EasyJapaneseE@gmail.com

~じゃない? (colloquial)

~じゃない? (colloquial)

Today’s Question

You cooked something for the first time and your wife said, まあ、おいしいじゃない?
Will you be happy?

Today’s Grammar Point: ~じゃない? (colloquial)

Connection

verb: [plain form (non-past/past, affirmative/negative)] (+ ん) + じゃない?
いadjective: [plain form (non-past/past, affirmative/negative)] (+ ん) + じゃない?
なadjective: [stem] (+ なん) + じゃない?/ [stem じゃない/だった/じゃなかった] (+ ん) + じゃない?
noun: [noun] (+ なん) + じゃない?/ [noun じゃない/だった/じゃなかった] (+ ん) + じゃない?

Meaning

  1. expressing your guess (“perhaps…?”)
  2. asking for confirmation
  3. expressing surprise or criticism

Note

This sentence pattern is different from negative statements like ”わたしは学生じゃない。 (I’m not a student.)” and that is the reason why it is followed by a question mark (“?”). This ~じゃない? is mainly used in casual conversations and have an upward intonation. As you cannot show the intonation in writing, many people will use a question mark when writing this down but please note a question mark is not part of official Japanese punctuation.

Examples

  1. guessing

明日は雨なんじゃない?
I bet it will rain tomorrow.

たろうさんなら着物きものるんじゃない?
If you are talking about Taro, he may come in Kimono.

ちょっとんでいるようだけど、先生におこられたんじゃない?
He looks a bit down. Perhaps he got told off by his teacher?

あの人ちょっとおかしいんじゃない?
Perhaps he’s a bit strange?

試験しけんむずかしかったんじゃない?
Perhaps, the exam was hard?

  1. asking for confirmation

あそこにいるのは先生じゃない?
Isn’t the person over there our teacher?

このおみせって有名ゆうめいじゃない?
Isn’t this shop famous?

花子はなこさんはとてもきれいじゃない?
Hanako is very pretty, isn’t she?

明日あしたあさはやいんじゃないの?
You have an early start tomorrow morning, don’t you?

  1. express surprise or criticism

すごく上手じょうずじゃない?
Wow, you are so good!

きゅうまったら、あぶないじゃない?をつけてよ。
It’s dangerous if you stop suddenly! Be careful!

Answer to Today’s Question

おいしいじゃない? here is an expression of surprise, so the whole thing is like: “Wow, it’s surprisingly delicious!” You could be happy for her saying it’s delicious, but you could be upset for the “surprisingly” bit. You feel happy or not is up to you!

The important thing here is the negative of おいしい is おいしくない. Using じゃない with an いadjective is not making it negative but adding a different meaning (here it is a “surprise”) to it.

If you liked this post, please share it with your friends via your social media accounts. Your support will be appreciated!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

%d bloggers like this: