Japanese Study Materials: 受身の形 ・ Passive Form

Japanese Study Materials: 受身の形 ・ Passive Form
受身の形 ・ Passive Form

In Japanese you can express the idea of something (verb) is being done to someone (object) by using the passive form verb conjugation. While I was studying this form I read online that this verb conjugation also tends to sound more polite. Godan (Group I) verbs and ichidan (Group II) verbs both have their own conjugation rules.

ごだん動詞 Godan Verbs

Start with a plain form verb (ふつう形), remove the [u] ending sound and replace it with the [a] ending sound hiragana, and then add  れます or れる. All plain form verbs end in the [u] column on the hiragana chart, so you can just move up two rows to find the corresponding [a] ending sound. You can also start in the polite/masu form (ます形) by cutting off the ます and changing the [i] ending sound hiragana to the [a] ending sound hiragana.

Examples ・例えば

  • (I) say/tell (it) → (I) am told (it)言う → 言われる
  • (I) read (the book)  → (the book) is read読む → 読まれる
  • (I) sell (it)  → (it) is being sold売る → 売られる
いちだん動詞 Ichidan Verbs

For this verb group you should start by finding the verb root, or verb stem. You can find the verb root by first starting in the polite/masu form (ます形 ). The verb stem is just the polite/masu form (ます形 ) without the ます. Once you’ve found the verb root all you need to do is add られます or られる.

Examples ・例えば

  • (I) see (it) → (it) is seen見る → 見られる
  • (I) eat (it) → (it) is eaten食べる → 食べられる
  • (I) compliment; praise (it/him/her)  → (it/he/she) is getting a compliment; being praised褒める → 褒められる
Irregular Verbs

Irregular verbs are just that — irregular. They don’t have any set rules. Fortunately there aren’t a whole lot of them. The most common are する・to do, and 来る・to come. 

Examples ・例えば

  • (I) do (it)  → (it) is being doneする・します → される・されます
  • (I) come (to it) → (it) is coming来る・来ます → 来られる・来られます
Quick Reference Sheet
Passive Form PDF Download

If you see a mistake please correct me! You can leave your correction in the comments below. I am not a native speaker. I just have a love of the language and enjoy studying it. I made these study materials in order to help my learning process. I am posting them online in hopes that it can help others too. Let’s learn Japanese together! 🙂