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Teach Us, Teacher

TE-form verb + KUDASAI (Lesson 8)

When you ask somebody to do something in Japanese, you say TE-form verbs and then KUDASAI (Please, or I would ask you to). The TE-form verbs are the conjugated form of verbs that end with TE or DE.

For example, when you want to ask others to memorize something, you say the TE-form of the verb, OBOEMASU (to memorize), which is OBOETE, and say KUDASAI. Together, it is OBOETE KUDASAI. Now, let me tell you how you can turn verbs ending with MASU, or MASU-form verbs, into the TE-form, just as we get the TE-form, OBOETE, from the verb OBOEMASU.

The basic pattern is just to change MASU to TE. For an example, a verb meaning "to eat" is TABEMASU. Its TE-form is TABETE. So, TABETE KUDASAI means "Please eat."
"To look at" is MIMASU. Its TE-form is MITE. So, MITE KUDASAI is "Please look at something."
"To do" is SHIMASU. Its TE-form is SHITE. So, SHITE KUDASAI is "Please do something."
"To come" is KIMASU. Its TE-form is KITE. So, KITE KUDASAI means "Please come."

Basically, you can get the TE-form of verbs simply by changing MASU to TE. Isn't that simple? The verbs that take this pattern have the vowel "E" in their syllables just before MASU. They include OBOEMASU (to memorize). They also include some of the verbs that have the vowel "I" in their syllables just before MASU, such as MIMASU (to look at).

About other ways of making TE-form verbs, we'll explain in the next lesson. TE-form verbs may be the first hurdle in learning Japanese. Let's do our best to clear this hurdle.
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