Whenever I’m learning something new, I like to associate the new material with familiar things to better recall and retain the information.
Today, I thought I’d share how I practiced learning the basic uses of the de で particle using one of my all-time favorite movies, Beetlejuice. I’ve included five example sentences using movie scenes to demonstrate how the de で particle may be used.
First Off, What is the De で Particle?
The de で particle is used to indicate things such as:
- where an action takes place,
- the means by which an action takes place,
- a total, time, or cost,
- what something is made of, and
WHERE AN ACTIONS TAKES PLACE (location: in, at, on, etc.)
いえでおどりましよう。 Let’s dance in the house.
We look in front of the で to learn the house [いえ] is where we’re being invited to dance. で is used here, rather than に because the focus of the sentence isn’t the house, it’s the action happening inside the house: dancing.
2. THE MEANS BY WHICH AN ACTION TAKES PLACE (by, with, in, etc.)
かれはチョークでドアをつくった。He made the door with chalk.
We look in front of the で to learn that chalk [チョーク] is the means our subject (は) he [かれ] made [をつくった] the door [ドア].
3. COST, AMOUNT OF TIME, OR TOTAL AMOUNT OF SOMETHING
あなたは1時間半でえいがをみることができます。You can watch the movie in an hour and a half.
Notice that the amount of time it takes to watch the movie comes before the で particle.
4. WHAT SOMETHING IS MADE OF
この手はエビでつくられています. This hand is made of shrimp.
この＝this, 手＝hand, エビ＝shrimp
5. CAUSE (Because of, due to, owing to, etc.)
車が落ちたので、彼らは死んだ。 Because the car fell, they died.
The cause (falling) comes before the de で particle.
Hopefully this helped give a bit more clarity on the basic uses of the de で particle. If learning this way isn’t your cup of tea, you can also visit the following resources on the de で particle:
PuniPuni Japan: http://www.punipunijapan.com/japanese-particle-de/
Nihongo Ichiban: https://nihongoichiban.com/2011/03/27/particle-%E3%81%A7-de/
Thanks for reading!
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ありがとう // Arigatou // Thank you!
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