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TitleJapanese Handbook
TagsStress (Linguistics) Japanese Language Syllable Preposition And Postposition English Language
File Size27.1 MB
Total Pages592
Document Text Contents
Page 296

280 SYNTAX.

a capital R and a capital S, and unconsciously slides into

regarding them as being, in some sort, actual things, even

individualities capable of aspirations, aims, and conquests,
of teaching and sustaining their devotees, of revenging

themselves on those who slight them, etc., etc. Such

mythology (for mythology it is, albeit those who have been

reared under the exclusive influence of European modes of

expression may not at first recognise it as such) is utterly alien

to the matter-of-fact Far-Eastern mind. During the last few

years, the study of English, and the translation into Japanese
of great numbers of English and other European books,
have indeed resulted in the occasional adoption by public

speakers of such expressions as Rekishi ga watakushi-domo ni

wo os 7rieru, a literal rendering of our phrase
"
History

teaches us that
"

But such " Europeanisms
"

are

quite unidiomatic, and would scarcely be comprehended by

any Japanese save those who have themselves at least a

tincture of Western learning.

^f 442. Languages differ greatly in the degree of integration

of their sentences. For instance, Chinese and Pidjin-

English simply put assertions side by side, like stones

without cement, as
" He bad man. My no like he." Our

more synthetic English would generally subordinate one

assertion to the other, coupling them thus :
" I don't like

him, BECAUSE he is a bad man" Now one of the most
essential characteristics of the Japanese language is the

extreme degree to which it pushes the synthetic tendency
in the structure of sentences. Japanese always tries to

incorporate the whole of a statement, however complex it

may be and however numerous its parts, within the limits

of a single sentence, whose members are all mutually

inter-dependent. In fact the normal Japanese sentence is

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