Japanese Word Order

This is a very quick introduction to the word order of the Japanese language before we jump into the Harry Potter book.

Japanese is typologically classified as an SOV (Subject + Oject + Verb) language, whereas English is classified as SVO.

Subject
(topic)

Location

Direct Object

Verb (transitive)

スミスさん
Sumisu-san

wa
日本
Nihon

de
日本語
Nihongo

o
勉強している
benkyōshite iru.
(Mr. Smith is studying Japanese in Japan.)

The Location and Direct Object can be switched, but the Subject (topic) and the Verb must normally be in sentence-initial and sentence-final positions, respectively.

Soure: A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar

I suggest you to buy this dictionary as it offers comprehensive discussion and a lot of examples on Japanese grammar.
Or you can look around for an online copy for a quick peek of the book.

One Response to Japanese Word Order

  1. […] My previous post quickly covers the Subject-Object-Verb order of the Japanese language. […]

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