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でも (Even)

でも (Even)

でも (Even) Japanese Grammar Lesson

Grammar Type: Particle

Essential Meaning: Even X

Construction: 

  • Noun + でも
    • E.g. 先生せんせいでも [Even a teacher]
  • Noun + Particle + でも
    • E.g. 先生せんせいとでも [Even with a teacher]

Notes:

  • X + でも basically means “Even X“. でも is comprised of the て-Form of the copula だ plus the particle .
    • E.g. 子供こどもでもかる。[Even a child can understand.]
  • Noun marking particles and drop when でも is present, but other particles (e.g. and から) remain.
  • でも is often idiomatically paired with WH-Question words, as in:
    • だれでも [No matter who / Anyone]
    • なんでも [No matter what it is / Anything]
    • いつでも [No matter when / Any time]
    • どこでも [No matter where / Any place]
    • どれでも [No matter which it is / Whichever]
  • Multiple instances of でも may be used to enumerate a list of でも nouns (i.e. “Even X, and even Y, and even Z“). This usage stems from the presence of in でも).
    • E.g. あのひとさかなでもにくでもべます。[That person can eat even fish and even meat.]
  • Beware of the fact that the particle でも looks identical to the で particle + . The interpretation of whether a usage is でも or で +も depends on context.
    • E.g. 日本にほんでもインフレがおおきな問題もんだいになっています。[Inflation is a big problem in Japan as well.] This is an example of で (Location) because the speaker is saying “In Japan…” rather than “Even Japan…“.
    • E.g. そこはバスでもけますか。[Can you also get there by bus?] This is an example of で (Means / Instrument) because the speaker is asking whether he or she is able to use the bus as a means of transportation to some place.

Example Sentences:

先生せんせいでも間違まちがう。[Even teachers make mistakes.]

わたしむずかしい仕事しごとでもする。[I even do difficult jobs.]

ここからでも富士山ふじさんえる。[You can see Mt. Fuji even from here.]

子供こどもでもそんなことはわかりますよ。[Even children can understand that.]

いしたいんですが、日曜日にちようびでもかまいませんか。[I want to meet with you, but is it all right even on Sunday?]

あのひとさかなでもにくでもべます。[He can eat anything, even fish or meat.]

WILD Examples:

At 1:40, listen for this line: どんな場所ばしょでもまずれる。[No matter what place it is, you’ll probably be able to catch (Koiking).] This is a usage of WH-Question word + でも.
Listen to this line at 1:22: いまでもあなたはわたしひかり [Even now, you are my light]

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