Word Order in a sentence

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On this page, you can learn how to put words in a correct order in a sentence.

It is a very good idea to understand how a Japanese sentence is structured, if you are a beginner of learning Japanese. There are two basic word orders.

Order 1

You need to follow the two rules below if you find a subject at the beginning of a sentence.

Example of Order 1

Let’s say you need to change the English sentence below into Japanese.

I go to school by bus on Monday.

This is how you place Japanese words for the English sentence above.

I, は, Monday, on, bus, by, school, to, go

This is the final sentence in Japanese.

私 は 月曜日 に バス で 学校 に 行く。

Don’t forget 。(a full stop) at the end of a sentence.

Order 2

You need to go to the end of the sentence straight away to translate backwards if you use the following sentence patterns:

  • There is + noun
  • Some people + verb
  • Please + verb
  • Let’s + verb
  • Why don’t you + verb
  • It is adjective + to + verb
  • Sentence to start with ‘You’
  • Sentence to start with ‘It’ to describe time or weather

Example of Order 2

Let’s say you need to change the English sentence below into Japanese.

There is a man behind a car.

This is how you place Japanese words for the English sentence above.

a car, behind, a man, there is

You don’t need to translate ‘a’.

This is the final sentence in Japanese.

車 の後ろに 男 がいます

Don’t forget 。(a full stop) at the end of a sentence.