Today’s Grammar Point: ~てもみない

~てもみない is an expression to emphasise surprise or unexpectedness. It is usually used in the past tense and that means “one has never thought …” and often accompanied with an adverb like まさか. The verbs we can use in the てform are limited to the ones like おもう (to think), かんがえる (to consider), etc.


  • [てform of limited verbs] + も みない
  • [てform of limited verbs] + も みなかった


I never thought I would be living in Australia when I was a child.

I never thought I would want to eat natto.

I never thought that the company would go bankrupt.

I never thought I would be able to speak English.

I never thought I could make mayonnaise myself.

I never thought of putting mayonnaise in a chocolate cake.

まさか JLPT N1に合格ごうかくするなんて、想像そうぞうしてもみなかった。
=まさか JLPT N1に合格ごうかくするなんて、想像そうぞうだにしなかった。 (I think this is an N1 level sentence)
=まさか JLPT N1に合格ごうかくするなんて、想像そうぞうもしなかった。(this sounds more natural)
I never imagined that I would pass the JLPT N1.

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For more JLPT N3 grammar items, please visit my JLPT N3 Grammar page.

One thought on “~てもみない

  1. Reply
    ~てもみないで | EasyJapaneseE
    9 November 2021 at 8:00 am

    […] looked at ~てもみなかった as an expression for surprise and/or unexpectedness. If that expression is used in the negative […]

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