Grammar Info
N2 Lesson 5: 6/18

Before long, All too soon, In the end, Eventually

やがて + Phrase
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軈(やが)て, meaning ‘all too soon’ is an adverb that appears at the beginning of sentences in order to indicate that some particular state that does not currently exist, will end up happening within an unspecified (usually short) amount of time. This can be translated as ‘before long (A)’, ‘in the end (A)’, or ‘eventually (A)’.
In the vast majority of cases, やがて will appear in hiragana.
  • そのアニメもあのアニメのようにやがて人気(にんき)がなくなるでしょう。
    That anime will probably lose popularity like that anime eventually.
  • 毎日(まいにち)漢字(かんじ)を読(よ)む練習(れんしゅう)をしていれば、やがて小説(しょうせつ)を読(よ)めるようになれるだろう。
    If you practice reading kanji every day, eventually, you will be able to read a novel.
  • もう5時(じ)なので、やがて日(ひ)が沈(しず)み始(はじ)めるだろう。
    It is already 5 p.m. so the sun will probably set soon.
Caution - In cases where やがて is used with a specified amount of time, it may be interpreted as ‘nearly’.
  • やがて60歳(さい)になるけど、経済的(けいざいてき)に余裕(よゆう)がないので死(し)ぬまで働(はたら)き続(つづ)けざるを得(え)ない。
    I am nearly 60 years old, however, I have no choice but to keep working till I die because I have no excess money.
  • 日本語(にほんご)を勉強(べんきょう)し始(はじ)めてから、やがて2年(ねん)が経(た)つ。
    It has been nearly 2 years since I have started studying Japanese.
Fun-fact - Originally, やがて was just used as a way to express the existence of something which has not currently taken place. Due to this, it had many more meanings in the past. This included things such as ‘namely’, ‘immediately’, ‘in a moment’, and others. All of these meanings simply hinted at the fact that the expression following やがて was already expected or known.
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No matter the book, it will eventually come to an end. However, is it really the case?
I decided to teach Japanese and studied everyday. Before long I became a teacher.
It will be nearly three hours since I started searching for my glasses.

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