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Verb Conjugation #4: た (Ta) Form (with PDF Chart)

Updated: Apr 13, 2021

Note: To get the most out of this article, I strongly recommend that you first understand the differences between Japanese verb classes. I also (somewhat less strongly) recommend that you know how to conjugate Japanese verbs into their て form.


What Is the た (Ta) Form?

The technical name for the た ("ta") form of Japanese verbs is the past informal form. As the name implies, you should use this verb form in casual situations when speaking about what happened in the past.

This verb form is also used in polite speech when the verb does not end the sentence (e.g., 山本さんは早く帰った女の人です / Mrs. Yamamoto is the woman who went home early).

How to Conjugate Verbs into the た Form

If you know how to conjugate verbs into the て form, the same rules apply. We just use た/だ instead of て/で. Check out my article on conjugating verbs into the て form here.

Ichidan Verbs

To conjugate ichidan (class 2 verbs) into the た form, replace the final る syllable with た. For example, 見 (み / miru) becomes 見 (み / mita).

Godan Verbs

The ending that a godan verb takes when changed into its た form depends on the ending syllable of its plain/dictionary form.

If the plain form ends in く or ぐ, change this syllable to いた or いだ, respectively. For example, 聞 (き/ kiku) becomes 聞いた (きいた / kiita), and 泳 (およ/ oyogu) becomes 泳いだ (およいだ / oyoida).

If the plain form ends in う, つ, or る, change this syllable to った. For example, 会 (あ / au) becomes 会った (あった / atta), 立 (た / tatsu) becomes 立った (たった / tatta), and 帰 (かえ / kaeru) becomes 帰った (かえった / kaetta).

If the plain form ends in む, ぶ, or ぬ, change this syllable to んだ. For example, 読 (よ / yomu) becomes よんだ (よんだ / yonda), 飛 (と / tobu) becomes 飛んだ (とんだ / tonda), and 死 (し / shinu) becomes 死んだ (しんだ / shinda).

Finally, if the plain form ends in す, change this syllable to した. For example, 貸 (か / kasu) becomes 貸した (かした /kashita).

Irregular Verbs

する becomes した (not すった, as it would if it followed the rules).

来る (くる / kuru) becomes 来た (きた / kita). Note that the kanji syllable's pronunciation changes.

PDF Chart

Click the link below to download the PDF version of this chart.

Verb Conjugation (た)
Download PDF • 37KB

Example Sentences



Atarashii kuruma o katta.

I bought a new car.



Kinyoubi no yoru, eiga o mita.

I watched a movie on Friday night.



Sengetsu, omoshiroi hon o yonda.

I read an interesting book last month.



Hirugohan wa nani o tabeta?

What did you eat for lunch?



Senshuu, mainichi hataraita.

I worked every day last week.

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