時計を無くす v 時計を無くしてしまう v 時計を無くしてしまったん

English translation: lose, will lose / (have lost), will have lost / have (already) lost, had (already) lost

GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
Japanese term or phrase:なくす / なくしてしまう / なくしてしまったん
English translation:lose, will lose / (have lost), will have lost / have (already) lost, had (already) lost
Entered by: jsl (X)

00:12 Jan 28, 2003
Japanese to English translations [Non-PRO]
Japanese term or phrase: 時計を無くす v 時計を無くしてしまう v 時計を無くしてしまったん
I am trying to understand the nuances between the above phrases and how and when Japanese speakers would chose to use each of them.
Peter Coles
Local time: 09:10
下記参照
Explanation:
無くす: lose or will lose
無くしてしまう: have lost or will have lost
無くしてしまった: have (already) lost or had (already) lost

The basic form, "nakusu", has a non-future/non-past meaning of "losing". However, as the present forms of English verbs can express the near future events (i.e., "He comes to Tokyo tomorrow"), that of Japanese verbs can also refer to such events.

e.g.) ポケットに入れていたら、時計をなくしますよ (If you put it in your pocket, you (will eventually) lose your watch. -- kind of warning, e.g., from your mother)

"te shimau", on the other hand, is one of two aspectual expressions in Japanese. The other one is "te iru". The aspect refers to the way that a certain activity is conveyed. "te shimau" refers to the perfective aspect (i.e., the completion of action), which is parallel to "have + part participle" in English, whereas "te iru" refers to the continuative aspect (i.e., the continuation of action or state), which is close to "be + doing" in English. "te shimau" does not have a temporal feature, so this can be translated as "have lost" or "will have lost", the latter of which is one of the examples of "near future meaning".

So, "時計をなくしてしまう" is "have lost a watch", but this specific expression often refers to a possible future event. "ごはんを食べてしまう" is "have eaten a meal", and this usually means this only. So, the meaning of "te shimau" is pretty much decided by what kind of vert you are going to use. I mean, this meaning difference is determined by the type of verb. "食べる" can be continued as long as you can, but the act of "なくす" cannot be continued; rather, it is almost instantaneous. This difference in verb type yields the difference in the meaning of "te shimau".

無くしてしまった is expressed either by "have lost" or "had lost", and this difference is determined in the actual context, since Japanse uses "ta" for both past tense and perfective aspect. So, it may be "present perfect", or it may be "past perfect".

"te shimatta" may involve a kind of denunciation. If you just want to talk about the event of losing your watch, you may use "なくした", but, if you use "なくしてしまった", you may be still regretting that you have lost your watch, and you may be blaming yourself.

This difference is very difficult for non-native speakers of Japanese to understand, and we can see some errors even among very fluent non-natives. This is just an explanation, and you will learn the difference according as you encounter these expressions. Good luck.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-01-28 05:13:04 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

More comments on ¥"てしまう¥":

I may have to revise the meaning of ¥"時計をなくしてしまう¥", since it actually does not mean ¥"have lost a watch¥". As I explained above, this is because of the type of verbs, whether the action is condinued or not. For ¥"時計をなくしてしまう¥", specifically, it would mean ¥"will lose a watch¥" or ¥"will have lost a watch¥".

However, *as a generalization*, I would say that the general meaning of ¥"... てしまう¥" is ¥"have + past participle¥". This is true of the vast majority of verbs whose action can be continued, such as ¥"(手紙を) 書いてしまう¥" (have written a letter), ¥"(その映画を) 観てしまう¥" (have seen that movie), ¥"(雑誌を) 読んでしまう¥" (have read the magazine), ¥"(バーンスタインの CD を) 聴いてしまう¥" (have listened to Bernstein¥'s CD), and so on. These meanings are crystal clear and not ambiguous.
Selected response from:

jsl (X)
Local time: 17:10
Grading comment
ありがとう to Nobou-san for the speed of your response and to Philip for your correct realisation that it was the socio-linguistic usage that I seeking to understand.

But どうもありがとうございます to Daisuke-san. This was indeed a "very instructive" answer and I learnt far more from it than I could ever have expected when I placed the question.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
4 +2下記参照
jsl (X)
5To lose a watch, to have a watch lost, to have had a watch lost
Nobuo Kawamura
3lose a watch / [go and] lose a watch
Philip Ronan


  

Answers


9 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
To lose a watch, to have a watch lost, to have had a watch lost


Explanation:
The basic difference lies in the mode of time. You are right. There are in fact subtle differences in nuance depending on the situation, which is hard to generalize.


Nobuo Kawamura
Japan
Local time: 17:10
Native speaker of: Native in JapaneseJapanese
PRO pts in pair: 483
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

40 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +2
下記参照


Explanation:
無くす: lose or will lose
無くしてしまう: have lost or will have lost
無くしてしまった: have (already) lost or had (already) lost

The basic form, "nakusu", has a non-future/non-past meaning of "losing". However, as the present forms of English verbs can express the near future events (i.e., "He comes to Tokyo tomorrow"), that of Japanese verbs can also refer to such events.

e.g.) ポケットに入れていたら、時計をなくしますよ (If you put it in your pocket, you (will eventually) lose your watch. -- kind of warning, e.g., from your mother)

"te shimau", on the other hand, is one of two aspectual expressions in Japanese. The other one is "te iru". The aspect refers to the way that a certain activity is conveyed. "te shimau" refers to the perfective aspect (i.e., the completion of action), which is parallel to "have + part participle" in English, whereas "te iru" refers to the continuative aspect (i.e., the continuation of action or state), which is close to "be + doing" in English. "te shimau" does not have a temporal feature, so this can be translated as "have lost" or "will have lost", the latter of which is one of the examples of "near future meaning".

So, "時計をなくしてしまう" is "have lost a watch", but this specific expression often refers to a possible future event. "ごはんを食べてしまう" is "have eaten a meal", and this usually means this only. So, the meaning of "te shimau" is pretty much decided by what kind of vert you are going to use. I mean, this meaning difference is determined by the type of verb. "食べる" can be continued as long as you can, but the act of "なくす" cannot be continued; rather, it is almost instantaneous. This difference in verb type yields the difference in the meaning of "te shimau".

無くしてしまった is expressed either by "have lost" or "had lost", and this difference is determined in the actual context, since Japanse uses "ta" for both past tense and perfective aspect. So, it may be "present perfect", or it may be "past perfect".

"te shimatta" may involve a kind of denunciation. If you just want to talk about the event of losing your watch, you may use "なくした", but, if you use "なくしてしまった", you may be still regretting that you have lost your watch, and you may be blaming yourself.

This difference is very difficult for non-native speakers of Japanese to understand, and we can see some errors even among very fluent non-natives. This is just an explanation, and you will learn the difference according as you encounter these expressions. Good luck.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-01-28 05:13:04 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

More comments on ¥"てしまう¥":

I may have to revise the meaning of ¥"時計をなくしてしまう¥", since it actually does not mean ¥"have lost a watch¥". As I explained above, this is because of the type of verbs, whether the action is condinued or not. For ¥"時計をなくしてしまう¥", specifically, it would mean ¥"will lose a watch¥" or ¥"will have lost a watch¥".

However, *as a generalization*, I would say that the general meaning of ¥"... てしまう¥" is ¥"have + past participle¥". This is true of the vast majority of verbs whose action can be continued, such as ¥"(手紙を) 書いてしまう¥" (have written a letter), ¥"(その映画を) 観てしまう¥" (have seen that movie), ¥"(雑誌を) 読んでしまう¥" (have read the magazine), ¥"(バーンスタインの CD を) 聴いてしまう¥" (have listened to Bernstein¥'s CD), and so on. These meanings are crystal clear and not ambiguous.


jsl (X)
Local time: 17:10
PRO pts in pair: 1098
Grading comment
ありがとう to Nobou-san for the speed of your response and to Philip for your correct realisation that it was the socio-linguistic usage that I seeking to understand.

But どうもありがとうございます to Daisuke-san. This was indeed a "very instructive" answer and I learnt far more from it than I could ever have expected when I placed the question.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Shinya Ono: Very instructive!
3 hrs
  -> Thanks. From the linguistic and teaching experience.

agree  amit vats
5 hrs
  -> thanks
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

9 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
lose a watch / [go and] lose a watch


Explanation:
Japanese speakers often use −てしまった or −ちゃった to indicate regret or annoyance at something that has happened.

So you could translate 時計を無くした and 時計を無くしてしまった as "I lost my watch" and "I've gone and lost my watch" (or "I've lost my damn watch").

Hope this helps

Philip Ronan
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:10
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 170
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