“I’ll Be Back”

Here’s a phrase I randomly saw in a video game: “Kanarazu modotte kuru!!” This roughly means, “I’ll be back!” (though not with the same delivery as the Governator, above.)

For people into kanji, this is kanarazu (必ずかならず) . The kanji is used for many things requiring “certainty”; of these hitsuyou (必要ひつよう) for “absolutely required” (or must-have, as the case may be) is probably the one most people have seen in romaji.

This is a so-called “kun reading,” that is, a native Japanese word associated with a kanji (or Chinese character).

The compound verb is modotte kuru, from modoru (戻るもどる) for “to return” and kuru (来るくる) for “to come.” Fortunately, this is very easy to explain: this means to come back, in English phrasal verb terms.

So literally, “I will come back.”

Figuratively, “I’ll be back.”

This may be a short phrase, but it will strongly challenge early learners due to the presence of a compound verb and “kanarazu” not being one of the earliest things taught. – J

J Sensei

About J Sensei

Blogger, writer, linguist, former Japanese> English translator, rusty in French, experienced in Japanese, fluent English native. Writing for Technorati.com and various blogs. Skype: jeremiah.bourque (messages always welcome). E-mail: [email protected]
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