しか or ばかり?

子どもの時、寝て(  )いて母がよく怒っていた。

So yesterday I was doing my usual vocabulary practice exercises when I came across this question. There were 4 options and 2 of them meant the same thing. しか and ばかり. In the search for an answer I turned to my best friend google and my grammar textbooks so here is what I found.

しか
しか is only used with negative forms, so the ending of the verb has to be negative.

Noun/ numeral}しか~ない only, no more than, no~ but
例:私はゆうべ3時間しかねられませんでした。I could only sleep for 3 hours last night.
Meaning that you ONLY slept 3 hours and of course you didn’t find it enough so it has a negative feeling. So by using しか, you underline the fact ” only 3 hours” as a negative fact plus it kinda gives your personal opinion.

ばかり
On the contrary, ばかりcan be used with negative or not.

Vて-form/ noun}ばかり only~, do nothing but~
例:映画館の中は、わかい人ばかりでした。 There were only young people in the cinema

If there are any mistakes or you want to add something to it, feel free to leave a comment below. Meanwhile, I will leave few links that I have found on the google.

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3 thoughts on “しか or ばかり?

  1. Ilya Lemieux says:

    The devil is in the details.
    And being aware of these teeny weeny details, as far as foreign languages go, can and does go a long way towards achieving the much-desired fluency in your target language. The hitch here, though, is that it takes some, nah, lots of doing, lots of groundwork to notice as many “details” as possible. On top of noticing them, you’ll also have to work through them: yes, resorting to trusty search engines, and the less pleasant parh for some – actually badgering native speakers with silly linguistically-heavy questions.
    In my case of English not being my native language, it never ceases to amaze me. Double negations, “not that” like stuff (not that I need to mention it here at all, just being silly), tons and I mean tons of sarcastic constructions… I can go for days.
    French is even crazier, what with bottomless interjections and tricky nuances… I can talk, it still drives me crazy to this very day.
    But your article is on Japanese altogether, which takes language learning to yet another level of impossibility, all of which cannot help but be admired and applauded.
    Chapeau
    Décidément, tu es sur la bonne voie à ce rythme-là !
    Continue comme ça ! Pas de repos pour les braves.
    If you ever need help with French (well, can’t help you out with Japanese, try as I might), let me know 😉 it can be perfectly triangulated via Russian and English at points.

    Liked by 1 person

    • roksana09 says:

      Language is impossible to fully master. Even in our native language, there will always be vocabulary which might confuse as at first and make us wonder. For example, when I hear my dad talking about his much-beloved topic, cars, I cannot understand all the terms he uses. We will always learn something new about our target language or our mother tongue since it constantly evolves and new words are added. 🙂

      Thank you for your offer and I will keep it in mind. 😛 It’s always nice to keep in touch with fellow language learners. 🙂

      I am sorry that I reply late yet again. Laziness and tiredness has taken over me, although yesterday was a special occasion. I was busy helping out and preparing food for my brother’s birthday. 🙂 It’s really sad that there is usually no cake leftovers, but always plenty of salads. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. perlacamacho24 says:

    When ばかり is used with a negative connotation, it also means something is in excess. Following your sentence example, 映画館の中は、わかい人ばかりでした, the speaker is not only commenting on how there’s only younger people in the movie theatre but how there’s so many of “only young people”. (if that makes sense lol)

    I could be wrong but I think ばかり fits with this sentence: ①子どもの時、寝て(  )いて母がよく怒っていた。
    In other words, when the speaker was a kid, because all he/she did was sleep (and a lot of it), their mother got mad a lot.

    The more you learn a language and advance, the more you start seeing the tiny nuance differences with certain word/sentence usages. It’s like trying to distinguish between two puzzle pieces of the same color and similar shapes, in order to pick the right piece to fill in the empty space. 🙂

    Like

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