In my textbook I learned that when a sentence shall be nominalized, there are these 2 ways.

  1. SENTENCE + こと

  2. SENTENCE + という + こと

2 is in case a complex sentence shall be nominalized.

In addition, when the to be nominalized sentenced ends with a な adjective, it shall be nominalized this way: な adjective + なこと or な adjective + である

Now, concerning this case, there were 2 examples in the grammar section, one for simple sentence and one for a complex sentence.

simple sentence:

世界中でこの漫画が有名な (な/である) こと知っていますか。

complex sentence:

日本に来てから、家族はとても大切 (だ/である) ということに初めて気がついた。

Now, for the complex sentence, would it be possible to write ...家族はとても大切ということ... as well?

My textbook gave me no explanation as to why it only proposes the copula, but not the な suffix DESPITE claiming otherwise just a few lines before :/ Or is it possible that in the nominalization of complex sentences requiring という, it is obligatory to use the copula when the to be nominalized sentence ends with a な adjective?

  • Did you mean to include the な after 有名? One of the selections there could potentially turn into 有名ななこと、which, imperfect though I am, seems grammatically incorrect. I ask because 大切 is also a な-adjective, and I just wanted to clarify your understanding here.
    – ajsmart
    Jun 27, 2017 at 12:48

1 Answer 1



  • 連体形(attributive form) + こと
  • 終止形(predicative/terminal form) + ということ

So grammatically speaking you can use...

  • 有名な+こと (有名な is the attributive form)
  • 有名である+こと (ある is the attributive form)
  • 有名だ+ということ (有名だ is the terminal form)
  • 有名である+ということ (ある is the terminal form)

as in:


As an aside, you could also say:
(or この漫画、有名だって知ってる? in colloquial speech)

would it be possible to write ...家族はとても大切なということ

No, you can't say な+ということ. 大切な is the attributive form and should usually be followed by a noun, as in 大切なこと, 大切な人.

in the nominalization of complex sentences requiring という, it is obligatory to use the copula...

Yes, you should use the terminal form 大切だ or 大切である before という. (You could also say 「大切ということ」「大切と気づいた」「有名ということ」「有名と」「有名って」 etc., dropping the だ. This might sound a bit informal.)

So I think you could say...

(? 家族はとても大切なことに初めて気がついた。 *)
Also: 家族はとても大切だと初めて気がついた。
(or 家族はとても大切だって、初めて気がついた。 in colloquial speech)

*might be a bit strange maybe because it could sound like "Family noticed something important..."

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