How to say "But" or "However" in Japanese – でも – JLPT N5 Grammar

In Japanese, there are several words that can be used to say “But” or “however” – such as kedo, shikashi, and demo.

Today we will look at the word でも and how it can be used in a Japanese conversation. It’s one of the most essential JLPT N5 grammar points.

In Japanese, the word for “However” or “But” is でも。

It usually appears at the beginning of a sentence after an initial concept.

For example:

nihonjin to motto hanashitai desu. demo, watashi no nihongo wa amari jouzu dewa arimasen.
I want to speak to Japanese people more. But my Japanese is not so good.


Suu-paa – ni ikimashita. demo, shmatteita.
I went to the supermarket, but it was closed

Demo is often used to start a new sentence or to connect two ideas together.

Try it yourself! We’ve compiled 30 other N5 grammar points, so check them out here to prepare the upcoming test!

Looking for more casual part-time Japanese Lessons either online or in person? Start taking Japanese lessons with us!

Our new Shibuya school opens in August!

Learn Japanese in Shibuya or Online.

Get Started