I'm trying (to no avail) to translate this sentence: まだいたとはね.

I think it means something along the lines of here we go again, but I'm not sure.

I don't really understand what いた means here. Is it a conjugation of 居る? (The context was two guys walk up to the main characters after the previous two were defeated and start to talk about their plans, then one of the main characters says the above sentence.)

Furthermore, what does the とは mean? I suspect it is the quotative と plus the contrastive は, but the sentence as a whole still doesn't make sense to me.

  • 1
    I explained this here: japanese.stackexchange.com/questions/30158/… See my example sentence about the Yankee win using 「とは」 at the end without a verb following it. – l'électeur Jan 8 '16 at 10:54
  • I think I'be got it. Going off that link, the most appropriate translation would be: Whoa! There were actually more of these guys! (Where toha indicates surprise.) Is this right? – pgt42 Jan 8 '16 at 11:24
  • とは stands for something like とは思わなかった – oals Jan 11 '16 at 17:25

I think there is technically enough information in the comments and answers for this to be answered, but as none of the answers has been accepted I'll write it out a bit clearer.

As oals indicated, the "とは” at the end of a sentence (possibly before a ね or な) means "とは思わなかった", which indicates surprise about a state. Note here that は is used after the と because it expresses something negative, which is a common pattern with the は particle.

A similar pattern is ~なんて which can be used to express surprise about something (i.e. こんなに難しいなんて”)

まだ means "still" when used in a positive sentence, and いた comes from 居た (a form of 居る, which generally means a living thing exists or is present). While this seems like the past tense, it is technically the "modal た", which you can read more about here. This usage is seen in other cases, like when you say "あった" when you find something you were looking for.

There are many ways to translate this, and I think that those in ironsand's answer aren't bad. However, assuming the context implies "you", one other way to say this would be:

I'd never have guessed you were still here.

Correction: changed description of "ta" from "past" to "modal" based on feedback from l'électeur.

  • By calling it "past tense", you are making the same mistake others have made. It is the modal た, not the past tense た. – l'électeur Feb 8 '16 at 3:34
  • 1
    Thanks very much for pointing that out. I assume you are talking about what you said in your post here:(japanese.stackexchange.com/questions/21347/…). I will update my answer to reflect that. – Locksleyu Feb 8 '16 at 15:40

I'd translated the sentence Oh, you are still here!? or Oh, he/she/they are still here!?.

I'm not sure I understand context what you wrote though.


まだいた is 'was still there' - the とは part is conveying surprise, that something went against the speakers expectations. The ね part is adding emphasis / seeking agreement with the listener.

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