Grammar Info

N1 Lesson 8: 10/19


-like, Looking, Feeling, With an air of, To become

Notice that 古びた and ひなびた are generally only used to modify (describe) nouns.


Noun + びる
[い]Adjective[ + びる
Noun + びた + Noun
[い]Adjective[ + びた + Noun

Used with a limited set of expressions:

・Uncommon/sometimes used in literary language:

・Generally not used in modern language:


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About びる

びる, like めく, is a verb that is used exclusively as a suffix. It is a る-Verb, and may be translated as '(A) looking', '(A) seeming', or 'behaving like (A)'. びる is quite formal, and will follow a limited set of expressions.
びる will appear after nouns, or occasionally the stem form of い-Adjectives.
  • 実家(じっか)屋根裏部屋(やねうらべや)掃除(そうじ)していたら、(ふる)びたアルバムが続々(つぎつぎ)()てきた。
    While cleaning out the attic at my parents' house, I found a series of old-looking albums.
  • 彼女(かのじょ)(おさな)びて()えるけど、実際(じっさい)は33(さい)らしい。
    She is young-looking, but apparently she is 33 years old.
  • 彼女(かのじょ)大人(おとな)びて()えるが、まだ社会(しゃかい)のことなんて()かってないただの学生(がくせい)だ。
    She is adult-looking, but she is actually just a student that knows nothing about the real world.
  • この(まち)田舎(いなか)びているから()きだ。
    I like this town because it is rural-like.
びる indicates that, according to the speaker, something 'gives off the sense of (A)', and is based on visual information. As it is a descriptive verb, びる will change to びた when linked directly to a second noun.
  • (わたし)はどんなに治安(ちあん)()くても、田舎(いなか)びた(まち)には()みたくない。
    No matter how safe it is, I don't want to live in a rural-looking town.
  • なぜ子供(こども)大人(おとな)びた格好(かっこう)をしたがるのだろうか。
    I wonder why kids tend to want to dress adult-like.
Fun Fact
Both びる and めく can be thought of as similar to さ, the structure that pairs with adjectives to create new nouns indicating an extent. This is due to the fact that when びる or めく attach to a word, they turn that word itself into a verb that expresses 'having the feeling of (A)', or 'having gained the feeling of (A)' when used in past tense.




    A novel, prologue: 'Asahigaoka was a coastal fishing village with a rustic feel to it, where time passed peacefully.'


    A novel: 'Vamirio looked mature-like, but she was a pure girl with easy-to-read facial expressions.'


    A novel: 'The old-looking wooden bridge was making a disturbing noise with every step.'


    At first glance, it might be a small city with a rustic feel to it, but when the summer begins, numerous tourists come.


    'Kumiko feels mature for her age.'

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