何 + counter + か - Grammar Discussion

some
several
a few

Structure

  • + counter +
  • いく + counter +
  • いくつか = general counter for things

[The meaning of / いく + counter + is closer to ‘at least two, but perhaps more’ than ‘multiple’]

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What’s the difference between this construction and just using the prefix 数?

Like:

数年 vs 何年か

When do I use 何 and when do I use いく?

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The last link ‘Counter practice!’ has had a url change, it can now be found here.

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@Ambo100 Thank you for letting us know and thank you for providing the new link. I have updated the Readings section. Cheers!

I’d like to know as well - it doesn’t allow いく in
なんさつかほんやまのようにゆかまれていた。
but I can’t tell why not.

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I’m a little confused. I have found some sites saying thay these counter expressions can’t follow が because they don’t work like nouns.

For example:

このアニメの何話かを見たと思う

Shouldn’t it be このアニメを何話か見たと思う or このアニメの何話か見たと思う without を at all?

Hey guys!

@CrisH
I’m guessing you’re trying to answer いくさつか?It’s because of nuance.

なん is almost always used to count, whereas いく is more often used in set expressions. It’s not wrong in the sense that its ungrammatical, it’s just so uncommon you’d probably make heads turn.

You’re much better off just using the set expressions (いくら、いくつ…) when it contextually makes the most sense to.

@Manab

Could you link me to the site? I want to look deeper into that assertion.

That said, in Japanese, its extremely common to drop particles in spoken casual language. So, by this account:

Its perfectly natural/OK to drop the を here.

Set expressions and Nouns are different parts of speech.
The example sentence you provided, the following is happening:

[このアニメ] In this anime
[このアニメの][何話か] In this anime, a few of its chapters (Here it’s a の-adjective connection)
[このアニメの何話か][を][見たと思う] In this anime, a few of its chapters I think I’ve seen.

を marks the object that the following verb will talk about.

This sentence is correct too! It’s just changing around the order a bit. There are many ways to say the same thing, you’ll find that that’s specially true as you keep progressing.

Hope this helped!

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