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弟はテレビをつけたままにしておいた

On Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar the translation is My younger brother left the TV on. I do not understand why にしておいた is needed. I checked and it means : do something in advance? What do we need にしておいた for? Is it important?

テレビがついたままになっている

Translation is The TV was turned on and is still on . テレビがついたまま should be enough right? It still makes sense so why do we need the になっている phrase there?

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  • Not a full answer, but the first one is something that is used in a whole lot more situations in Japanese than English, and doesn't always translate well into any sort of direct equivalent. It is important, since "I left the TV on" and "I left the TV on for later" (maybe I'll return to it?) have different implications.
    – user30175
    Apr 21, 2019 at 15:11
  • That means that the しておく is important in the sentence?
    – Shiniboi
    Apr 22, 2019 at 3:26
  • That means that the しておく is important in the sentence?
    – Shiniboi
    Apr 22, 2019 at 3:26
  • Yes, just like how the sentences in English being different is important.
    – user30175
    Apr 23, 2019 at 9:25

1 Answer 1

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まま and ておく play different roles, and ておく in your example has an important meaning. See: What's the meaning of 〜ておきます?

Also note that つける/つく and する/なる are transitive/intransitive pairs.

  • テレビをつけた。
    I turned on the TV.
  • テレビをつけたままにした。
    I left the TV on.
    [maybe without purpose in particular; maybe you were just sleepy]
  • テレビをつけておいた。
    I turned on the TV and left it (in preparation / in case / for someone).
    [the TV had been off; you had a clear reason to do so]
  • テレビをつけたままにしておいた。
    I left the TV on (in preparation / in case / for someone).
    [the TV had been on; you had a clear reason to do so]

Compare:

  • テレビがついたままになっていた。
    テレビがついたままだった。
    The TV was still on (maybe by mistake).
  • テレビがつけてあった
    Someone had turned on the TV (intentionally).
  • テレビがついていた。
    The TV was on.
    [neutral]

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