Look at any kind of Japanese sentence and also you"ll view a number of characters grounding in between and after every the "proper words," the nouns, adjectives and also verbs. These room particles. Their project is to express the partnership of the various words in the sentence, or set a tone because that the sentence as a whole. One an especially slippery one is the Japanese bit kana かな().

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かな (Particle) (at sentence end) i wonder; need to I?; is it?; ns wish that; i hope that

It"s in the same group as よ, か, and other sentence-ender particles. As I"ve said, the affects the tone of the sentence. But while よ (assertion) and か (question) are reasonably simple, かな has a well-off history, tons of different meanings, and a pair of variations. If girlfriend can obtain to recognize it, you"ll have a useful and also nuanced device for her Japanese in the future.

Those of girlfriend who have actually come across かな probably had actually it defined as "I wonder," or indigenous to that effect. As in:

あれは犬かな。I wonder if that is a dog.

This isn"t have to wrong, however there space so many more shades of meaning, as well as different contexts, that have the right to be used. First, though, let"s acquire the hang of what that is we"re writing and saying.

Grammar that the Japanese bit かな interpretations of the Japanese particle かな

Forms and also Etymology

I"ve currently shown friend かな"s most typical form, which is… かな. It"s that simple. Some imply かな is a combination of two existing particles: か and な.

か turns a sentence right into a question, and な is supplied like the Japanese fragment ね (rhetorical question) v a bit more emphasis, and more casually. な is kind of choose saying "Huh, is that so?" if な is the "huh." Plonk lock together, and also you get the questioning of か through the emotion and implied doubt and also consideration of な, bring about a basic sense the "wonder."

かな does have actually a kanji form too, i beg your pardon is 哉(かな). If you have the right to write it in kanji in a common context, it"s much much more common to use this form in poetry, which we"ll acquire to below. If you"re creating it in a non-poetic context, hiragana かな is fine.

There"s likewise a feminine form of かな, because that those who prefer to usage such things. That type is かしら, and derives indigenous the same か bit with one odd form of the verb 知る(し ), to know. Literally, it can be interpreted as "I don"t know whether…," but it has the same meaning as かな nowadays. If かな isn"t particularly manly word, you"re i can not qualify to hear a man use かしら. It"s more a instance of what one human being wouldn"t use, quite than what castle would.

かな is a mix of 2 existing particles: か and also な.

It"s likewise important to keep in mind that かな is considered casual particle. Because that a officially equivalent, でしょうか is probably closest, yet comes v slightly different meanings and also usage. This ascendancy isn"t one that"s adhered to strongly, yet it"s precious bearing in mental if you occur to be invited to tea with the emperor.

One critical thing: you"ll periodically see and also hear the あ sound ~ above the finish lengthened. This is normally used for emphasis. If you desire to write this, you can choose either かなあ or かなぁ, and also if you desire to speak it then just say it!

Grammar that the Japanese bit かな

With technical stuff out of the way, let"s obtain to the really crucial stuff: exactly how to usage かな. Before we start on the various meanings, we"ll go v the grammar surrounding かな, so your sentences deserve to be grammar beautiful as well as meaningful.

Using かな through Verbs

The good news is, the grammar of かな is simple. Like many other sentence-ender particles, you regularly simply slap かな on the finish of a sentence without an altering much at all. Since it"s a casual Japanese particle, you"ll generally want to usage it v plain-form verbs:

Using かな with Nouns

In most casual situations, かな is about as simple with nouns together it is v verbs. Plonk the on the end:

For times once the it is too dirty is important, you can use だった prior to かな. World will often include の between the two, which sound a bit an ext natural.

Once you acquire away indigenous the casual use, however, points get more complicated. かな deserve to still be supplied with polite endings, like です. When doing so, it"s typical to change the な right into ね, together in:

In many casual situations, かな is around as straightforward with nouns as it is with verbs. Simply plonk it on the end.

Be warned: this might be more formal, however that doesn"t do it professional-level formal. It"s much more of an in-between, however still not perfect for business use. For example:

While you can use ~ですかな, it"s usually only said by old male characters in anime or games. If you"re one old man, or want to act like one, this could be useful, but by and large it"s not used.

Another means you could achieve the same result is by making use of the officially form, ~でしょうか. This replaces the ~です (or equivalent) ~ above the end, and also has generally the same definition as かな but without the casual feel.

In general, though, you"ll want to perform away through です or でしょう and also just pole かな appropriate at the end, particularly if it"s in the current tense. For added effect, friend can attract out the あ sound at the end, favor so:

Don"t problem if all the looks complicated. Lot of the difficulty comes when trying to make かな behave favor a officially particle, as soon as in truth it isn"t one anyway. Most of the time, friend won"t need to concern too much around it.

Using かな with い Adjectives

Adjectives are simple too. As with most casual sentences, if you have actually an い adjective, friend don"t require anything ~ above the end, so just stick かな there and also you"re done:

Using かな with な Adjectives

For な adjectives, add a の ~ the な if you want to finish with that adjective, like:

Because な adjective are sort of favor nouns, you deserve to use few of the creates mentioned in the noun section, like ですかね and でしょうか v them together well. Likewise like nouns, it"s less complicated and much more common to go without and also just put かな in ~ the end.

Grammar usage Table

As you deserve to see, the actual usage of かな isn"t hideously complicated. There space a few rules you need to learn, but it"s comparable to using any other sentence-ender particle. Here"s a comfortable table you have the right to use to examine at a glance if you"re making use of it right, with any kind of kind that sentence.

kind Construction instance 1 instance 2
Verbs plain kind verb + かな 読む(よ )かな 降った(ふ )かな
Nouns noun + かな 犬(いぬ)かな 人間(にんげん)かな
Nouns noun + です + かね 詩(うた)ですかね 写真(しゃしん)ですかね
Nouns noun + でしょうか 手袋(てぶくろ)でしょうか 宇宙人(うちゅうじん)でしょうか
い Adjectives い adjective + かな 寒い(さむ )かな 美味しい(おい )かな
な Adjectives な adjective + の + かな きれいなのかな 静か(しず )なのかな
な Adjectives な adjective + な + の + かな 有名(ゆうめい)なのかな 自由(じゆう)なのかな

Meanings that the Japanese particle かな

Now the you know how to use かな, we deserve to look at when and also why you"ll be utilizing it. The examples listed below are in no specific order, so usage your judgement to work the meaning. There"s a lot the potential overlap too, so it"s be best to see these together the boundaries of what かな might mean, quite than totally separate senses that the word. That"s why us teach Japanese particles v examples. Lots and lots the examples.

I wonder…

どうしてあんなひどいことしちゃったのかな。 ns wonder why i did such a devastating thing.

Students wanting come know how to say "I wonder" in Japanese find the answer quickly in the bit かな. This is the an interpretation I"ve been utilizing for every previous examples, and probably the one that most civilization will know. It"s likewise easy to spot, together it"ll come after a basic statement. Unfortunately, just like in English, it deserve to either imply the human being speaking knows or has consisted of their mind, or they haven"t. You deserve to use this sense when talking to someone else, but it"s often characterized as talking to yourself out loud.

The final instance is a bit of an outlier: it shows you can also use かな come express regret, as though you to be questioning yourself after the occasion had happened.

Expressing Doubt and Asking Advice

This is similar to "wondering," but an ext commonly supplied with one assertion-type sentence. It"s likewise used more when talk to who else, fairly than come yourself. As such, the can often be translated like a question, asking someone"s advice or opinion. There"s a lot of overlap through the above example, but you have the right to see exactly how context will offer these a different meaning.

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Gently giving an Opinion

You have the right to use かな to sell an opinion in a tenderness or ethereal way, too. This deserve to have the sense of "I don"t know whether you have to do that," where you"re technically reflecting doubt yet really offering your opinion. You can use the sentence above, but direct lock at an additional person, quite than yourself. These can be analyzed as rhetorical questions, or together "I wonder" or "I don"t know…" in English, though none of these are particularly literal. Lot like in English, this is often a roundabout way of disagreeing v someone. This is usual in speech, and also as together intonation is important! just like there are plenty of ways of saying "I suppose," かな can be bring away differently depending on how you say it.