 ane-wa utsukushii-noni, imōto-wa minikui.
    姉は美しいですが、妹は醜いです。 ane-wa utsukushii-desuga, imōto-wa minikui desu.
    *姉は美しいですのに、______ 。 *ane-wa utsukushi-desunoni, . . . . .
    The elder sister is beautiful but the younger sister is ugly.

    The difference between -ga and -noni is similar to that between simple "but" and "although." The former is a more-or-less objective contrastive remark, whereas the latter is meant to emphasise the difference between the compared themes. Also note-worthy here is that -noni cannot be preceded by -desu.

    The last group is contrastive remarks whose first clause contains an adjective in negative form. As with the group II, the negation adjective -nai takes the contrastive particles and the same rule applies as the group III;

    Group IV

    姉は美しくない、妹はかわいい。 ane-wa utsukushikunai-ga, imōto-wa kawaii.
    姉は美しくないのに、妹はかわいい。 ane-wa utsukushikunai-noni, imōto-wa kawaii.
    姉は美しくないですが、妹はかわいいです。 ane-wa utsukushikunai-desuga, imōto-wa kawaii desu.
    *姉は美しくないですのに、______ 。 *ane-wa utsukushikunai-desunoni, . . . . .
    The elder sister is not beautiful but the younger sister is lovely.

    That は seems very strange to me!

    The first sentence would probably be better put:

    No, 「 この車はあかくありませんけど、好きです。」 is grammatical. Conjunction -noni seems to have a special property worthy of a separate discussion. I have moved your original post to a new thread.

    Flaminius, moderētā
    Some recapitulation seems necessary as there have been more than one point advanced concerning the negative forms of adjectives.
    I have never attempted to write Japanese, only read it. This is so easy to read, so easy to understand passively, so impossible to DO. :(

    Were you asking us to complete two sentences?
    Group III
    *姉は美しいですのに、______ 。
    The elder sister is beautiful although the younger sister is ugly.
    Group IV

    *姉は美しくないですのに、______ 。
    The elder sister is not beautiful although the younger sister is lovely.

    One other question. 可愛い、かわいい、I have seen both. Do you dislike the kanji form?

    Many thanks for the complete and excellent explanation!