I will swim to Japan

maybe4ever

Senior Member
US english
I was studying a few Japanese particles yesterday and the way I like to learn is by making up funny hypothetical situations.

So if I was wanting to say I will swim to Japan, in Japanese, would I say this:

Nihon ni oyogu.

For instance, say I was in Hawaii and decided I was going to swim to Japan, I would say that, correct?

If I were to say, "Nihon e oyogu", this would mean, I will swim towards Japan [though I may end up in thailand instead], correct? :)


Also, If I said, "Nihon de oyogu", this would mean sometihing like, I will swim in Japan, correct?


I'm wondering if I've learned these particles correctly or not, though. So any help would be appreciated.
 
  • I_like_my_TV

    Senior Member
    Tongan
    I'm wondering if I've learned these particles correctly or not, though.
    As far as the particles are concerned, you've done well. However, "Nihon ni oyogu" and "Nihon e oyogu" are not natural Japanese. You have to say something like "going somethere by way of swimming", thus: "Nihon ni oyoide iku" and "Nihon e oyoide iku" (oyoide is the te-form of oyogu)
     

    cheshire

    Senior Member
    Catholic (Cat-holic, not Catholic)
    Or 「日本へ向けて泳ぐ」「日本の方角に泳ぐ」「日本に向かって泳ぐ」「日本を目指して泳ぐ」.

    It's difficult to explain, but you can't somehow use 「に」 nor 「へ」 with most of the verbs.

    You know, verbs such as 行く、来る、派遣する、送る、紹介する、導入する、輸入する、輸出する、伝播する、留学する、通う can accompany either of those particles, but SOMEHOW we can't with other verbs. I'm trying to find the reason, and hope other forer@ will help me with this endeaver.
     

    Flaminius

    coclea mod
    日本語 / japāniski / יפנית
    Probably just an idea but I think the goal marker (-ni in Japanese) can be used only with motion verbs. By motion verbs, I mean intransitive verbs to express movement of the subject from a start to a goal. cheshire has listed some (or "most", I believe motion verbs are limited) of them in Japanese (I marked them in blue).

    行く、来る、派遣する、送る、紹介する、導入する、輸入する、輸出する、伝播する、留学する、通う
    I have never thought of this difference between Japanese and English, but oyogu is not a motion verb. A replacement by I_like_my_TV uses iku as the main verb, which okays -ni, and oyoide as an adverbial element that indicates the method of the movement.
     

    cheshire

    Senior Member
    Catholic (Cat-holic, not Catholic)
    Excellent explanation as always, Flaminius.
    I agree those verbs are all motion verbs, but in my opinion, they are all motion verbs, blue and green ones.
    To be precise, the green ones can work as motion verbs, and sometimes they don't require either place (starting point or goal point). For example, in the sentence 新ウィンドウズを導入した, you don't have to add the place the Windows was introduced FROM, nor the place the Windows was introduced TO. It's completely optional. You can say also, 新ウィンドウズをアメリカから導入した、新ウィンドウズをオフィスに導入した。新ウィンドウズをアメリカから日本のオフィスに導入した。Same thing can be true for the blue verbs.
     

    I_like_my_TV

    Senior Member
    Tongan
    Although we agree that the verb "oyogu" doesn't work in "Nihon ni oyogu" and "Nihon e oyogu", what I find interesting is, by some slight modifications, such structures would become more acceptable:

    ここに泳いで見て!
    そこへ泳いで見て!

    How do you explain this? Could it be that "oyogu" is not a motion verb when long distances are concerned but can be regarded as a motion verb within limited distances or confined locations?
     

    cheshire

    Senior Member
    Catholic (Cat-holic, not Catholic)
    Although we agree that the verb "oyogu" doesn't work in "Nihon ni oyogu" and "Nihon e oyogu", what I find interesting is, by some slight modifications, such structures would become more acceptable:

    ここに泳いで見て!
    そこへ泳いで見て!

    How do you explain this? Could it be that "oyogu" is not a motion verb when long distances are concerned but can be regarded as a motion verb within limited distances or confined locations?
    :cross: ここに泳いで見て!
    :cross: そこへ泳いで見て!
    :tick: ここまで泳いでて!

    1. This 「みる」 ("to try," "一下"in Chinese) is different from 見る ("to see"). Etymologically, the former must have come from the latter, but they are no longer considered the same words. For this, refer to the Wikipedia article of 文法化 "glamaticalization." There is a rule: grammaticalized words must not be written in kanji. This is not completely obeyed, though. You find the rule broken from time to time.

    2. As みる in this case is not a regular verb but an auxiliary verb, you should look at the main verb 泳ぐ. It's not a motion verb. Thus we can't use に or で there.
     

    maybe4ever

    Senior Member
    US english
    Thank you everyone, for helping to clear this up.

    It is intersting, that in Japanese, 泳ぐ, is not a verb of motion, and that there are few true verbs of motion in Japanese.

    I will study some more, to make sure I have this firmly ingrained in my mind.

    Thanks again
     

    cheshire

    Senior Member
    Catholic (Cat-holic, not Catholic)
    Yes, I agree. But whether 江ノ島に泳ぐ is OK is still questionable to me. へ is more acceptable. I guess 漁師 or swimmers would find them more acceptable than us.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top