A more specific question regarding a reply i got from a more long winded question. Hopefully i can expand this to other situations.


~に破れる means either "to be defeated by ~" or "to be heartbroken regarding ~" depending on the context.

A-kun just like me, is "broken due to" love, ....

compared something such as

血に飽きたときは、まぁ……これで代用できなくもないわね (as a vampire)

During times when i'm "tired of" blood, ...

If I were to rewrite this as:

Aくんも私と同じように, 血に飽きて戦い続けてはいられない.

A-kun just like me, has had enough due to the blood, ...

or is

"A-kun just like me, is tired of the blood, ..." the only way to read it?

Similarly, why can't you read Aくんも私と同じように、恋に破れて泣く日が来るんだろうか as

"A-kun just like me, his love(relationship) is broken, ....

why or why not?

thank you

2 Answers 2


A set phrase is a set phrase. There is normally only one way to interpret it. "Look at the school!" usually means observing the school itself, not observing something else after going to the school, even though a dictionary clearly says at marks the place where the action happens. It's because to look at X is an English set phrase. By convention, the combination of look and at has a fixed meaning. Likewise, "I'm interested in the room" does not usually mean I feel interested while I am sitting in the room.

X飽きる almost always translates to to be tired of X or to get bored with X. These are fixed set phrases with the shared fixed meaning. You have to memorize them. Although the Japanese particle に and the English prepositions of/with have lots of functions, practically speaking, there is no ambiguity here.

That being said, sometimes a combination of a verb and a particle has more than one meaning depending on the noun used with it. The function of に in 暗闇に光る and the function of に in 汗に光る are different. The function of に in ブラジルに敗れる and the function of に in サッカーの試合に敗れる are different. Again, this is something you have to memorize.

  • do you mind expanding on 敗れる? Is it the difference between: (Xは)サッカーの試合に敗れる - (X) lost in regards to the soccer match" and (Xは) ブラジルに敗れる - X lost "to" brazil?
    – charu
    Commented Nov 9, 2018 at 3:31
  • 1
    ブラジルに敗れる is "to be defeated by Brazil" or "to lose to Brazil"; 試合に敗れる is "to lose the match" without any preposition (...according to a dictionary. I'm still learning English and I always have to look up in a dictionary to confirm the correct preposition...)
    – naruto
    Commented Nov 9, 2018 at 3:37
  • I was trying to be more literal with respect to Japanese, since the 試合 itself can't lose, only X can "lose". Which is why I admit (Xは)サッカーの試合に敗れるる is just slightly confusing. Because X is still the one that is losing, but it really doesn't work well in English became you can both "lose the match" and "lose to an opponent".
    – charu
    Commented Nov 9, 2018 at 3:47
  • 1
    Let's not try to "be as literal as possible" at the preposition/particle level; it's too random, too arbitrary, too unpredictable both in English and in Japanese. You can try to be literal at the phrase level. Like it or not, Aは試合に敗れた translates to "A lost the game", and this is something to be memorized.
    – naruto
    Commented Nov 9, 2018 at 4:12
  • 1
    に in ブラジルに敗れる is this に, although I have no idea whether "agent" is the correct term.
    – naruto
    Commented Nov 9, 2018 at 4:35

I'm not really sure what are you asking about, but 血に飽きたときは、まぁ……これで代用できなくもないわね means "when you are fed up with blood, you could substitute this (for blood)", and Aくんも私と同じように, 血に飽きて戦い続けてはいられない means "A-kun, just like me, can no longer keep fighting after being fed up with blood".

Likewise, Aくんも私と同じように、恋に破れて泣く日が来るんだろうか means "Will A-kun get his heart broken and cry someday just like me?".

  • the point was to examine if a change in context/sentence structure could involve a different way to interpret it. In this case it does not, but as naruto pointed out, some cases it does.
    – charu
    Commented Nov 9, 2018 at 19:59

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