Wild Nihongo!


あげる Japanese Grammar Lesson

Grammar Type: Group 2 Verb

Essential Meaning: To give


  • Object + を + あげる
    • E.g. ジョンにケーキをあげる。[I give a cake to John.]
    • E.g. クリスにプレゼントをあげた。[I gave a present to Chris.]


  • あげる describes an act of giving in which the speaker (or someone with whom the speaker empathizes) is the one doing the giving. In other words, あげる conveys the idea of “I give X to Y“. Generally speaking, when the speaker is involved in the sentence, the sentence should take his or her viewpoint.
  • Be careful not to mistake あげる for くれる or もらう. くれる describes an act of giving in which the speaker is the indirect object, rather than the subject (e.g. “Chris gives a pen to me”), and もらう describes an act of RECEIVING in which the speaker is the subject (e.g. “I received a pen from Chris”).
  • The humble version of あげる is さしあがる and the casual version is やる. If the speaker gives something to someone of a much higher status (e.g. a boss), さしあがる is appropriate. If the speaker give something to someone / something of a much lower status (e.g. giving food to a dog), やる is appropriate.

Example Sentences:

わたしはクリスにペンをあげる。[I give a pen to Chris.]

ぼくいぬにエサをやった。[I gave food to a dog.]

わたし上司じょうしにプレゼントをさしあがった。[I gave a present to my boss.]

WILD Examples:

At 0:56, listen for this line: ありったけのあいをTo youあげる [I’ll give all of my love love to you.]
At 1:30, listen for this line: Take me, このわたし全部ぜんぶあげたい [Take me, I want to give my everything to you]
Listen to the dialogue beginning at 1:02: そんなにきだとうなら、このほんあげるよ。[I you say you like it that much, I will let you have this book.]

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