For example, let's say I want to say:

The French use "sushi" to mean "nigirizushi".

Is the following Japanese translation correct?


Thanks in advance!

  • 3
    In this context, if "sushi" is what the French say, I think it would be better to write it in katakana asスシ. The French don't read or write kanji, so 寿司 is certainly not what they use.
    – A.Ellett
    Aug 7, 2017 at 17:31

3 Answers 3


The French use "sushi" to mean "nigirizushi".

I think it'd be more natural to say it as:


But I would probably say it more like:

lit. When the French say sushi, they mean / it refers to nigirizushi.
lit. What the French call sushi, refers to nigirizushi.
フランス人が言う「スシ」とは、握り寿司のことです。 / 握り寿司を指します。
lit. The sushi that the French say, refers to nigirizushi.

or maybe like this:

フランスでは、「スシ」というと握り寿司を指します。 / 握り寿司のことを指します。
lit. In France, when they say sushi, it refers to nigirizushi.


If I were to say this, I would go for something like


This is a bit different than what you were going to say. You could perhaps also say something like.


But, I think this is a bit confusing. For example, does it mean that, when the French say "sushi" while speaking Japanese, they mean "nigiri sushi"? Probably not, but that's what I chose to go with フランス語.

  • 「フランス人スシというとき 」←ここちょっと変えさせてもらってもいいですかね・・
    – chocolate
    Aug 8, 2017 at 3:49
  • @ǝʇɐןoɔoɥƆ Please fix it if it's wrong. Or explain to me what I've done wrong. I'm not sure.
    – A.Ellett
    Aug 8, 2017 at 3:56
  • 従属節なので「フランス人 」にして、「~ときに」のほうに topical 「は」を使って、「フランス人スシというとき 」にした方がいいと思います。でも「フランス人がスシというと」のほうが自然な気がします。(ちなみに「フランス人がスシと言ったら」でもいいと思いますが、口語的な感じがします)
    – chocolate
    Aug 8, 2017 at 4:07
  • @ǝʇɐןoɔoɥƆ ありがとうございます。「フランス人がスシと言っ‌​たら』と書こうと思ったんですが。Back to English, why is it that とき feels more natural to be the topic and not フランス人? I figured that フランス人 was both the subject (and so also the topic) of the subordinate clause and the main clause. Could you explain? (Sorry, while my Japanese reading comprehension is pretty decent, I am not so strong in writing responses in Japanese to you. I guess that's the difference between reading Japanese rather frequently but having not had much opportunity to speak it in for a very long time.)
    – A.Ellett
    Aug 8, 2017 at 4:24
  • @ǝʇɐןoɔoɥƆ Hmmm. OK, on reflecting about this, I think I get exactly what you're saying and why とき is a more natural sounding topic.
    – A.Ellett
    Aug 8, 2017 at 4:29

It's not technically wrong, but maybe something like


is a little more concise.

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