Grammar Info

N5 Lesson 8: 6/13

Verb + まで

Until (something) happens

Structure

Verb + まで

Details

  • Part of Speech

    Noun

  • Word Type

    Adverbial Particle

  • Register

    Standard

  • 品詞

    名詞

  • 単語の種類

    副助詞

  • 使用域

    一般

About Verb + まで

まで is a particle that roughly means 'as far as (A)', or 'until the point of (A)'. When used with verbs, it is often translated as 'until (A) happens'.

Because まで means 'as far as/until the point of', it cannot be used with verbs in past tense, as would usually be the case in English. Due to this, past tense will be made clear by the context of the story, or verbs that come later in the sentence.

When used with a place, まで functions similarly to に. This means that someone or something will go 'to' the place, but not go any further.

Caution

To get a better idea of how まで is used in relation to the past, let's have a look at another example, and how it would translate in English.

  • 授業(じゅぎょう)(はじ)まで先生(せんせい)()なかった
    The teacher didn't come until the class started.

Here we can see that the English sentence will say 'started', but (はじ)まる 'start' (non-past tense) is required in Japanese. However, later in the sentence, ()なかった (past tense) is used. In this way, the overall meaning stays the same, while being slightly different to what an English native speaker would expect.

Examples

--:--

    映画(えいが)(はじ)まで友達(ともだち)(はな)した

    Until the movie started, I talked with my friend.

    (かれ)()まで日本語(にほんご)勉強(べんきょう)します

    Until he comes, I will study Japanese.

    カタカナ(おぼ)まで(わたし)()ない

    Until I memorize katakana, I won't sleep.

    その漢字(かんじ)(おぼ)まで辞書(じしょ)使(つか)

    Until I remember that kanji, I will use a dictionary.

    風呂(ふろ)(はい)まで、ゆっくりしたい

    Until I get in the bath, I want to relax.

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Verb + まで – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (1 in total)

  • NickavGnaro

    NickavGnaro

    All the given examples have the verb in the present form only. Are there any examples of the verb being in the past form? Or is the structure supposed to be Verb[る] + まで?

    For instance, instead of

    映画が始まるまで、友達と話した。

    , could one instead say

    映画が始まったまで、友達と話した。

    without any change in meaning?

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