Lesson 240: Pluralizing suffixes - たち and ら
To turn certain words into plural forms, we can add たち to the end of a noun or pronoun. It can be written in hiragana, but is also sometimes written in kanji (達).
たち is often used with personal pronouns such as 私 + たち = 私たち (we, us), or あなた + たち = あなたたち (you, you guys).
It can be used to mark a group of people, e.g. 学生たち (students), 子供たち (children). Of course, 学生 and 子供 can be used on their own to mean ‘students’ and ‘children’, so the key difference here is that たち implies there is a group in particular you are referring to.
|Children like anime.||
kodomo ha anime ga suki desu.
|The children at this school are really kind.||
kono gakkou no kodomotati ha totemo yasasii desu.
|they; them (female only)||
The suffix ら (等) can also be used with some nouns to pluralize them, but as it can come across as very informal or direct it is safer to use たち when in doubt.
However, ら is used with 彼 to make 彼ら (they, them) which is more commonly used than 彼たち.
ら is also commonly used with これ and それ.
|(I) think they go to the same university.||
karera ha onazi daigaku ni iku to omou.
|"Whose books are these?" "They're mine."||
korera no hon ha dare no desu ka. watasi no desu.
|What are those?||
sorera ha nani ka.