は or わ

Flavio--6 July 10, 2014, 7:20 pm
こんにちは、well my question is following

why is in こんにちは the Hiragana HA at the end?
Shouldn't it be a WA according to the pronunciation?
Theres the same thing in many othere sentenceses and it just confuses me-

thanks!
は or わ
keiko-rocket-japanese-tutor July 10, 2014, 11:31 pm
Hi Flavio 6,

"は" when it is a particle is pronounced WA and that is why in "こんにちは"it is spelled "は"but is pronounced WA because it is a particle in "こんにちは". You need to know the difference between "は" used in a word and is a part of the word (eg.はな(flower) はる(spring-season) はしる(run)) pronounced HA Vs. when it is the particle "は"pronouced WA.

In "こんにちは", it is the particle "は"(pronounced WA) here because...
"こんにちは"is thought to have derived from longer sentences used for greetings such as "こんにちは(wa)ごきげんいかがですか。" (konnnichi(this day/today) WA(particle) gokigen ikaga desuka(how are you?)=how are you today?).
or "こんにちはよいおてんきです。" (This day/today is a fine day(talking about weather))...Read More
Hi Flavio 6,

"は" when it is a particle is pronounced WA and that is why in "こんにちは"it is spelled "は"but is pronounced WA because it is a particle in "こんにちは". You need to know the difference between "は" used in a word and is a part of the word (eg.はな(flower) はる(spring-season) はしる(run)) pronounced HA Vs. when it is the particle "は"pronouced WA.

In "こんにちは", it is the particle "は"(pronounced WA) here because...
"こんにちは"is thought to have derived from longer sentences used for greetings such as "こんにちは(wa)ごきげんいかがですか。" (konnnichi(this day/today) WA(particle) gokigen ikaga desuka(how are you?)=how are you today?).
or "こんにちはよいおてんきです。" (This day/today is a fine day(talking about weather)). The part following after こんにちはgot abbreviated and just became "こんにちは".

So there are actually two parts to こんにちは. The 今日(this day/today) and the particle はWA.

These days though people write "こんにちわ" as well and is accepted but こんにちはis actually more correct so you should use this one!

I hope this explains.
は or わ
Flavio--6 July 11, 2014, 4:21 pm
Sorry if you actually explained this: (English isn't my mother tongue either)

Well for what is that particle in こんにちは or おなまえはなんですか?

I don't even know what particles are in german (my best known language)

Well there will be a problem to identify single words with HA versus just the "fake HA -> WA"..

Also right know i just know Hiragana, while reading sentences I'm pretty slow... Is this going to increase with a lot more practice, or will i always be thinking: "what was this hiragana?? Is this NA or NE .. etc"

thanks
は or わ
keiko-rocket-japanese-tutor July 15, 2014, 7:42 am
Hi Flavio 6,

Particles (eg.は,が,の,へ,で etc. there are many more) in Japanese, they each have a different function to indicate the relations between words. Some of them have the same function as prepositions in English but others just have other meanings which you just have to learn.

は is a TOPIC MARKER, its function is to indicate the topic in a sentence. Eg. Flavio 6はにほんごをべんきょうしています。(Flavio 6 wa nihongo wo benkyou shiteimasu. / Flavio 6 is studying Japanese). The は after Flavio 6 makes Flavio 6 the topic of the sentence.

The use of はin こんにちは is a bit of a special case so take a look at other sentences for the use of the particle は and I think you will understand...Read More
Hi Flavio 6,

Particles (eg.は,が,の,へ,で etc. there are many more) in Japanese, they each have a different function to indicate the relations between words. Some of them have the same function as prepositions in English but others just have other meanings which you just have to learn.

は is a TOPIC MARKER, its function is to indicate the topic in a sentence. Eg. Flavio 6はにほんごをべんきょうしています。(Flavio 6 wa nihongo wo benkyou shiteimasu. / Flavio 6 is studying Japanese). The は after Flavio 6 makes Flavio 6 the topic of the sentence.

The use of はin こんにちは is a bit of a special case so take a look at other sentences for the use of the particle は and I think you will understand.

In おなまえはなんですか, the は(wa) makes the おなまえ(name) the topic of the sentence.
And the answer to the Q could be: わたしのなまえはFlavio 6です(here の is another particle which indicates possession (わたし(I)+の(posession) = my) and は,the topic marker. "My name is Flavio 6". Your name is made the topic of the sentence by the use of は.

Another eg. まで (up to/as far as)
このでんしゃはしぶやまでいきます。
(Kono densya wa Shibuya made ikimasu)
This train(the topic) goes as far as Shibuya.

The German language probably has expressions that serve a similar function. I think eg. eigentlich, ....( )er als ....

As you get familiar with Japanese and how Japanese sentences are structured, you will start to be able to distinguish particles from words. The more words/vocabulary you learn the easier it will be for you to see single words in a sentence.

That's a great start that you already know Hiragana. It will get easier with practice and time. I think it takes time in the beginning as Hiraganas just look like symbols to you but after a while especially after you know more vocabulary they will have more meaning to you and I'm sure they will become more automatic. Good luck!
は or わ
Flavio--6 July 15, 2014, 5:08 pm
こんばんはケイコ-さん。

Well that made all the things a lot clearer!

I didn't really know what particle's are.. but with your explanation i think i can different between particles and parts of words. Especially the part about learning new vocab's is good, because jeah i see it right know. Everytime i see はじめまして。 i already know that this is gonna be a "HA".

And also the "NO" is good to know. Are more of these also explained during the next grammer lessons of Rocketjapanese Language&Culture? Or is this never mentioned?

Thank's a lot, you made things a lot easier for me!
は or わ
keiko-rocket-japanese-tutor July 18, 2014, 10:41 am
Hi Flavio 6,

I'm glad it's starting to make sense to you now.

Yes it takes time to get used to the は(ha) and the は(wa) but after a while you will find it easier to tell which is which.

There are no specific pages for the use of different particles but throughout this whole course, under each topic you will find repeated phrases using the same particle enough times that hopefully after practise you will start to pick up the use/function of the particle used but people who like to have things explained to them and know how it really works might need to observe more carefully by themselves eg. what the 'NO' does to the two words that are joined together.

Good luck, have fun with it!
は or わ

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