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Japanese

Lesson 155: The verb 言う

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is the Japanese word for to say or to speak. It behaves like other verbs but it is used in conjunction with two different particles: the particle when making a quotation, or the particle for non-quotes. You can also use to ask how to say something in Japanese using this useful pattern: XXXXは日本語にほんごなんいますか?

EnglishJapanese
How do you say "car" in Japanese?”Car” は ほん で なんと います か?
"Car" ha nihongo de nanto iimasu ka?
"Watermelon" is "suika" in Japanese.”Watermelon” は ほん で 西すい と います。
"Watermelon" ha nihongo de suika to iimasu.
Please say it again.もう いっかい って ください。
mou ikkai itte kudasai.
She didn't say that.かのじょ は それ を いません でした。
kanozyo ha sore wo iimasen desita.

Note that in the last sentence the particle is used instead of . Otherwise, the sentence would have meant: She didn't say "that". You'll learn more about quoting people in a later lesson.

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