Grammar Info
N1 Lesson 2: 12/17

ものを
but, although, if only, I wish I had

Structure
Verb[ば](1) + Verb + もの(2)
Verb[ば](1) + [い]Adjective + もの(2)
Verb[ば](1) + [な]Adjective + + もの(2)
Verb[ば](1) + Noun + + もの(2)

(1) Verb[たら]、Verb +
(2) もの
Details
Register Standard
使用域 一般
Information
  • [AものをB, similar to のに, is used to express that something happens contrary to expectations. However, it emphasizes displeasure, criticism, or regret towards the listener more strongly and is considered more formal and old fashioned than のに.]
  • [Also, unlike のに, there usually is a condition in A, which if only had been realized, B would not have happened. Therefore it is generally not used in “despite the fact” type of sentences (毎日走っていたのに重量を負けない). B can be omitted]
  • [Remember that ものを can also be used as a noun meaning “thing” with direct object particle]
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かみやま:「その不良学生(ふりょうがくせい)が僕(ぼく)鉛筆(えんぴつ)を食(く)わなかったら入学試験(にゅうがくしけん)を受(う)けるはずのもんを...(食(く)ったから、受(う)けられなかった。)」
Kamiyama: "If that delinquent hadn’t eaten my pencil, I would have taken the school entrance exam for sure, but… (He has eaten it, so I couldn’t.)"
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犯罪(はんざい)コメディ映画(えいが)、トニー:「まったく、ボリス、おとなしく死(し)んでおればいいものを...」
Crime comedy movie, Tony: "Dear God, Boris, it would have been good if you had just shut up and died, but…"
[ものを is very often used with ばいい・ばよかった structures]
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もっと早(はや)くタバコをやめれば健康問題(けんこうもんだい)なしに済(す)んだものを、手遅(ておく)れになってしまった。」
"If I had quit smoking much earlier I would have ended up without any health problems, but now it is too late."
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Online
Books
Try N1
Page 111
Sou Matome Bunpou N1
Page 63
Shin Kanzen Master N1 Bunpou
Page 36
A Dictionary of Advanced Japanese Grammar
Page 279