I came across a definition of a word 権限 in a dictionary (三省堂 スーパー大辞林):


However, am not sure if I should read the bolded clause as

((ある範囲のことを正当に行うこと)が(できるもの)として与えられている) or


In other words, does Xこと modify できる or 与えられている, and why?

  • It would simply be ((ある範囲のことを正当に行うこと)ができるものとして)与えられている能力。 Also how would you translate both your sentences? The を after the 範囲のこと cannot work with 与えられている that it the later is in passive form. – oldergod Aug 29 '15 at 13:23
  • 3
    「{(『ある範囲のことを正当に行うことができる』ものとして)与えられている}能力」ってことで、「(『ある範囲のことを正当に行うことができる』(ものとしての)能力が与えられる」つまり、与えられるものは「ある範囲のことを正当に行うことができる能力」ってことで・・・ – Chocolate Aug 30 '15 at 2:37

「ある範囲のこと」を 「正当に行うことができるもの」として 与えられている 能力

The ability to be able to grant「a certain range of dealings」as 「actions that can be undertaken legitimately」

Alternatively, 「ある範囲のことを正当に行うこと」が「できるもの」として 与えられている能力

The central problem here seems to be whether 与えられている here should take を or が as it can be either a passive or potential construction.

Moreover, when isolating a noun phrase into the subject of a relative clause, Japanese does not distinguish whether it originally is a direct object, indirect object or some other adverbial phrase (for example noun phrases in で), so even taking を in a passive construction is theoretically possible, as nothing prevents 能力 to be parsed as an indirect object:

*「あることを 能力に 与える」

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In other words, does Xこと modify できる or 与えられている, and why?

ある範囲のこと (something in a given scope)


[V-ru ことができる] is a fixed expression meaning "able to do V"

行うことができる is the same as 行える (おこなえる) = able to cast/do/make-an-event-take-place

与えられている能力 (this construction pins "ability to do so" or "potential of being able to do [all the prior stuff]).

hope that helps

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Doesn't the sentence imply a potential doer of ある範囲のこと, who is the grantee of the 能力 to do such?


Supplemented with the missing person, it should translate to:

"the power granted to a person who is thought of as being able to perform justly a certain range of dealings"

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