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As mentioned in the title, I want to ask the nuance of "こと" in this sentence:

まもなく雪が降ってくることでしょう。

and the possible conditions or reasons that people won't just simply put it as:

まもなく雪が降ってくるでしょう。

  • I speculate the meaning of "こと" in this sentence is「感動・詠嘆を表わす」, but if it is the case, won't the sentence sound too dramatic? – chika Nov 30 '17 at 0:55
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Great question.

「まもなく雪{ゆき}が降{ふ}ってくるでしょう。」

sounds objective and factual. You will hear that in weather forecast.

「まもなく雪が降ってくることでしょう。」

sounds more subjective than the first sentence. It carries an emotion of a sort. You would tend to hear that in some type of prose, poetry, etc.

Without further context, we could not say what kind of feeling, anticipation, excitement or uneasiness the speaker is trying to imply, but we know that the coming of the snow is of some personal importance to the speaker. Perhaps, the speaker has a special kind of memory regarding snow. Only the context and/or the background story would tell us the significance of it.

Since 「こと」 makes it subjective, it can sound somewhat poetic as well, which is why you do not want to hear the second sentence in weather forecast.

  • I've heard say that こと is a word used for an event, or an intangible thing. That falls in line with my understanding of this as example 1 being a stated fact and example 2 being an observation made by the speaker. The mere fact that it is observed puts in a level of connection that can be construed as emotion, which is why it is poetic. Do you think this is this a valid assessment? – psosuna Dec 1 '17 at 1:01

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