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This comes from a friend's post on Facebook. The situation is that my friend had injured his leg a while back, but it has since healed and he's now in for a checkup. His leg is in great condition, so the doctor thinks he's ready for sports.

先生{せんせい}には「もうフットサルして来{こ}い」と言{い}われた!

Which I think essentially means, "My doctor said [to me] I should go play futsal! (lit: play and come back)"

However, I thought には essentially meant "in the [place]". So, since my friend is not just using , is he saying this was said by someone, maybe the doctor, maybe a nurse or someone, in the vicinity of the doctor? Maybe in the office?

Or am I over thinking this?

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I think it means to exclude other contextually possible things. This should be the disambiguating function of は. That is to say that he specifically indicates that it is the doctor (and not anyone else that might be around that could have spoken) that said it. –  Flaw Nov 10 '11 at 6:08
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What the hell is futsal? –  istrasci Nov 10 '11 at 15:18

1 Answer 1

up vote 4 down vote accepted

No this には is there because the verb is in passive form and it means "by". The sentence literally means

"I was told by the doctor to come play futsal already."

The following sentence is equivalent:

先生が「もうフットサルして来い」と言った!

The doctor said "Go play futsal already."

The に comes whenever there is passive. For example "I was told by you" is

あなた**言われました。

The は in your sentence is the normal は used for emphasis.

Hope this helps.

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@Flaw: Yes it doesn't only appear in sentences with passive form but in the question he wrote that he thought it meant "in the" which is not the case in the example. –  Rudy the Reindeer Nov 10 '11 at 8:52
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@DaveMG: You are not wrong at all, には can also mean "in". I meant to say that in this particular sentence it doesn't mean "in". –  Rudy the Reindeer Nov 10 '11 at 10:07
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Picky correction to this answer: The doctor never said the words "come play futsal". He or she said to play futsal (フットサルして) and then come back (来い), or more naturally in English, to 'go' (and) play futsal. The wording "come" was only correct originally because it was an indirect quote / paraphrase. –  Hyperworm Nov 10 '11 at 18:13
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@DaveMG: btw, I read your profile: 頑張ってね、応援していますから。 –  Rudy the Reindeer Nov 11 '11 at 6:59
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@Matt: Thanks. You'll be seeing lots of JLPT related questions from me in the next 3 weeks ;) –  Questioner Nov 11 '11 at 7:24

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