上げる (ageru) Meaning Japanese Grammar - At the Limit

Author GokuGoku for article '上げる (ageru) Meaning Japanese Grammar - At the Limit'


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上げる (ageru) Meaning Japanese Grammar - At the Limit

The term 上げる (ageru), or 上がる (agaru) in its intransitive form, is an auxiliary verb meaning finish, completely, complete, at the limit.

上げる and 上がる are added after a verb to emphasize that the action has been done completely, to the end, all the way.

In this post we are going learn more about the meaning of 上げる, how it is formed, and when 上げる is used through real example sentences.

How 上げる is formed

上げる and 上がる are added as suffixes to the conjugated verb in its stem form or "masu" form:

Verb stem+上げる
Verb stem+上がる

The difference between 上げる (transitive) and 上がる (intransitive) is that:

  • 上げる is used when someone has completed the indicated action

  • 上がる is used when an event has come to an end (without someone taking an action)

Let's see some examples of verbs conjugated with 上げる and 上がる:


How and when to use 上げる

上げる and 上がる indicate that something has been completed to the limit.

With 上げる and 上がる, the limit refers to something natural or voluntary, not caused by any lack of resources or time

In this sense therefore 上げる and 上がる translate as do(A)to the end, do(A)to its completion.

Let's see an example sentence to understand the meaning of 上げる and 上がる:


Did you finish writing the report?

As we see from the example, using 上がる translates the verb to finish. In this case, together with the verb ()く (to write), 上がる allows you to express the fact that you have completed the report.

What 上がる adds is to the end. In fact, without 上がる, the sentence would simply have been write, without specifying if you wrote and finished:


Did you write the report?

上げる is most often used with verbs related to the production of something, with the nuance meaning finish creating something.

Some of these verbs are:

  • (きず)()げる: to establish, to build up

  • ()()げる: to launch, to shoot up

  • (つく)()げる: to build up, to put together

Difference with the use of the te form

Both 上げる and 上がる are added to the B2 base or "masu" form of the verb they are associated with.

This conjugation is different from using the te form to link two verbs. In fact, the te form implies two separate actions, performed one after the other.

The use of base B2 instead indicates a combination of the two verbs, almost forming a third verb with a different meaning from the first two: the first verb is the main action (for example ()く, to write), while the second adds an extra nuance (()げる, until the end).

Many of these verb combinations are idiomatic and can be found separately in a dictionary

Examples of 上げる


That fighting spirit has been refined well, it is approaching the real limit.


The drawing has finally been completed.


Read the name aloud.