430 - に限らず

JLPT N2 Grammar: に限らず

This week’s grammar point is all about being inclusive! And don’t you think we all need a little inclusiveness?

に限らず (にかぎらず) means “not limited to” or “not only.” It is a phrase used to show that a concept applies to more than one subject. The subject in these sentences always pertains to a certain group, and に限らず shows that something is not limited to that group.

If we take apart the grammar point, the meaning becomes clear.

に限らずcomes from the verb 限る (かぎる) which means “to restrict,” or “to limit.” The negative form of the verb is 限らない. As you may have already learned before, 〜ない can also be written as 〜ず.

So the phrase に限らず is just the negative form of the verb and literally means “not restricted to.”

Since the subject that comes before に限らず is a group, it is always preceded by a noun. Here is the construction:

NOUN + に限らず

子供(こども // child; children
子供に限らずこどもにかぎらず // not limited to children


Here are a few examples sentences to show you how it's used:

そばに限らず、麺料理はなんでも好きです。
そば にかぎらず、 めん りょうり は なんでも すき です。
I like all types of noodles, not just soba.
Literally: “soba + に限らず, + noodles + food + は + any + like + です.”

当店は和書に限らず、洋書も多く扱っております。
とうてん は わしょ にかぎらず、 ようしょ も おおく あつかっております。
Our store doesn’t just have Japanese books, we sell a lot of Western books too.
Literally: “this store + は + Japanese books + に限らず, + western books + も + a lot + sell / handle / deal with.”

アメリカに限らず、多くの国で肥満の増加が問題になっている。
アメリカ にかぎらず、 おおく の くに で ひまん の ぞうか が もんだい に なっている。
Rising obesity rates are not just a problem in the US, but in many other countries as well.
Literally: “America + に限らず, + a lot + の + countries + で + obesity + の + increase + が + problem + に + is becoming.”

クリスマスは子供に限らず、大人にとっても楽しい日です。
クリスマス は こども にかぎらず、 おとな にとって も たのしい ひ です。
Not just for children, Christmas is a fun day for adults too.
Literally: “Christmas + は + children + に限らず, + adults + for (=にとって) + も + fun + day + です.”


Try to think of things that are limited to a group:

Kids-only attractions.
Clothing marketed towards one gender or age group.
Stereotypes of certain countries or races of people.

Can you think of any others?

Now take these concepts and write a few examples sentences with に限らず to show that certain things are not limited to these groups. Not only a good exercise for Japanese, but for your mind! Take this opportunity to be a little more inclusive.

人間に限らず犬も服を着ることができる。
にんげん にかぎらず いぬ も ふく を きる ことができる。
Not only humans, but also dogs can wear clothes.
Literally: "humans + に限らず + dog + も + clothes + を + wear + こと + can do."


This lesson was written by Cassy L., a guest contributor:


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