Grammar Info

N1 Lesson 2: 9/17

う・よう + が~まいが

Even if, No matter what, Whether or not, [Emphatic], Volitional + が


Even if / No matter what

Verb [おう] + (1)
Verb[まい] + (1)
Noun + だろう.(2) + (1)
[な]Adjective + だろう(2) + (1)
[い]Adjective[+ かろう + (1)

Whether or not

Verb [おう] + (1) + Verb[まい] + (1)
Noun (A) + だろう(2) + (1) + Noun (B) だろう(2) + (1)
[な]Adjective1 + だろう(2) + (1) + [な]Adjective2 + だろう(2) + (1)
[い]Adjective[+ かろう + (1) + [い]Adjective[+ かろう + (1)

(2) であろう


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About ようが~まいが

When both the positive and negative volitional auxiliary verbs are combined with a verb in Japanese, it has the nuance of 'whether or not (A)', the result will be (B)'. This is quite emphatic, and has a literal meaning similar to 'say it does (A) or say it doesn't (A), it will still be (B)'.
As a reminder, the positive auxiliary verbs of volition are either う or よう, depending on what they are being connected to, while the negative auxiliary verb of volition is まい. Either the case marking particle が or と will appear after both the positive and the negative, with が being slightly more common.
  • 忘年会(ぼうねんかい)出席(しゅっせき)しようが出席(しゅっせき)するまいが会費(かいひ)はみんなからもらっています。
    Whether you attend the year-end party or not, we will collect the admissions fee from everyone.
  • (あめ)()うが()まいが明日(あした)絶対(ぜったい)()りに()くと()めた。
    Whether it rains or not, I have decided to go fishing tomorrow.
While this structure is primarily seen after verbs, it is important to remember that other auxiliary verbs such as だ can be conjugated in the same way, as can い-Adjectives with the less common かろう structure. This means that both nouns, な-Adjectives and い-Adjectives can also appear using a similar grammar pattern. However, because the negative volitional まい cannot pair with these structures, an antonym will usually appear with them instead, with both words using the う or よう positive volitional.
  • (たの)かろうが(たの)しくなかろうが学校(がっこう)子供(こども)仕事(しごと)だから学校(がっこう)には()かなくてはだめだ。
    Whether it is fun or not, school is a child's job, so you must go to school.
  • 安全(あんぜん)だろうが安全(あんぜん)なかろうが、2メートル以上(いじょう)場所(ばしょ)()がる場合(ばあい)安全帯(あんぜんたい)(かなら)装着(そうちゃく)してください。
    Whether it is safe or not, always wear a safety belt when you climb to a place higher than 2 meters.
  • (いぬ)であろうが(ねこ)であろうが、どちらにしても動物(どうぶつ)なので(かる)気持(きも)ちで()っては()けない。
    Whether it is a dog or a cat, they are both animals, so they must not be bought on a whim.
Based primarily on the use of volitionals, this grammar pattern will often indicate the speaker's strong will or opinion that will not change regardless of (A).


  • (ひと)(なん)()おうが、ずっとあなた(あい)しています!

    No matter what people say, I will always love you!

  • 生徒(せいと)授業(じゅぎょう)出席(しゅっせき)ようが出席(しゅっせき)するまいが(わたし)はきちんと授業(じゅぎょう)(すす)めていく。

    Whether or not students attend, I will proceed with my lecture as planned.

  • (なん)(ねん)かかろうと、ドラゴンボールを()つけるつもりだ!

    Even if it takes many years, I intend to find the dragon balls!

  • 商品(しょうひん)上質(じょうしつ)であろうが悪質(あくしつ)であろうが、よく()れるものはよく()れる。

    Whether the product is of good quality or low quality, if it sells well, it sells well.

  • 日本語(にほんご)勉強(べんきょう)(むずか)かろうが(やさ)かろうが流暢(りゅうちょう)(はな)せるようになるまで勉強(べんきょう)する

    Whether learning Japanese is difficult or easy, I will learn until I become fluent.

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ようが~まいが – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (2 in total)

  • Melanthe


    Why not split up this grammar point into a ‘even if/no matter what’ and an ‘whether or not’? That way we’d get more opportunities to practise each one. As it is right now, I doubt two sentences is enough to master the ‘even if/no matter what’ version.

  • wrt7MameLZE33wlmpCAV


    Are が・と supposed to be missing from the structure details for 形容詞?

    image718×508 26.2 KB

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