I would like to know the difference between these two sentences :

先生に10分遅れることを伝えてください。: Tell him (about the fact) that I'll be 10 minutes late

先生に10分遅れると伝えてください。 : Tell him I'll be 10 minutes late...?

I know the difference between the nominalizer 「こと」 and the quotation particle 「と」, but I can't really put the finger on the 意味的な difference.


  • They are same meaning. No difference. – Yuuichi Tam Feb 29 '16 at 3:54

1) 「[先生]{せんせい}に、10[分]{ぷん}[遅]{おく}れる + こと + + [伝]{つた}えてください。」

2) 「先生に、『10分遅れる』 + + 伝えてください。」← Used "imaginary" 『 』 to illustrate the use of quotative 「と」.

In meaning, the two sentences are practically identical. It would be nothing short of nitpicking to say otherwise.

In "feeling", the first sentence sounds just a tiny bit more formal or stiff than the second, but the difference is still quite minimal. The second sentence would sound a little more intuitive to the native ear, but again, the difference is pretty subtle.


They could tell the same situation, but since こと is a nominalizer, using it makes an effect similar to that of English gerund.

先生に10分遅れることを伝えてください。 Please tell the teacher [my] 10 minutes delaying.

先生に10分遅れると伝えてください。 Please tell the teacher [I]'ll be 10 minutes late.

We usually say the latter instead of the former, don't we?

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