Grammar Info

N3 Lesson 9: 13/22

()む ②

Remain, To do thoroughly, Deeply, Intensely


Verb[ます+ ()


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About 込む ②

In Japanese, the う - Verb ()む 'to jam into' is frequently used as a suffix to convey several different meanings. The primary meanings are as follows:
(A) ()む - To enter completely into doing (A), or the state of being in (A).
(A) ()む - To enter a state of doing (A) that will not be considered complete until 'success'.
(A) ()む - To enter a state of doing (A) that cannot be escaped from.
In this lesson, we will exclusively focus on the second and third meanings, which are usually translated as 'to remain in (A)', 'to thoroughly do (A)', 'to do (A) deeply', or 'to do (A) intensely'. This form will be attached to the conjunctive form of other verbs.
  • 警察(けいさつ)(みち)()(なか)(すわ)()でいる(ひと)(はな)しかけた。
    The police went to talk to the person that remained seated in the middle of the road.
  • もうこんな時間(じかん)か、(はな)()じゃった
    It's already this time, we got lost in talking, didn't we?
  • そんなに(かんが)()なくてもいいよ。
    You don't have to think so deeply about this.
  • (いま)()()(ちゅう)ので()()たらかけなおします。
    I am held up working right now, so I will call you back once my hands are free.
Despite the multiple meanings, ()む can almost always be thought of as 'jamming (B) into (A)'. This means that whatever the (A) action is, will be something that is not easily entered, but also not easily escaped from.




    At once, everyone sunk into an intense silence and remained silent.


    I was tired, so I fell deeply asleep without taking a shower. (intensely・thoroughly)


    Chat between friends: 'What were you so intently talking about for so long?' (deeply・thoroughly)


    Essay: 'I think that devoting oneself deeply to one thing is important.'


    To squat down deeply (with their face between their legs) in order to take a picture of a small flower.

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込む ② – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (6 in total)

  • Pushindawood


    @rextruong Thank you for your question. It is a bit confusing to define both 込む and 切る as “…completely.” While there are instances where they can replace one another, the nuances behind the two are a bit different.

    It might be better to think of 込む as " thoroughly," “deeply,” or “intensely” and 切る as “completely (to the end,” “utterly,” or “resolutely.” As 込む’s kanji implies, you will often see it used when something “goes in(to)” something else (飛び込む - jump into, 覚え込む - to fix in memory, 教え込む - to drill (a teaching) into (someone’s head), etc.), while 切る has a “cut off” point (言い切る - say definitively (and not say any more), 使い切る - to use up (all), 疲れ切る - to be completely exhausted and have nothing left, etc.).

    Just by looking at the examples above, one can deduce that 切る is more likely to be used in negative situations or when the outcome is not necessarily favorable, while 込む is usually us...

  • rextruong


    @Pushindawood thank you for the answer. If you don’t mind, may I also ask about the difference between these two and ~あげる/~あがる?

  • Daru



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