Grammar Info

N5 Lesson 3: 13/13

い-Adjective (Past)

Was, Were (Past tense)

い-Adjectives, whether positive or negative, cannot be used with だ


[い]Adjective[+ かった

おもしろ + かった
(あたら) + かった


  • Part of Speech


  • Word Type

    Auxiliary Verb

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  • 品詞


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  • 使用域


About い-Adjective (Past)

In order to create the past form of い-Adjectives, you must add the auxiliary verb た to the 'past' conjunction form of the い-Adjective. The past conjunction form is created by removing the い and replacing it with かっ. This structure is equivalent to 'was' in English.

面白(おもしろ)い - 'Interesting' in its base (dictionary form).

面白(おもしろ)かっ - The conjugation form used with た (and several other auxiliary verbs).

From these examples, we can see how the casual past form is constructed. In modern Japanese, simply adding です after た is considered to be the standard polite past form.


Although this is considered to be polite by most people, using です after かった is not academically correct Japanese. However, considering how common its usage has become, it may be used in almost any situation confidently.


  • (さむ)かった。((さむ)

    It was cold.

  • それ(たか)かった。((たか)

    That was expensive.

  • 田中(たなか)さん(つよ)かったです。((つよ)

    Tanaka-san was strong.

  • (わたし)(あね)(いえ)(ふる)かったです。((ふる)

    My (older) sister's house was old.

  • 動物園(どうぶつえん)(たの)かった。((たの)しい

    The zoo was fun.

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い-Adjective (Past) – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (1 in total)

  • NoHiddenCosts


    If using “です” after “かった” is not “academically correct Japanese”, what is?

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