Conjugating Verbs to Conditional Form (〜ば)

    • Verb
    • Conjugation Form
    The conditional form of Japanese verbs is also often called the ば form because all verbs end in 〜ば in this form. This form is used when we would use "if" or "when" in English.

    What Is the Conditional Form?

    All Japanese verbs in the "conditional form" end in 〜ば, so it is also often called the ば form. The name "conditional form" comes from the fact that it is used to express the conditions that need to be in place for a certain situation to arise, and it can generally be translated as "if," "when," or "whenever" in English. For example, 食べれば means "if/when I eat," 飲めば means "if/when I drink," and すれば means "if/when I do."

    In this post, we'll focus on how to conjugate verbs into the conditional form. If you want to know more about what it means and how we use it, check out this page.

    Godan  → 会えば
     → 立てば
     → 写せば
    代わ → 代われば
     → 書けば
     → 泳げば
     → 死ねば
     → 学べば
     → 休めば
    Ichidan 食べ → 食べれば
    起き → 起きれば
    閉じ → 閉じれば
    Irregular く  →  ればく  
     → すれば

    The conjugation of this form is very regular, which makes it easy to conjugate. In fact, we can apply exactly the same rule to every single Japanese verb, including 来る and する, which usually behave differently from the rest of the pack.

    All we need to do is take the dictionary form of the verb (that's the one that always ends in a hiragana from the う line, like 会 and 行) and switch it to the え line:

     → 会
     → 行

    The second and final step is to add 〜ば:

     + え + ば = 会えば
     + け + ば = 行けば

    If you prefer to think of this in terms of romaji, remove the final "u" sound from any verb, and replace it with "eba." So for example, the verb for "to meet," 会う (au) becomes 会えば (aeba), and the verb for "to write," 書く(kaku) becomes 書けば (kakeba). What about 食べる (to eat)? Exactly the same! 食べる (taberu) turns into 食べれば (tabereba).