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Lesson 6: I don't read books.

This lesson is about the Japanese particle を. Wo is pronounced 'o' and will be spelled 'o' in romanized Japanese but should not be confused with the vowel お. を is only used as a particle. It is used to mark the object of a sentence. The particle comes after the object and before the verb. Basically, you have "noun を action verb" which means: "do/does the action verb to the noun."
にほんごを べんきょう します study Japanese language
ほんを よみます read a book
ざっしを よみます read a magazine
にくを たべます eat meat
りんごを たべます eat an apple
テレビを みます watch TV
コーラを のみます drink cola
おんがくを ききます listen to music

One can also attach a subject to the sentence to explain who or what is doing the action.

わたしは ほんを よみます。

I read books.

アンナさんは にほんごを べんきょう します。

Anna studies Japanese.

よしさんは おんがくを ききます。

Yoshi listens to music.

あのねこは りんごを たべます。

That cat over there eats apples.

Well, that's all well and good, but what if you want to say you don't eat meat? or don't drink coffee? Notice that all of the verbs above end in ます. That is called the masu ending. (It's pronounced like the 'moss' that grows on the ground.) That is the positive present (or future) form of the verb in polite form. If you want to use the negative present form of the verb you change the ます to ません. So "I listen", "わたしは ききます", becomes "I don't listen", "わたしは ききません"


わたしは ほんを よみません。


I don't read books.

メアリーさんは りんごを たべません。

Mary doesn't eat apples.

わたしの ねこは バナナを たべません。

My cat doesn't eat bananas.

マイクさんは にほんごを べんきょう しません。

Mike doesn't study Japanese.

Lesson 6 Vocabulary


べんきょう します


object marker (particle)


to study
to eat
to hear or listen
to read
to drink
to watch, look, or see

present positive verb form
present negative verb form

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