Pointing words 1

The first two sets of pointing words.

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KanjiVocabularyPointing words 1

Kanji

Dog

New

Vocabulary

この

This

その

That

あの

That

どの

Which

どれ

Which

シャツ

Shirt

Dog

新しい

New, Fresh, Latest

Pointing words 1

Pointing words are a group of pronouns that indicate the direction of an item/person/location etc. By now we have learned two groups of pointing words: これ, それ, あれ, どれ and この, その, あの, どの.

You will note that both groups of words have the same starting characters (, , , ), and all of the words within a group have the same second character (, ). This can be a bit confusing at the beginning, but it becomes very helpful when remembering how to use each word if you remember the following rules:

  • The first character defines the distance
  • The second character determines how you use the word in a sentence

There are more groups of pointing words that are not covered in this lesson. They will be taught at a later time, however they still follow the same two rules mentioned above.

The first character defines the distance

The first character of each word (, , , ) defines the distance between the speaker, the listener, and the item which you are pointing to. This is shown in the table below:

First characterDistance
Item is closer to the speaker
Item is closer to the listener
Item is far away from both the listener and the speaker
The distance to the item is unknown

The second character determines how to use each word

Pointing words ending with are used when we do not want to specify the item we are pointing to. This can be because you do not know the name of the item, or because it is obvious what you are pointing to. Some examples are shown below:

  • これはあたらしいシャツです。
  • This is a new shirt.
  • それはみずです。
  • That is water.
  • あれはおおきいいぬです。
  • That is a big dog.
  • あなたのシャツはどれですか?
  • Which one is your shirt?

Pointing words ending with are used together with a noun to specify the item you are pointing to. Let's take a look at some examples below:

  • このはなはきれいです。
  • This flower is beautiful.
  • そのいぬちいさいです。
  • That dog is small.
  • あのひと先生せんせいですか?
  • Is that person a teacher?
  • どのシャツがあたらしいですか?
  • Which shirt is new?
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