Grammar Info

N4 Lesson 9: 14/16


Just did, Something just happened

ばっかり, ばっか, ばかし, and ばっかし are all fairly common casual variations of ばかり


Verb[た]+ ばかり


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About たばかり

As an adverbial particle, ばかり usually has one of three basic meanings.
Degree: 程度(ていど) - Highlights the 'rough' amount/degree of something (similar to くらい).
Limit: 限定(げんてい) - Highlights the 'limit' of something (similar to だけ).
Completion: 完了(かんりょう) - Highlights the 'end', or 'completion' of something.
In this lesson, we will focus primarily on the completion meaning. When connecting ばかり to the past form of a verb (using た), it will imply that a specific action has 'just finished', 'just stopped', or 'just been completed'.
  • (えき)()たばかり友達(ともだち)から「やっぱり今日(きょう)(あそ)ないメッセージ()
    Just as I got to the station, I got a message from my friend saying, 'Actually, I can't hang out today'.
  • 一回(いっかい)(おく)たばかり先生(せんせい)(おこ)られ
    I got scolded by my teacher for being late just once.
  • さっき()たばかりから、お(なか)まだ()ていない
    I just ate earlier, so I am still not hungry.
Fun Fact
Despite having three different meanings, ばかり can be thought of as always highlighting how close one thing is to another.
Degree: 程度(ていど) - Highlights (A)'s degree of closeness (to a stated amount).
Limit: 限定(げんてい) - Highlights (A)'s degree of closeness (to a description).
Completion: 完了(かんりょう) - Highlights (A)'s degree of closeness (to a point in time).




    I just left home.


    Just when I got on the train, I dropped my phone.


    I just heard that Yumi got a boyfriend.


    You are going abroad again? You just went to Taiwan last week, didn't you?


    Even though I just learned that kanji, I already forgot it.

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たばかり – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (12 in total)

  • FredKore


    I just got the same sentence and had the same reaction.

    Just when I got on the train, I dropped my phone.

    It might be better to have a translation like this:
    I just got on the train, and I dropped my phone.
    (I think the で makes it tricky to translate.)

  • CroAniki


    Just started this grammar point, thanks for answering a question I had in my head so succinctly!
    I think it would be a great addition to the grammar point page as a “Caution” segment or something like that.

  • nkali


    Necroposting here so it’ll be attached to the grammar point discussion. It seems Bunpro does not accept casual versions (ばっかり、ばかし、ばっかし) even in non-keigo questions? I was a bit surprised by that, and need to keep myself in check and retype the answer every time I type ばっかり

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