TAKOBOTO

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そう
sou
JLPT N4
Edit  Amatuka
Meaning
Looks like
Looks like snow will fall
Edit  Amatuka
Formation
Verb stem
+
そう
+
(だ)
い-adjective without い
+
そう
+
(だ)
な-adjective (without な)
+
そう
+
(だ)
Negative form ~ない without い
+
+
そう
+
(だ)
Edit 
See also
Phrases
これは、たべられそうではありません。
This doesn't look like it's edible.
Edit  #3258 Miki, bamboo4
ゆきがおりそうですね。
Looks like it's going to snow doesn't it?
Edit  #768 Amatuka
おいしそうなデザートですね。
Doesn't the dessert look delicious!
Edit  #770 Amatuka
「おこしてくれればよかったのに」よくあさロンがふきげんそうにいった。
"You could have woken me up ..." Ron said the following morning in a grumpy [seeming] way.
Edit  #827 Amatuka
このほんはたかそうです。
This book looks expensive
Edit  #1056 Amatuka
うどんがおいしそう!なんじたべられるの?
The udon looks delicious. When can we eat?
Edit  #3137 KotatsuSama, bamboo4
きょうしつはしずかそうだ。
The classroom seems quiet (to me).
Edit  #6609 deeana
あめがおりそうだ。
It seems (to me) that it will rain. (I say after I have looked at the sky and saw clouds) sou
Edit  #6610 deeana
Discussion and comments
This form is

(Verb masu stem) + sou
降りそう
furisou
= seems it will rain

(i-Adj base) + sou
美味しそう
oishisou
= seems delicious

(na-Adj base) + sou
暇そう
himasou
= seems to have time

With negatives the -nai becomes -nasa:
降らなさそう
furanasasou
= seems like it won't rain
dc
make sure to check [sou-2] for the difference between the two -sou endings... i heard / it seems
dc
= look; look like; appear; seem; feel like
-auxiliary adjective which indicates that what is expressed by the preceding sentence is THE SPEAKER'S CONJECTURE concerning an event in the future/ present state of someone/ sth (never a past state/event), BASED ON WHAT THE SPEAKER SEES OR FEELS.
-used only when the speaker directly observes sth
-cannot be used to express the speaker's conjecture concerning a past event/ state
-Noun/ Noun+ copula cannot precede sou da (in this case we use rashii), but N+copula neg/nonpast can:
ex: a)* 加藤さんは学生そうだ。
  b)* 加藤さんは学生だそうだ。=Mr Katou looks like a student. 
  c)加藤さんは学生じゃなさそうだ。=Mr Katou doesn't look like a student。
- in this construction, the negative form of verbs usually don't precede sou da. Instead, Vmasu sou ni/ mo nai is used:
a) 彼は車を売りそうに・もない。= He doesn't seem to sell his car.
  b) この問題は学生は出来そうに・もない。= It doesn't seem that the students can solve this problem.
-also used to express the speaker's conjecture concerning his own non-volitional future actions based on what he feels:
a)僕はこのケーキを残しそうだ。=I'm affraid I can't eat all this cake.
 b)私はとても疲れていてたおれそうだ。=I'm so tired that I feel weak (lit:like I'm falling down)
- sou da is a NA Adjective; the prenominal form is SOU NA:
a) 高そうな車=a car which looks expensive/ an expensive-looking car
b)雨が降りそうな空=(lit:) the sky which looks like it will bring rain
deeana
I added a See Also to よう...

Unless I am mistaken if you want to use a noun, you use N + のよう (e.g. 先生のよう).
But, for a negative you use N + ではなさそう (e.g. 先生ではなさそう)

Also, somewhere I read that the negative for a verb is V (ます form) + そうもありません NOT the そう followed by ではありません mentioned in the first comment. Is this true?

As for V-tai form I think たい acts like A1 adjective.

いい uses よい instead (e.g. よさそう / よくなさそう)

Finally, note that そう acts as な-adj (you can probably guess this from the examples but I thought I would state it explicitly).

Any corrections very welcome...
yookoso
そう followed by ではありません can be used. I added eg.
What is A1 adjective?
Miki
ex#3258 I think これは食べられそうではありません。is fine.
When 思いません is followed, これは食べられるとは思いません。would be better.
anon
Possibly the '不機嫌そう' use in the example is another way of distinguishing between what you can actually know (whether somebody sounds grumpy) vs what only they know (how they feel).
Amatuka
watch out with きそう, it sounds too close to くそ
KotatsuSama
hmm Do you mean くそ is the one「きそう、(-.-;) くる、くる I have to go to the bathroom」? Or くそ!くそっ! Both are the same in English, too でしょ?
Miki
ex#3137 KS is too good at Kanji. Usually we use うどん.
Miki
In the real world, nobody would confuse between 来そう and くそ.
bamboo4
来るそう = I heard he will come
きそう = it seems he will come
dc
Negative can also be formed by +ve そう followed by
ではありません (etc.)
美味しそうじゃないよ! "It doesn't look tasty!"
your name
Vm = Verb -masu base
降る→降ります→降り
Amatuka
One more rule/example:
If you want to say いい + そう (looks good)
then you need to use よさそう
Neale
Appparently the [sou] ending can be used to connotate both heard and seems:

負けるそう 
makeru-sou desu
= I heard he will lose

負けそうです
make-sou
= seems he will lose
dc
Beware forming this construction with かわいい (可愛い). かわいそう(可哀相) does not mean "looks cute", but "pathetic" or "pitiful", as my friend managed to find out to his chagrin.
seanolan