The Past Is the Past: Japanese Adjectives in the Past Tense :Hey there, all of you future Japanese masters! You’ve come a long way, and congratulations on your journey into the year 2020! 

By now, you are familiar with a few Japanese adjectives. Therefore, for this lesson, we’re taking it one step further! Today, we’re going to learn how to conjugate adjectives into the past tense in order to talk about previous states of being!

The Past Is the Past: Japanese Adjectives in the Past Tense

Here we go!

TOP 15 BASIC Japanese i-adjectives You must know first in Japanese | Japanese language lesson

اليابانية الصفة إعادة النظر

Before we begin, let’s review some common adjectives in the present tense. In Japanese, there are two types of adjectives: أناadjectives و الشعيدadjectives. أنا-adjectives end in the هيراغانا حرف い (أنا), and غadjectives end in な (غ). The first table below is a list of أنا-adjectives, and the second is for غadjectives.

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أنا-ADJECTIVES

اليابانيةروماجيالإنجليزية
美 し いutsukushiiجميلة
忙 し いisogashiiمشغول
早 いhayaiearly/fast
新 し いatarashiiالجديد
短 いmijikaiقصيرة

NA-ADJECTIVES

اليابانيةروماجيالإنجليزية
危険(な)kiken (na)خطير
嫌い(な)kirai (na)hated/disliked
ひま(な)hima (na)free (not busy)
大切(な)taisetsu (na)مهم
元気(な)genki (na)healthy/energetic/in good spirits

Now that we’ve familiarized ourselves with a few common أنا- و الشعيدadjectives, let’s create a few sentences!

今年の花は美しい! 
Kotoshi no hana wa utsukushii!
The flowers this year are beautiful!
あの崖は危険です!
Ano gake wa kiken desu!
That cliff is dangerous!

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أنا-Adjectives in the Past Tense

In order to conjugate an أنا-الصفة into the past tense, you simply remove the last character い and replace it with かった (katta). 

If you want to make the sentence formal, you add です (ديسو) to the end of かった.

The table below shows how to conjugate أنا-adjectives into the past tense. The word in parenthesis is only added if you want to make the sentence formal. 

أنا-ADJECTIVES (PAST TENSE)

اليابانيةروماجيالإنجليزية
美し  ➝ 美しかった(です)utsukushiأنا  ➝ utsukushikatta (desu)beautiful  ➝ was beautiful
忙し  ➝ 忙しかった(です)isogashiأنا  ➝ isogashikatta (desu)busy  ➝ was busy
  ➝ 早かった(です)هياأنا  ➝ hayakatta (desu)early/fast  ➝ was early/fast
新 し  ➝ 新しかった(です)atarashiأنا  ➝ atarashikatta (desu)new  ➝ was new
  ➝ 短かった(です)mijikaأنا  ➝ mijikakatta (desu)short  ➝ was short

Now that we know how to conjugate أناadjectives into the past tense, let’s create some sentences! The sentences with です attached to the end are formal and those without are casual.

Example sentences (أناadjectives):

春の花は美しかったです。
Haru no hana wa utsukushikatta desu.
The flowers in spring were beautiful.
私は先週忙しかった。
Watashi wa senshuu isogashikatta.
I was busy last week.
彼はマラソンで早かったです。
Kare wa marason de hayakatta desu.
He was fast at the marathon.
彼女のブラウスは新しかった。
Kanojo no burausu wa atarashikatta.
Her blouse was new.
健さんは若い時、足が短かったです。
Ken-san wa wakai toki, ashi ga mijikakatta desu.
When Ken was young, his legs were short.

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Na-Adjectives in the Past Tense

In order to conjugate غadjectives into the past tense, you simply leave out the な and add either だった (datta) for casual sentences, or でした (deshita) for formal sentences.

The table below shows how to conjugate الشعيدadjectives into the past tense. The word before the slash (だった) is used for casual occasions, and the word after the slash (でした) is used for formal occasions.  

NA-ADJECTIVES (PAST TENSE)

اليابانيةروماجيالإنجليزية
危険  ➝ 危険だった/でしたkiken  ➝ kiken datta / deshitadangerous  ➝ was dangerous
嫌い  ➝ 嫌いだった/でしたkirai  ➝ kirai datta / deshitahated/disliked  ➝ was hated/disliked
ひま  ➝ ひまだった/でしたهيما  ➝ hima datta / deshitafree (not busy)  ➝ was free (not busy)
大切  ➝ 大切だった/でしたtaisetsu  ➝ taisetsu datta / deshitaimportant  ➝ was important
元気  ➝ 元気だった/でしたجينكي  ➝ genki datta / deshitahealthy/energetic/in good spirits  ➝ was healthy/energetic/in good spirits

Now that we know how to conjugate غadjectives into the past tense, let’s create some sample sentences! 

Example sentences (غadjectives in the past tense):

昨日雪で道路が危険でした。
Kinou yuki de douro ga kiken deshita.
Yesterday, due to the snow, the roads were dangerous.
私は子供の時、ブロッコリーが嫌いだった。
Watashi wa kodomo no toki, burokkorii ga kirai datta.
When I was a child, I hated broccoli.
高校生の時は沢山ひまでした。
Koukousei no toki wa takusan hima deshita.
In my high school days, I had lots of free time.
彼は少年の時、自転車が大切だった。
Kare wa shounen no toki, jitensha ga taisetsu datta.
When he was a boy, his bicycle was important to him.
お祖母さんは40年前元気でした。
Obaasan wa yon-juu nen mae genki deshita.
My grandmother was energetic 40 years ago.

In summary

In Japanese, there are two types of adjectivesأنا-adjectives و الشعيدadjectives. Both of them can easily be changed into the past tense.

مع أنا-adjectives, you simply remove the い at the end of the word and replace it with かった. If you want to make the sentence formal, you add です after かった. Take a look at the differences in the table below.

WAS BEAUTIFUL

عارضرسمي
美しかったutsukushikatta美しかったですutsukushikatta desu

مع الشعيدadjectives, you leave out the な and add だった instead. For formal sentences, you use でした instead of だった. The differences are below. 

WAS BEAUTIFUL

عارضرسمي
危険だったkiken datta危険でしたkiken deshita

Now that you have a new قواعد point under your belt, it’s time to get out there and ممارسة! Talk with your Japanese speaking partner about the way things used to be in your pasts. Make sure to utilize both أنا-adjectives و غadjectives so that you get used to the differences between the two.

Remember, it’s impossible to master a new language if you don’t ممارسة! And if you ممارسة every day, your skills will sharpen even quicker! Therefore, let’s make it a goal in 2020 to ممارسة Japanese every day! 

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نوصي

Negative form : Adding くない to Japanese Adjectives for Negation
Attaching ければ to Japanese Adjectives to Form the Conditional