The younger sister is holding on to the climbing frame, trapped by a wild dog. The older sister is rushing to the rescue:

Sister, don't come over here. It's dangerous.
You're my little sister, ???

I assume this はなして is from 放す = to release/to let go/to set free. I'm not familiar with the usage of this verb and I was a bit puzzled by the verb ending. I assume the meaning is "I will set you free (rescue you)" and that in ends in て because the sentence is unfinished. Would I be correct that the full sentence is something like 放してもらって下さい?

But I also thought that it might be an instruction to "let go (release grip)" of the climbing frame.

Aside from the fact that letting go of the frame would seem like a poor idea, are both of these interpretations possible? In a situation of panic is this completely unambiguous?

  • 2
    A guess: She's shouting at the dog?
    – Angelos
    Jan 4 '17 at 15:30
  • @Nothingatall I hadn't thought of that. If I change "You're" to "That's" then that makes a lot of sense. I wonder if that's the only valid interpretation though? Jan 4 '17 at 15:41
  • 2
    ^ 引きとめる人に対して、「She's my sister, so let me go (to help her)」って言ってるんじゃないですかね・・・もうちょっと文脈欲しいですね、その場面の絵とか・・・
    – Chocolate
    Jan 4 '17 at 15:42
  • @chocolate I thought about "you're my sister. Let me help you", but then I got confused with causative form and how I would extend はなして to have that meaning. I guess with your translation I don't need to worry about that. It's a simple 'release me' command. Jan 4 '17 at 15:49

I think the elder sister is yelling this either to the dog:

That is my sister! Release her!

Or to someone else who is trying to stop her from helping her sister:

That is my sister! Release me!

  • When I read further the second option seems quite convincing. I'd never have thought of it myself though. I was trapped by thinking You're my sister. I assume my own suggestions are not valid at all then? Jan 4 '17 at 16:00
  • @user3856370 There is no point in saying "You are my sister!" here :)
    – naruto
    Jan 4 '17 at 16:05
  • There is certainly no point. But, it would still be a perfectly natural thing to say in English. "You're my sister (so) I want to help you". Maybe the Japanese are just more economical with words. Jan 4 '17 at 16:12
  • 2
    @user3856370 Using so-called "explanatory の" means she's actually trying to convince someone with that fact, so "I wanna/will help you" cannot follow it naturally. But she could have said something like 「私の妹なのよ、自分でなんとかしなさいっ」 to her younger sister :)
    – naruto
    Jan 4 '17 at 16:21
  • @user3856370 If it was used like that, it would more likely be 「あなたは私の妹なのよ」 so that the "you're" is being stressed.
    – Jimmy
    Jan 4 '17 at 18:24

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