The omission of particles HA(は) GA(が) WO(を) NI(に) in Japanese : Hey everyone, in today’s online Japanese lesson we are going to be looking at the omission of particles in casual Japanese, basically meaning that you drop the particle from the sentence.
We are going to look today at why this is done, when it is acceptable, but more important, when it’s just not okay!
So guys, are you ready? Let’s get into today’s online Japanese lesson and start learning something new.
Omitting particles : The Casual Speaker
If you have learnt Japanese through a textbook or formal educational setting then odds are that you are going to be quite knowledgeable in knowing how to use the Japanese particles, they are essential! They tell us where things happen, who does what to what, indicate direction, topic, subject and so on and so forth. You may have however come into contact away from a sentence without a particle and wondered what the hell is going on. More than likely, this would have been whilst talking to a friend, texting or mainly reading YouTube comments online.
You see, away from the world of formal, polite Japanese it’s sometimes okay to drop the particle, under a few conditions. For the casual speaker, the texter, the chatter, the commenter, as long as you can remove the particle and still understand the context, it is absolutely fine to drop the particle.
But be warned, omitting the wrong particle in the wrong situation can be a grave mistake and also a bad habit to acquire. Before we look at the cons of this, let’s first look at some of the benefits and how to use this correctly.
The Benefits of Omitting particles in Japanese
One of the main benefits of omitting particles in Japanese is to, most of all, save time. Like in English where we drop the subject or topic of the conversation once it has been made apparent. In this way you can save a lot of time and vastly improve the speed of your communication. Let’s take a look at an example.
Kimi ha nihongo ga jouzu desu
You are good at Japanese
The meaning of this sentence is perfectly clear with the particles that we are using here. We can see who is good at something and what they are good at. Although, depending on the situation, it may be obvious that the person praising your Japanese skills is talking to you. In this case, the sentence could be understood without the particle so they could use:
(You) are good at Japanese
In this example you can see how it would be super quick and convenient to shorten the sentence to this pattern.
Terebi (ga) arimasu.
(There is a TV.)
Sumaho ga nai.
(There is no smartphone.)
Rajio ga nakatta.
(There was no radio.)
In most cases you can drop は, が, を, and に and still be understood by the listener, however で and の should be kept as they provide context that cannot be taken away as this would confuse the listener.
The main question that you have to ask yourself is, “Would this make sense without the particle”
Be warned, omitting can be a slippery slope!
So you could be thinking, “great, I can drop all those tricky particles and still be understood, I no longer have to remember if its に or を I can just omit it, yey!” Well certainly you could, however this is just a short term solution to a long term problem, you will likely always fall back on this habit and really damage your language learning progress.
As mentioned earlier, it is fine to omit particles in casual situations such as talking with friends, texting etc but if you accidentally use this with formal emails, talking with seniors or resumes it will not do you any justice. In fact, they will probably think that you can’t speak Japanese very well and that really is not the kind of impression that you want to give out.
Realistically, you don’t want to be doing this until you have a thorough grasp of the particle uses and can justify omitting the particles in certain situations to save you time and not to be lazy and cover up your lack of grammar knowledge.
In conclusion, it is absolutely fine to omit certain particles that are not needed to make sense, as long as the context is understood. That being said, you should be mindful of the situations in which you omit particles and try your absolute best not to get into bad habits of omitting particles too often.
Thanks for reading todays online Japanese lesson everyone, we hope you gained a lot from it and we are excited to see you again in the next article. Until then guys keep studying as always and see you next time またね。