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This can only be used to express the desires of the speaker. It cannot be used when talking about what a third person wants or doesn't want to do.
I want to eat curry.
My little brother wants to eat curry.
The suffix たがる is added in place of たい, and is conjugated like verbs such as 帰る or 入る（はいる）.
When used in the past tense, たがっていた is used, and not たがった.
たい and the third-person
While sentences like 「弟はカレーを食べたい。」 are almost never used in isolation, they can be used to describe the desires of a third person. This can be done when the speaker comes to understand that desire through some other information: the other persons tells them, or they look at the other person and deduce it. Please look at the following examples:
It seems like my little brother wants curry.
It looks like my little brother wants curry.
My brother wants curry.
My brother said he wants to eat curry.
All three examples describe the desires of the third person somewhat indirectly, these are all commonly used.
Although it varies from person to person, some people might be offended if you use the [PERSON]は[FOOD]を食べたいです when talking about them. The statement is very direct, and they might wonder why you are presuming to state what they want. Again, by using the indirect forms, this can be avoided.
It can sound impolite if the たい form is used to ask about the wants of someone you are talking to (second person), especially if that person if of a higher status than you (and polite forms should be used).
(When offering someone some coffee)
コーヒーを飲みたいですか？(incorrect: inappropriate in some situations)
Would you like some coffee?
(Inviting someone to come with you)
私と一緒に行きたいですか？(incorrect: can be construed as arrogant)
Do you want to come with me?
Note: while it can be somewhat rude to use the たい form when addressing the wishes/wants of those above you socially (bosses, teachers, etc.), this can be safely used with friends in more informal discussion.
Since the ~たい form generally refers to the 1st person, it is not necessary to include the 私は at the beginning of the sentence unless you want to stress that it's you who wants to (do something).
Both the が and を particles can preceed the verb in たい form, although they are used in different contexts. が can replace を when the stress is focused on the object of the action, and not the action itself.
Oh, it's noon! Let's eat! What sounds good to you?
Here, the question being asked is what do they want to eat.
I want to eat cake.
Since the act of eating is already decided, the が is used to stress that the speaker wants to eat cake (and not pizza, or soup, or bread).
(We) got 1000 yen from Mom. What do you want to do with it?
Here, the question being asked is what do they want to do.
I want to eat cake.
The answer is "eat a cake" (as opposed to going to a movie or buying a game), so no stress is required on the direct object; therefore, the normal を is used.
Psst! There's a special place for user sentences :) - Click on that User submitted tab that's just above your current posts, and enter the sentences in there :). You'll get more genki points that way, and it's much easier to correct sentences and get user feedback.
In affirmative sentences, ~たい almost always refers to one's own wants and desires. (Unless used with ~がる、等)
Therefore, a 私は almost always redundant. In context, of course, it could be used to differentiate between what /I/ want to do and what /YOU/ want to do, but in a general sentence, it isn't needed. It can be used as a question, "what do you want to do?", etc, or to express the previously stated desires of others- "He says he wants to go to Disney", or "I think she wants to buy a car", etc, but it always needs a modification. 「彼はディズニーに行きたいです。」 sounds funny.
edit: Sorry, just saw most of that expressed above, missed it the first time.
is this the proper place to ask questions about the topic? anyway, just to confirm, 私は is not absolutely necessary because ~たい can only be used to express one's own desires. so in the advanced notes' sample sentences, 私は could be erased and it'll still be right?
I want to make a few things clear, so here we go :
1. ”たい” can be used for the third person under certain situations, for example when the desired action is in the past tense ”三木さんはいっぱいケーキを食べたった。”(Mr. Miki wanted to eat a lot of cake.). Although I think its better to use "Verb:masu + たがったえいる" for the third person.
2. Some people may confuse ”たい” as being the english general equivalent of "want", but that is not true. In Japanese there is the auxiliary adjective ”たい” - "want to do something" and the adjective "欲しい" - "want something or want someone to do something for me".
3. People may encounter ”が” being used as the direct object marker rather than ”を” in some situations when the desire to do something is high(”が”) or low(”を”). Some restrictions apply for this use of ”が”, for example it cannot be used when the verb is in passive form.
This would be it, please report for any inconsistencies or errors.
Thanks for the notes! I'm agree that #2 should be mentioned near the top; with a link to the ほしい page. I'm going to confirm 1/3 with a native speaker (just to be absolutely sure), then stick it up on the site.
I got some good info for you. I'll add it in later, but I wanted to explain it first.
3. が/を does *not* relate to a high/low level of desire. What they do are direct stress within the sentence. が forces emphasis to the term before it. If you were to say: ケーキが食べたい ケーキを食べたい
the first one is focusing on not that you want to eat, but what you want to eat. It might follow a question such as: あっ！１２時だから、食べましょう！何がいい？ Here, it's already been stated that eating is going to happen, and your partner is asking you WHAT you want to eat.
Without the が, the stress falls on the verb/action. It might be a good response to the question: お母さんから１０００円をもらった。何をしたい？ Where you are focusing on the idea that you want to eat (instead of buy a book, or go to the movies).
Let me know if that makes sense to you. Edit: It also can show stress, but the 'high/low' that you are referring to is usually more with は／が. When が is used to replace を, it's more for the reason that I gave above.
1. Onto the たい／たがる bit. I went over this thoroughly with a Japanese teacher (国語) at my junior high school. The *correct* way to use the past tense is the same way you'd use the present: ~たい for personal desires, and ~たがる for third person (keep in mind that this can be relaxed a bit for more casual situations).
So, in the past, it would (multiple teachers agreed on this) look like マイケルはピザを食べたがっていた。 and not マイケルはピザを食べたかった。
The only way you'd get the second sentence is if you're quoting the third person 先生はマイケルが「ピザを食べたい」と言っていた。
Seems I got some inconsistencies while explaning things, this would be a correct way to explain things. These cleared some small doubts I had. By the way what you mentioned under 1 I made it clear at the end of entry 1. Thanks for clearing out some of these.
Very well, everything is clear now, thank you for researching that!, I sometimes try to improve things under what I've learned but sometimes find out I make some mistakes. Anyway, I'll try the best I can on making clear some other grammar entries, またね！。
「あなたとあいたいから、一しょにえいがを見ようよ？」 I want to see you, so would you like to see a movie together?
is fine, however, the English translation is a bit off. As I'm sure you know quite well, 「よ」 is used as a direct statement instead of an invitation or question. Perhaps "I want to see you, so let's go see a movie together!" would be a more accurate translation (and, of course, change the "?" to either "!" or "。" at the end of the Japanese sentence).
Another alternative if you want to keep the English translation as is would be to replace the よ with か, or instead of saying ・・・見よう you could use ・・・見ない？
I couldn't find anything further on いかが so I'd like to ask, If I wanted to ask someone of higher status if there is something they would like to say, would I use いかが [where I'd leave room open for them] or ほしい？How would I go about doing this? I could only create a convenient butchering in my mind. Please help anyone.
Sorry for the late reply - had to check with a native speaker to be sure. If you say something like this: 「言いたいことはありますか？」, it sounds like you're asking for an argument. It seems almost too simple, but in this case, 質問はありますか or 他にはありますか would work.
Thanks for the comments. I'm almost positive (it was awhile ago) that the advanced notes were confirmed with Japanese speakers, but I'd love to improve them if possible.
1. For those (I'm guessing it'd be easiest to ask your gf?) that say たい is fine for the third person, what do they think about the other sentence on there, the おとうとはカレーをたべたがっています。 ?? Does she/they think one is more formal/casual than the other?
Japanese rules often shift and are largely relaxed in casual conversation, so depending on this investigation, it might be better not to put that they're wrong, but simply that one is more formal/casual than the other.
2. I think this might be the same issue. For those that say it isn't rude, what do they think about コーヒーは、いかがですか？ Do they consider those the same formality? I have a suspicion that no one would say コーヒーをのみたいですか to a boss, for example.
3. Same with this one.
I'd love to improve any materials on the site that need it, so your help is very much appreciated. In addition to the material you've already given, see if you can find out what those people think when comparing the 'incorrect' sentences with the ones that follow them.
Neither person said that 弟はカレーを食べたい was wrong, but the first one said that the most common uses did not include it. I think it's because when you say "my brother wants curry", you don't know that for a fact unless you have some information (noticing his condition, he said so, etc) suggesting as much. Because of that, you don't usually say 弟はカレーをたべたい without some more information describing how you know that information, which is where よう, みたい, or がっている comes in.
With first person, though, you can confidently say that you want to do something. Hope this makes sense.
2. The explanation needs to be adjusted to say that it *can* be rude depending on the situation. Among friends, it's definitely ok, but if you were, for example, a waiter/waitress, you'd definitely not use that. With the いかが version, you're safe anytime, but it might be a bit formal if you're with good friends.
3. Didn't check on this one yet.
I'm going to go ahead and update the advanced notes a bit to reflect this new info.
Ah, I forgot to mention: those original advanced notes came from a Japanese language teacher. I'd guess that a teacher probably sticks closer to the accepted rules than most, as it can be dangerous for a student to learn the 'everyday' way of saying something without first learning the polite way and, more importantly, when each should be used.
Hey, just noticed something. I'm just being nit-picky, but in this model sentence: そつ業したら、日本でしゅうしょくしたいです。"しゅうしょく" is highlighted, but it isn't necessarily the part of the word being conjugated. Perhaps したい should be highlighted along with the word, or left by itself? :)
It's possible both ways.
I don't have a great grasp on the difference between the two forms myself, but what I've been told is that 「たがっている」 is for immediate desires or for desires that spanned a finite time period in the past, while 「たがる」 is for customary desires. For example:
今、彼はリンゴを食べたがっている。 --- Right now, he is wanting to eat an apple.
先週, 彼は図書館に行きたがっていなかった。 --- Last week, he wasn’t wanting to to go the library.
若い頃、彼は大学に入りたがっていた。 --- When he was young, he was wanting to go to college.
彼は毎日泳ぎたがる。 --- He wants to swim everyday.
時々彼は漫画を読みたがる。 --- He sometimes wants to read manga.
今日彼はチェスをしたがらない。 --- He doesn’t want to play chess today.
Note that while the last sentence seems like it is an immediate (lack of a) desire, you can still use 「たがる」 because you are implying that [i]not[/i] playing chess is a deviation from a customary action. In other words, it is simply the negative form of a habitual action. I believe that you could also 「たがっている」 for that particular sentence, though.
This isn't a perfect explanation and I'm pretty sure that to a Japanese native there is a little more difference in nuance between the forms, but maybe this will give you a starting point.
The reason you wouldn't really ask someone outside your immediate friend circle 食べたい？ or 飲みたい? and so forth is because it sounds (also obviously 9 times out of 10 unintentionally) like you're figuratively dangling it in front of them just outside of their reach. (This came up a few weeks ago in Japanese class and that's pretty much a direct quote from my teacher.)
It would be safer to stick with just 食べる？/食べますか or 飲む？/飲みますか？ when you want to ask what people close to you want and for older people, your boss etc. いかがでしょうか？
Having said that, たい？ is still occassionally used in the "rude" way, especially by young people.
Thank you for the replies everyone! I think it makes more sense now.
Before reading this I had been using the たい form when asking people what they wanted. No one ever corrected me though, so I just kept using it. Now I know the proper way, thank you again!
I have one more question though. Can you use 何 safely when asking someone what they want? Can you ask 何を食べたいですか？ Would that be considered rude?
If you're with a friend at a restaurant it's not weird to ask 何食べたい？ but it might be better to use 何食べる？ or even 何にする？
The same goes for 何を食べたいですか？ It would still be more polite to ask 何を食べますか？ ...and let's not get into Keigo... :o
I don't think this has been mentioned before, so if it has been, I apologize.
I have been told by many of my Japanese teachers and friends that ~たい on its own is quite informal and sounds childish. For example, unless you are with friends or family, ケーキをたべたい sounds too whiny and direct.
It is better in most situations to combine ~たい with something else, so that your wants are being stated in a less direct manner. I have been told to use something like ケーキを食べたいと思います, for example.
8 years ago
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