Japanese 130 - The -て form and the imperative part 1

As you have already learned, there are three verb groups: Group 1, or だん; Group 2, or いちだん; and Group 3. In this lesson you will learn how to obtain the て-form for verbs from Group 2 and Group 3, and how the て-form can be used to make requests in Japanese. First, we will take a closer look at how we can determine what group a verb belongs to.

Classifying verbs

You can classify most Japanese verb by asking the following questions in order.

QuestionVerb groupExamples
Is the verb する or ?
(Include noun + verb compounds like しつれいする)
Group 3する
Does the verb not end in an iru or eru sound?Group 1ある
The verb ends in an eru or iru sound.Probably Group 2べる
Maybe group 1はい

Obtaining the て-form for verbs of Group 2 and Group 3

The て-form is a verb conjugation that can be used in many different situations. For example, it can be used for making requests, connecting sentences together, and it's used in the present progressive tense.

The て-form for Group 2, or いちだん, verbs is obtained by replacing the final with .

The て-form for Group 3 verbs is also obtained by replacing the final with , but in addition, the u sound changes into an i sound.

Dictionary formVerb groupて-form
べるGroup 2べて
Group 2
するGroup 3して
Group 3

Making requests with the て-form

There's a variety of ways for asking for something or making a request in Japanese, which vary in terms of the level of politeness or appropriateness for specific situations. In this lesson we will introduce the pattern て-form + ください (please). This is a very versatile way to ask for something used among both friends and in more formal situations. Check out the example sentences below to see this grammar point used in context.