Sent from my iPad On 12 Feb 2014, at 08:54, Eugene Oh <[log in to unmask]> wrote: >> On 11 Feb 2014, at 09:45, Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets <[log in to unmask]> wrote: >> >> On 11 February 2014 10:17, Douglas Koller <[log in to unmask]> wrote: >> >> >>>>>> Ame ga fureba/futtara, pikunikku ni ikimasen (desyoo). If it rains, >>> we're >>>>>> not going on a picnic. >>> >>>>>> Didn't study formally and don't know how the natives analyze it >>>>>> (conditional?). Wouldn't call it a gerund, but is it finite? "Ame ga >>>>>> fureba" is not a complete sentence any more than "When in Rome" is. >>> >>>>> Conditional. Non-finite. There are only two finite forms, the non-past >>> (-u, >>>>> which in modern Japanese has fused with the "modifier" form) and the >>> past >>>>> (-ta). >>> >>>> I have a question about that: given that Japanese verbs don't show any >>> type >>>> of agreement to their arguments, how does one distinguish between >>>> non-finite and finite forms? >>> >>> Hence my question mark. >> Once again, my question was directed at Eugene. Like you, I'd like to know >> when a verb form in Japanese is considered finite or non-finite, and >> whether it even makes sense to talk about non-finite verb forms in Japanese. > > Aren't finite verb forms those that make an independent clause? > > --Ame ga furu. Works.* > --Ame ga futta. Works. > --Ame ga fureba. Not a complete independent clause unless you assume a certain degree of ellipsis > --Ame ga futtara. Same. > --Ame ga futte. Same. > > The attributive form which is identical I acknowledge makes this a little problematic synchronically given you could also say "Ame ga furu hi" which is a noun phrase. But I think we should distinguish the two forms. Isn't "having conquered Gaul" in "Having conquered Gaul, he set about invading Britain" and independent clause? Or is it somehow "part of" "he...Britain"?