てある - Grammar Discussion

something is done
has been done
remaining state

Structure

  • Verb[ ] + ある

:warning: Only used with transitive verbs!

[State of an action remains]

View on Bunpro

It feels to me like, for this grammar point, there should be a parallel with である and the copulas, as it’s exactly the same idea.

Noun + [で] + ある - is (noun)
Verb[ て ] + ある - is (verb (as in the state decurring from that action))

Or am I colossally wrong and there is some other nuance exists? The grammar page, especially the examples, seem to associate てある with the present perfect (and also include a subject that is implicit/unknown in the original sentence), which bothers me a bit.

Are you suggesting to combine the grammar point? If である is a formal written replacement for だ/です、while てある is a transitive verb modifier, I would prefer the separate practice as this is quite a distinction IMO (even though both state of action vs. state of existence behave sort of similar when using ある). I haven’t had the chance to to use/read である all the much either. However, your suggestion helps me remember better so it’s a nice parallel to mention.

Nonono, don’t combine it, that would be bad, especially considering である is far more basic than this grammar point. I simply suggested explaining てある through the parallel with である, emphasizing the fact that, like the copula, てある doesn’t really map to an English form all that well.

である is very common in Japanese dictionaries, which I’ve come to use more and more.

2 Likes

I’ve often seen that you’re supposed to change を to が when you make てある however several of the sentences still have を. Is this not a hard rule?

Edit: Nevermind, the Maggie link had the answer. However, it may be worthwhile to note on the grammar page that using を is somewhat of an exception for this grammar point.

2 Likes

@Johnathan-Weir Good call! I have updated the Meaning page to include a note. Cheers!

1 Like