日本人英文法の意外な穴

帝京大学教授で、ルミナス英和辞典(研究社)をはじめとする英語辞書編纂にも多く関わってこられたクリストファ・バーナード先生が月3~4回、語法、語彙を含めた広い意味での英文法の様々なトピックを解説します。

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111. Lend vs. borrow: In-verbs and out-verbs

111. Lend vs. borrow: In-verbs and out-verbs

The other day I was wondering why so many learners of English have so much difficulty with the verbs "lend" and "borrow".

The basic patterns are rather simple:
1) I lent John a pen.
2) John borrowed a pen from me.
3) Will you lend me your pen?
4) Can I borrow your pen?

Furthermore, we can remember that "lend" is short in both English and Japanese (lend [four letters], かす[two letters]), and "borrow" is long in both English and (borrow [six letters], かりる[three letters]. There therefore seems to be very little reason for confusion.

I remember that when I was learning Japanese I had a lot of trouble with the verbs 預かる and 預ける. The difference here is not a question of transitive and intransitive verbs. It is a question of in-verb vs. out-verb.

The former is an in-verb, and the latter is an out-verb:
コートをお預かりしましょう?(= I am receiving the coat
コートを預けたいんですが。(= I am getting rid of the coat)

"Borrow" is likewise an in-verb, and "lend" is likewise an out-verb. This is another reason why it is easy to remember which one is which.

In the next Column I want to give a list of in-verbs and out-verbs in English.

◆NOTES◆
furthermore:さらに
likewise:同様に


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