This article contains lesson derived from Japanese language book called Shin Nihongo no Kiso 1 chapter 6 practice B part 7. In this article we are going to use grammar pattern ‘-masenka’（―ませんか）and ‘-mashou’ (－ましょう) in a pair of question and answer in form of short conversation between two person.
We can use ‘-masenka’ in Japanese language to ask someone to do something or to ask someone by inviting them to do something together . It is actually a form of interrogative question.
The other Japanese grammar pattern which is also described in this article as part of Japanese language is using ‘-mashou’. It is also a form of invitation to do something which actually has the same vibe with ‘-masenka’. But in my opinion the different between both of the pattern are the ‘-masenka’ is tend to be more polite than ‘-mashou’. And for more clear distinction, as we already know in japanese language, the suffix ‘-ka’is used to form interrogative question. So, ‘-masenka’ has the sense of asking to join the invitation rather than ‘-mashou’ which is actually stating to invite.
Here is the chart which I simply summarize by my own reasoning :
|In form of positive sentence||In form of interrogative sentence|
|Stating an invitation or an agreement to the invitation.||Asking to join the invitation|
|It is a normal form.||Tend to be more polite|
|Tend to be answered in form of agreement to strengthen the invitation statement. While on several cases there can be a disagreement on the invitation.||Usually answered by a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ reply.|
Below is the example of the answer which is going to be discussed later :
いっしょに 旅行へ 行きませんか。
いっしょに りょこうへ いきませんか。
Isshoni ryokou e ikimasenka.
… ee, ikimashou.
Why don’t we take a trip (travel) together ?
… sure, let’s go (take a trip, travel together).
The above pattern can be viewed as the first person is asking or invite someone else to do something. Since it is in form of interrogative sentence, the person expect a reply or answer from the other party. The form which is used is a Japanese grammar pattern of ‘–masenka’.
On the other hand, the other party reply with a positive answer followed by an agreement of the invitation which is asked before by using Japanese grammar pattern of ‘-mashou’. The other party can actually answered ‘no’, but in this book context as shown in the example, the answer is ‘yes’.
Based on the above pattern and example, we will answer in form of short conversation . The question is displayed in Shin Nihongo no Kiso 1 chapter 6 practice B part 7 on page 48. Below are the answers :
いっしょに 写真を 撮りませんか。
いっしょに しゃしんを とりませんか。。。
Isshoni shashin wo torimasenka…
How about taking a picture together ?…
。。。Sure, let’s take it (together).
いっしょに お茶を 飲みませんか。。。
いっしょに おちゃを のみませんか。。。
Isshoni ocha wo nomimasenka ? …
How about drinking some tea together ?…
。。。Sure, let’s drink it (together).
いっしょに 昼ごはんを 食べませんか。
いっしょに ひるごはんを たべませんか。
Isshoni hiru gohan wo tabemasenka ?.
How about (eating) having lunch together ?
。。。Sure, let’s (eat) take lunch (together).
いっしょに ピンポンを しませんか。
Isshoni pinpon wo shimasenka ?.
How about (doing) playing pingpong together ?.
。。。Sure, let’s (play) do it (together).
The complete question is displayed in Shin Nihongo no Kiso 1 chapter 6 practice B part 6 on page 48.