Both have the same meaning: "That star is you." But what makes them different? If it's the nuance, what exactly is it?

Context: It's from a song's lyrics, the first one get sang first, whilst the latter get sang later.


だ is the basic form of the copula, so あの星はあなただ is a complete sentence.

で is the continuative form of だ, so あの星はあなたで is not a complete sentence; it leads into whatever follows.

Basically あの星はあなただ is simply "That star is you", whereas あの星はあなたで is more like "That star is you, and..."

  • What makes me wonder is the corresponding line for both of them is exactly the same. “あの星があなたで”/ “あの星はあなただ” 一億年も前から恋してた 泣きそうな顔なんて – Lika Jun 26 '18 at 16:46
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    The fact that the two sentences are followed by one same one doesn't really matter much at least in this case. The で and だ just makes the first sentence more or less connected to the next one. From a semantical point of view, there isn't really a difference between both sentences – Breton Loïc Jun 26 '18 at 17:34
  • does the は vs が topic marker difference change the sense of either expression? – ericfromabeno Jun 26 '18 at 22:29
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    Looking at the lines in context in the song, I noticed that the first instance (with で) is in quotes, whereas the second (with だ) isn't. Put together with the rest of the song, I think the intention might be that the first is supposed to be a fragment from the two characters' conversation in the past (ie. they're looking up at the stars and saying innocent romantic things like "that star is you, and that other star is me...") whereas the second instance with だ is set in the present, when she's looking up at the stars alone remembering, and affirming to herself that that star is still him. – Ben Roffey Jun 27 '18 at 8:33

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