top of page
Recent Posts

【What is the Difference Between “(Transitive verb)てあります” and “(Intransitive verb)ています”?】

「(Transitive verb)てあります」VS「(Intransitive verb)ています」



These sentences are quite similar but they have different meanings.

Let's look at the sentence patterns of Japanese verbs which state continuation with transitive and intransitive verbs

【What is the Difference Between “(Transitive verb)てあります” and “(Intransitive verb)ています”?】

To understand the sentence patterns, let's use a simple example.

《Situation ①》

The door is open.

→Mr Tanaka closed the door.

→The door has been closed.

To describe the resulting state where the door has been closed by someone (Mr Tanaka), you will say...

ドアが しめてあります。

You can actually use a transitive verb to emphasize that the resulting state is the result of action done by someone

《Situation ②》

The wind is so strong that it forces the door in the room to be closed.

In this case, you can say ドアが しまっています。

An intransitive verb is used to only emphasize/describe the resulting state.

In both the above examples, the resulting states are the same - the door remains closed. However you will use either of them depending on what you want to describe.


If you want to emphasize on the fact that someone/actor has closed the door in the past and it still remain closed, use Transitive verb (て-form) あります.

If you don't care who closed the door and just want to describe the fact that the window was closed and it still remain closed, use Intransitive verb (て-form) います.

I hope you understand how to use them

Miu Tomo Japanese Language School

bottom of page