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Learn Japanese - Japanese That's "Easy to Do"
By:Peter Galante

Learn Japanese rapidly! Some things in life are easy, and some are hard. It might be easy to cook a simple meal but really hard to get up early in the morning. Imagine trying to speak English without being able to express "it's easy to" and "it's hard to." It would be just about impossible! In this Beginner Japanese article, you'll learn how to express that something is "easy to do" or "hard to do" in Japanese. You'll discover the various masu forms of Japanese words that you'll need. In addition, you'll find all sorts of example sentences that you can incorporate into your everyday Japanese.

Vocabulary: In this article, you'll learn the following words and phrases:

anata - "you"

kau - "to buy" (class 1 verb)

karui - "light" (-i ending adjective)

haku - "to put on shoes/footwear" (class 1 verb)

ninki - "popularity"

deru - "to appear, to leave, to exit" (class 2 verb)

dooshite - "why, for what reason"

kanashii - "sad" (-i ending adjective)

sain - "autograph, signature"

kaku - "to write" (class 1 verb)

kutsu - "shoes, footwear"

Grammar: In this article, you'll learn the following words and phrases:

Useful Vocabulary and Phrases

haku - "to wear, to put on" (class 1 verb)

Kiru also means "to wear" or "to put on." Generally speaking, we use kiru when talking about items put on the upper body, such as shirts or jacket, whereas haku covers the items worn on the lower body, such as pants or shoes.

The opposite action, "to take off," is nugu, which we use for both the upper and lower body.


"to wear jeans" ? jiinzu o haku
"to wear sneakers" ? suniikaa o haku
"to wear a coat" ? kooto o kiru
"to wear a kimono" ? kimono o kiru

Kochira ni sain o onegai shimasu.

"Please sign here."

In Japanese, sain means either "signature" or "autograph."

"Signature" - sain or shomei

"Autograph" - sain

Shitsurei shimashita.

Shitsurei means "rudeness" or "discourtesy." Shimashita is the formal past form of the verb suru. So, this phrase literally means "I committed discourtesy" and is equivalent to "I'm sorry" or "excuse me" in English.

Target Phrase

Kono kutsu wa karukute, haki yasui desu yo.

"These shoes are light and easy to put on."

Kono pen wa kakinikui.

"This pen is hard to write with."

The usage of the adjective-forming suffixes -yasui and -nikui is today's target grammar point. [masu stem of a verb] + yasui and [masu stem of a verb] + nikui mean "easy to do" and "hard to do," respectively. They conjugate as i-adjectives.

"Easy To Do" & "Hard To Do"

[masu stem of a verb] + yasui = "easy to..."
[masu stem of a verb] + nikui = "hard (or difficult) to..."

Class 1 Verbs

"English" / Dictionary Form / Masu form / Masu Stem / "Easy to..." (...yasui) / "Hard to..." (...nikui)

"to use" / tsukau / tsukaimasu / tsukai / tsukaiyasui / tsukainikui

"to write" / kaku / kakimasu / kaki / kakiyasui / kakinikui

"to speak" / hanasu / hanashimasu / hanashi / hanashiyasui / hanashinikui

"to hold" / motsu / mochimasu / mochi / mochiyasui / mochinikui

"to live" / sumu / sumimasu / sumi / sumiyasui / suminikui

"to sit" / suwaru / suwarimasu / suwari / suwariyasui / suwarinikui

Class 2 Verbs

"English" / Dictionary Form / Masu form / Masu Stem / "Easy to..." (...yasui) / "Hard to..." (...nikui)

"to see" / miru / mimasu / mi / miyasui / minikui

"to wear" / kiru / kimasu / ki / kiyasui / kinikui

"to eat" / taberu / tabemasu / tabe / tabeyasui / tabenikui

Class 3 Verbs

"English" / Dictionary Form / Masu form / Masu Stem / "Easy to..." (...yasui) / "Hard to..." (...nikui)

"to do" / suru / shimasu / shi / shiyasui / shinikui

"to come" / kuru / kimasu / ki / kiyasui / kinikui


Hawai wa totemo sumiyasui tokoro desu. Hawaii is a quite livable place.
Tookyoo wa totemo suminikui tokoro desu. Tokyo is a very difficult place to live.>
Kono kutsu wa omokute, arukinikui desu. These shoes are heavy and hard (uncomfortable) to walk in.i>
Kono kutsu wa karukute, arukiyasui desu. These shoes are light and easy (comfortable) to walk in.


Please complete the sentences by changing the verbs into their appropriate forms.

Kono ji wa chiisakute,___________________________(yomu). (ji means,"letter.")
Suniikaa wa,___________________________(haku). (suniikaa means, "sneakers.")
Kono michi wa hirokute,___________________________ (unten suru). (michi means, "street." hiroi means, "wide." unten suru means, "to drive.")

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