In 合格できる N3 (page 28), I found the following exercise:

海外{がいかい}旅行{りょこう}で、習{なら}った英語{えいご}が(   )ときは、とてもうれしかった。

1.通{とお}した    2.詰{つ}めた    3.抜{ぬ}けた    4.通{つう}じた

I have to fill in with the correct word.

My problems:

1.even though I know the meaning of every word from the main sentence, I just can't linked them together in order to make sense to me. So I can't come up with a clear meaning for the phrase I have to complete. Even so, looking at the given option I eliminated 2 and 3 and now I'm stuck with 1 and 4.

2.I don't know the meaning of 通{とお}した and 通{つう}じた. I mean I looked in more than a dictionary for definitions and I've searched for sentences where they are used (jisho, tatoeba...), but I don't get how one of these words can fit in this phrase.

Can you please explain me the mechanics behind this phrase and how/when to use 通{とお}した and 通{つう}じた?

Thank you.

1 Answer 1


To use the dictionary, you need to de-inflect them. Both are given in past tense in the problem but you need them in the present "dictionary"-form to look them up:

[通]{とお}した is the past tense of [通]{とお}す

[通]{つう}じた is the past tense of [通]{つう}じる

通す -> to persist, to make way for

通じる -> best definition = to convey or communicate

Given these definitions, the clear winner is to convey one's meaning.

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