Grammar Info

N3 Lesson 3: 12/22


There is no need to, Never happens


Verb + ことはない


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About ことはない

ことはない is an expression that has two primary purposes in Japanese. To convey that there is 'no need for (A)', or that '(A) never happens'. In these cases, (A) is a verb that will appear directly before こと. ことはない is often used to reassure someone that something will not come to pass.
In this expression, the adverbial particle は is working to present (A) as the extent (a regular role of adverbial particles), while the 形容詞(けいようし) ない negates that extent. This negation is up to interpretation, with the literal meaning simply being 'There is no (A)'.
  • そんなに(あわ)てることはないまだ時間(じかん)いっぱいあるからゆっくりやればいいよ。
    There is no need to rush that much. We still have a lot of time, so it is okay if you pace yourself.
  • 10(ねん)(まえ)(おや)喧嘩(けんか)てから(おや)(はな)ことはない
    Ever since I fought with my parents 10 years ago, I have not talked to them.
This structure is very different to たことがない, which presents a single instance of something not having happened. As opposed to the case marking particle が, は presents the verb/verb-phrase as a topic itself in non-past form, highlighting its non-existence. Due to this, ことはない can imply that (A) is unthinkable, or even impossible.
  • そんなに心配(しんぱい)した(こと)()い。
    There has never been a time where I worried that much.
  • そんなに心配(しんぱい)することはないよ。
    There is no need to worry that much.


  • これ以上(いじょう)(なに)()ことはない

    There is no need to say more.

  • 沖縄(おきなわ)()んだら、(ゆき)()ことはない

    If you live in Okinawa, you never see snow.

  • ()とした(かぎ)()つけたから、もう心配(しんぱい)することはない

    Since we found the keys that were dropped, there is no need to worry anymore.

  • (おそ)れることはない(おも)()ってやってみるんだ!

    There is no need to be scared. Give it all of your might!

  • そんな(いそ)ことはない。ぼちぼちやればいい

    There is no need to hurry. You should take your time.

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ことはない – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (2 in total)

  • ulurujamman


    Any particular reason why it’s ことある for “it happens” and ことない for "it never happens?

  • Daru


    Just the nature of the Grammar Points. The fact that the translations have this polar-end opposite meaning to them is just a coincidence. If you were to say, ことはある or ことがない, depending on the sentence they could work, but remember that these are Grammar Points for a reason.

    Hope this helps!

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