Phrasing questions

When we want to talk about a question in a larger sentence, we can treat the sentence as a phrase by using the 「か」 question marker.


  1. 田中さんはいつ来る、分かりますか。
    Do (you) know when Tanaka-san is coming?
  2. 来年、日本に留学しに行く、悩んでいる。
    (I’m) agonizing whether I should go to Japan next year for study abroad.

When it’s a yes/no question, you can append an optional 「どうか」 to represent the other choice.


  1. 悩む 【なや・む】 – to be troubled over something, to agonize over a decision
  2. 留学 【りゅう・がく】 – study abroad
  1. 田中さんは、明日来るかどうか、分かりますか。
    Do (you) know whether Tanaka-san is coming tomorrow or not?
  2. 来年、日本に留学しに行くかどうか、悩んでいる。
    (I’m) agonizing whether I should go to Japan next year for study abroad or not.
  3. 日本に行きたいかどうか、分かりません。
    Whether (I) want to go to Japan or not, (I) don’t know.

Comic 12 – 「彼女」の意味

  1. 彼女 【かの・じょ】 – she; girlfriend
  2. ガールフレンド – girlfriend
  3. 両方 【りょう・ほう】 – both sides
  4. 意味 【い・み】 – meaning
  5. 持つ 【も・つ】(u-verb) – to hold
  6. 余計 【よ・けい】 (na-adj) – too much, unnecessary, excess
  7. 紛らわしい 【まぎ・らわしい】 (i-adj) confusing, misleading
  8. コンテキスト – context
  9. 大体 【だい・たい】 – general; substantially
  10. 分かる 【わ・かる】 (u-verb) – to understand
  11. それに – besides; moreover
  12. どっち – which (way)
  13. 相手 【あい・て】 – other party
  14. 聞く 【き・く】 (u-verb) – to ask; to listen
  15. 確認 【かく・にん】 – confirmation
  16. 出来る 【で・き・る】 (ru-verb) – to be able to do
  17. そう – (things are) that way
  18. そんな – that sort of
  19. 質問 【しつ・もん】 – question
  20. じゃ – short for では (informal)
  21. 結局 【けっ・きょく】 – eventually; in the end

John: 彼女 holds both meaning of “she” and “girlfriend” so (it’s) unnecessarily confusing.

Alice: Wouldn’t (you) mostly understand by context? Moreover, if (you) don’t understand, (you) can confirm by asking the other (person) which (it is), right?

John: That’s so, isn’t it? If (I) ask is she/girlfriend she/girlfriend, (I) will understand, won’t (I)?

Alice: By that kind of question, (you) won’t know which is which in the end, right?

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