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I'm reading this article about a peace ceremony held in Nagasaki.

There is a sentence that uses a , but I do not understand the meaning entirely. I believe the is being used as an "and" but I don't know why or how. I have only seen used as an "and" when its is between two nouns like

猫と犬

Cat and dog

If I am correct is it because the is between two relative clauses?

Sentence: 去年からの1年に亡くなった人亡くなっていたことがわかった人は3511人です。

My Translation: Since last year, people that have died in the year and people who understood the event that were dying are 3511.

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Here the と is between two noun phrases. (The noun phrases are 亡くなった人 and 亡くなっていたことがわかった人.) Noun phrases can behave exactly like nouns, so in 猫と犬 you can replace the nouns 猫 and 犬 by more complicated noun phrases.

Indeed, both noun phrases consist of a noun (in both cases 人) modified by a sentence ending in a verb and this structure is often translated using a relative clause in English.

You only asked about the grammar of と, but let me also remark that your translation is too literal. For

亡くなった人は5人です。

I think it would be more natural to say

Five people died.

rather than

People who died are five (persons).

  • I know the OP didn't ask, but could you talk about 亡くなっていたことがわかった人? I'm unconvinced by the OP's translation. I would have translated as "people who were found to have died", but I can't see the difference between people who died since last year and people who were found to have died since last year. So why does it need both phrases? – user3856370 Aug 12 '18 at 17:09
  • Could it be 'people who knew they were dying'? or 'people who were known to be dying'? – BJCUAI Aug 12 '18 at 17:10
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    @user3856370 I agree with you and think the meaning is actually not immediately obvious, but I guess it refers to the people who died last year and the people who during the last year were found to have died in previous years — e.g. people whose death was recorded/reported only in 2017, but whose actual death occurred in 2016 or earlier (for example because they died abroad and their family did not report their death to the Japanese authorities straight away). – Earthliŋ Aug 12 '18 at 22:26

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