I was wondering about the origin of these emphatic interrogative particles in Japanese. It seems very likely that they are related to the more typical forms だ and か, but what led to the postfixed /i/? Is it simply for emphasis, or is it a shortened form of よ? When did these forms start being used?

Thanks in advance

1 Answer 1


According to Daijisen and Daijirin, the particle い i derives from particle や ya or よ yo. Apparently it was introduced in Early Modern Japanese.

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