I was listening to the Final Fantasy X soundtrack the other day, specifically the famous track To Zanarkand which has the Japanese title of ザナルカンドにて and I realized I don't have a clue what function the にて is playing in that title.

I realize the title translates as "To" as in the direction one is heading to, but I would have expected that to be either へ, に, or 途中. I don't fully trust that にて actually means "To" because other title translations for these soundtracks have, in the past, been translated liberally.

What exactly is this にて and what is its function to translate the phrase with "To"? What does it actually mean, and how? Also, how does this にて come to be in the language?

1 Answer 1


にて is simply a formal way of saying で (as in the particle for location or means). It's common in announcements and official documents. I don't know its linguistic history, but if you search the web you can occasionally see the name of this song translated as "In Zanarkand" or "At Zanarkand", which is more literally. I think "To Zanarkand" just sounds more dramatic in English.

  • That answered all the questions in one fell swoop. Thanks!
    – psosuna
    Jun 19, 2019 at 23:48

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