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I have been translating articles from NHK News Easy for practice, and I've noticed they sometimes use 「など」in a way I'm not familiar with. For example, in an article about a train that's about to be decommissioned because of its age, this sentence occurs:

このためJR西日本などは、トワイライトエクスプレスの運転を来年の春にやめることにしました。

I don't really understand the meaning of 「JR西日本など」, since my grammar resources explain the meaning of the suffix など as "non-exhaustive listing, like "etc.". So, does this mean that "JR West Japan and others" decided to retire the train?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 9 down vote accepted

Yes, this "など" simply means "and others."

According to Wikipedia, トワイライトエクスプレス is operated not only by JR西日本, but also by 2 other companies (JR東日本 and JR北海道).

http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E3%83%88%E3%83%AF%E3%82%A4%E3%83%A9%E3%82%A4%E3%83%88%E3%82%A8%E3%82%AF%E3%82%B9%E3%83%97%E3%83%AC%E3%82%B9

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I didn't think of it this way. This serves to remind me again that a little background knowledge never hurt anyone... –  waldrumpus May 29 at 19:52

Although this is unlikely for NHK publications, note that some writers will throw out a など in strange and inappropriate places, perhaps out of a sense that it makes the statement "softer" somehow. Some of the technical texts I've worked on have had gems like,

この変数がブーリアンで、値がtrue、false、など
This variable is a Boolean, with values such as true or false.

Given that, in most implementations, a Boolean can only ever be true or false, the など here is completely superfluous and arguably just wrong. So when you encounter a など, analyze the text to see if it really belongs there.

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One of the most recognizable arches in St. Louis. xkcd.com/1368 –  Williham Totland Jun 2 at 12:00

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