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I've always known that と may be used as a particle that is required for the formation of a conditional phrase or to quote someone's speech. So, what is the function of the last particle in the following sentence?

なぜと申しますと

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「なぜと[申]{もう}します

In this case, 「と」at the end is a conjunctive particle that serves as a preface to the statement that follows.

Thus, the only statement that can logically follow 「なぜと[申]{もう}します」 is one that explains the reason for whatever is being discussed.

The 「と」 in 「なぜと」, by the way, is quotative in case anyone is wondering. So we have two different kinds of 「と」 used in such a short phrase.

Usually, the entire sentence will look like:

「なぜと[申]{もう}しますと、~~~~からです。」 =

"To tell you the reason, it is/was because ~~~~."

(This might sound off-topic, but in real life, saying 「なぜと申しますと」 is definitely more common than saying 「なぜと申しますと」. That, however, makes no difference in the function of 「と」 at the end.)

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I’m not grammarian. So I don’t know how to call the function of ‘と’ on strict grammatical term. But なぜ(か)と申しますと’can be translated as ‘I say because (it is ...) / The reason why I’m saying so is that …./ If you ask me why, it is because ….”

“と” here works as a conjunction – correct me if I’m wrong - of “なぜ(か)” and “申します.” In the same token “と” is used as conjunction following the preceding sentence or unspoken sentence in such way as “と言うことで、今日はお開きにしましょう, meaning “So, let’s close today’s (meeting). “と” can be used as well in the frequently used phrase, particularly toward yearend, “何かと忙しい- Somehow I’m busy” to give the latitude of nuance in saying “I’m very busy.”

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    「なぜか・・・」の「と」(❶格助詞 #2 『引用の「と」』) について回答していらっしゃるようですが、 質問者のKsAさんは「・・・申します 」の「と」(❷接続助詞 #5) についてお尋ねのようです。(「what is the function of the last particle in the following sentence」とおっしゃっているので) – Chocolate Jan 2 '16 at 7:39
  • choco-san. Thanks for your pointing out the issue. In fact, I don't know whether "と" of "…申しますと" is ❷接続助詞 #5 in Japanese grammar system, or not. But I think it corresponds to "because" in "Why (if you ask me)? it' because .... namely .the conjunction in Englsh grammar. – Yoichi Oishi Jan 2 '16 at 9:39
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    接続助詞「と」のこの用法の例文をいくつか見てみると分かりやすいかもしれません。「率直に言う Frankly speaking, 」(と言って率直な意見を述べる)、「簡単に言う Put plainly,」(と言って簡単な表現で言い換える)、「言い換える In other words,」(と言って別の言い方で述べる) 、「正直に言う To be honest,」「要約する / 手短に言う To sum up / In short,」、「なぜかと言う To tell you the reason, / If you ask me why」(と言って理由を述べる) ・・・という感じです。" if you ask me" >> 接続助詞 conjunctive particle と呼ばれる通り、接続助詞「と」自体は conjunction/接続詞 "if" や "when" に似た意味になると思います。 – Chocolate Jan 3 '16 at 4:09

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