|Expressing One's Thoughts|
When expressing one's thought, feelings, opinions, ideas and guesses, "~ to omou (I think that ~)" is frequently used. The particle "to" indicates that the preceding sentence or words are a quotation.
Since "~ to omou" always refers to the speaker's thoughts, "watashi wa" is normally omitted.
|Ashita ame ga furu to omoimasu.
|I think it will rain tomorrow.|
|Kono kuruma wa takai to omou.
|I think this car is expensive.|
|Kare wa furansu-jin da to omou.
|I think he is French.|
|Kono kangae o
dou omoimasu ka.
|What do you think about
|Totemo ii to omoimasu.
|I think it is very good.|
If the content of the quoted clause expresses one's intention or speculation about a future event or state, a volitional form of a verb is used preceding "~ to omou." To express a thought other than one's volition or opinion toward the future, a plain form of a verb or adjective is used preceding "~ to omou" as shown in the examples above.
|Oyogi ni ikou to omou.
|I think I'm going to swim.|
|Ryokou ni tsuite kakou to omou.
|I think I will write about my trip.|
To express a thought or idea you have at the time of your statement, "~ to omotte iru (I am thinking that ~)" is used rather than "~ to omou."
|Haha ni denwa o shiyou to
|I'm thinking of calling my mom.|
|Rainen nihon ni ikou to
|I'm thinking of going to Japan
|Atarashii kuruma o kaitai to
|I'm thinking that
I want to buy a new car.
When the subject is a third person, "~ to omotte iru" is used exclusively.
|Kare wa kono shiai ni kateru to omotte iru.
|He thinks he can win this game.|
Unlike English, the negation "I don't think" is normally placed within the quoted clause. It is possible to negate "~ to omou" such as "~ to omowanai," however, it expresses stronger doubt, and is close to the English "I doubt that ~."
|Maki wa ashita
konai to omoimasu.
|I don't think
Maki is coming tomorrow.
muzukashikunai to omou.
|I don't think Japanese is difficult.|