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Using nara なら

There are several ways to express the meaning behind “if” in Japanese. なら is one of them. It means “if the preceding phrase is true, then…”

It may be best to memorize example sentences.

-i Adjectives: Adjective + なら [You can also use の: -i Adj + の + なら]

高いなら、買わない。
takai nara, kawanai.
If it is expensive, I won’t buy it.

 

面白いなら、見たい。
omoshiroi nara, mitai.
If it is interesting, I want to see it.

Verbs: Plain form + なら [You can also use の: Plain form + の + なら]

あなたが行くなら、私も行きます。
anata ga iku nara, watashi mo ikimasu.
If you are going, I’ll go too.

 

チョコレートを食べるなら、歯をみがきなさい。
chokore-to o taberu nara, ha o migakinasai.
If you are going to eat chocolate, brush your teeth. 

お金があるなら、テレビを買いなさい。
okane ga aru nara, terebi o kainasai.
If you have money, go ahead and buy a TV.

Also here are a few common usages with nouns:

あなたなら、できる。
anata nara, dekiru.
If it is you (doing it), you can do it. (it can be done)
 

大人なら、そんなことはしない。
otona nara, sonna koto wa shinai.
An adult wouldn’t do such a thing.
(if it is an adult, the adult wouldn’t do such a thing.)

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