Grammar Info

N5 Lesson 1: 1/12

To be, Is

だ cannot be used with い-Adjectives


Noun +
[な]Adjective +


  • Part of Speech

    Auxiliary Verb

  • Word Type

    Dependent Word

  • Register


  • 品詞


  • 単語の種類


  • 使用域


About だ

is an auxiliary verb in Japanese that acts as an expression of determination, or strong assertion. It simply states that something 'is' a certain way. It is a casual equivalent of です (another auxiliary verb).
should always be attached to the end of nouns, or words that can behave like nouns, such as な-Adjectives.
  • アイスクリーム。(Noun + )
    It is ice cream.
  • (てら)。(Noun + )
    It is a temple.
  • 危険(きけん)。(な-Adj + )
    It is dangerous.
  • 大切(たいせつ)。(な-Adj + )
    It is important.
should never be attached to the end of い-Adjectives. In these cases, it is considered more correct to attach a polite equivalent, like です.
  • (おお)きい
    It is big. (Unnatural in Japanese)
  • (おお)きいです
    It is big. (Natural in Japanese)
While is often thought of as the casual 'form' of です, that is actually not correct. です is a polite speech word. The official 'formal version' of is である. We will learn this grammar point a bit later. である can often be seen in articles, and formal writing, while です is more common in polite speech.


  • (わたし)

    It is me.

  • (ほん)

    It is a book.

  • (ねこ)

    (It) is a cat.

  • 学生(がくせい)

    (I) am a student.

  • 綺麗(きれい)

    It is beautiful.

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