第135課: Hearsay: ~そうだ & ~らしい

Hearsay, 伝聞, is the topic of this lesson. This should be a lot easier than phrases for expressing similarity.

~そうだ: Attached to the 終止形

終止形+そうだ expresses hearsay. So, with a noun, follow it with だそうだ. Tense is shown before ~そうだ because this usage has no tense: it's only used with て or in the final position. Before we get to any example sentences, we will first look at the conjugation chart below.

 動詞 すそうだ 形容詞 古そうだ 形容動詞 簡単そうだ 名詞 猫そうだ

1. 博士はかせ入院したそうだ。
  I hear that the professor was hospitalized.

Reading Note: The general reading of 博士 is はかせ, but はくし is respectful and is in words such as 博士号はくしごう.  

2. 先生病気だそうです。
    I hear that the teacher is sick.

Part of Speech Note: Remember that 病気 is not an adjective in Japanese! 

3. うわさによれば、二人離婚りこんするそうです。
  Rumor has it that the two are going to get a divorce.

4. 羅生門らしょうもんはいい映画だそうです。
  They say that Rashomon is a good movie.

Culture Note: 羅生門 is a very popular crime scene movie in Japan from the 50s created by the renowned producer 黒澤明くろさわあきら

5. 地震があったそうだ。
  They say there was an earthquake.

6. 天気予報てんきよほうでは今日雨がらないそうです。
   I hear it's not going to rain today with the weather report.

7. 日本語上手じゃないそうです。
  I hear that he's not good at Japanese.

8. 彼はよく勉強するそうです。
  It sounds like he often studies.  

9. 「あの人は子供の欲しいものは何でも買ってやるそうですよ」「よっぽど甘やかしているんでしょう」
  "I hear that that person always buys whatever her kids want" "The kids must be pretty spoiled"

10.  テレビ局が来月からタガログ語の番組を放送するそうです。
       I hear that the TV network will air a Tagalog program starting next month.

~らしい

The auxiliary ~らしい shows speculation based on some sort of foundation such as hearsay. However, it is somewhat of a euphemism for a more direct, declarative statement concerning hearsay, which would be expressed by ~そうだ.

Also, when there is a clearly defined reason or proof for something, you the speaker aren't just making conjecture. Rather, you're taking what you're hearing, seeing, or reading and making a non-intuitive statement.

As far as conjugation goes, it may follow nouns, the stems of 形容動詞, the 終止形 of 形容詞, verbs, and other auxiliary verbs.

 形容詞 高い + らしい →  高いらしい 形容動詞 危険な + らしい → 危険らしい 名詞 ガンらしい

 Example Sentences

11. 日本なかったらしいです。
   He apparently didn't go to Japan.

12. それが原因げんいんらしい。
    That is apparently the cause.    

13. この都市不動産ふどうさんいらしいです。
    The real estate properties in this city seem to be expensive.

14. その幽霊ゆうれいるらしい。
    The house appears to be haunted.

15. 彼女はよく勉強するらしいです。
    She appears to study often.

When the suffix ~らしい attaches to nouns, it makes adjectives to show typicality. It may also follow the stem of adjectives and some adverbs to show that something brings on a certain emotion. As you can see, you must understand that the auxiliary verb and suffix ~らしい's are different. 

16. 彼は子供らしくない。
   He doesn't act like a child.

17. もう大人おとならしくしてください。
   Please a little more like an adult.

18. この傷は致命傷らしい。 
   The wound seem to be mortal.

19. あいつもう元気らしいじゃん?  (Casual)
   Doesn't he seem already fine?

20. あんた、ホントに浅薄せんぱくでいやらしいだわ。(Rough female speech)
   You, you're a really shallow and disgusting man!

21. わざとらしい微笑びしょう
   An intentional/unnatural smile

22. そんな発言はつげんはいかにも彼らしい。
      Speech like that is typical of him.

23. このごろあんたらしくねーよ。(乱暴な言い方)
     You haven't been yourself lately.