So imagine I get asked this question, perhaps when calling someone: 図書館...何をしている。 Perhaps I am reading a book, so: [僕は]としょかん...本を読んでいる。 Here is the problem. For "...", I am conflicted on whether to use で or に in each instance and in general. I know that being at a location is に, and doing an action at a location is で, but what of this sentence pattern? Are there specific cases for whether to use one or the other?


You are talking about some action that is taking place in the 図書館, so you have to use で.


There is a subsidiary verb いる used to express progressive "-ing", but it doesn't interfere with this rule.

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  • Thank you, but how come the exception "placeに勤めています"? – BigRigz Aug 20 '19 at 3:01
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    ^ It should be more like 「companyに勤めています」"work for a company", 「placeで働いています」"work in a place", no? eg 「運送会社に勤めています」「大阪で働いています」 – Chocolate Aug 20 '19 at 3:08
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    @BigRigz The particle に is both 1) a location marker used with existence verbs like ある, and 2) a destination marker. ~に勤めています is used in the latter meaning. – naruto Aug 20 '19 at 3:18
  • Okay, thank you both. – BigRigz Aug 20 '19 at 3:23
  • Wait, sorry. @naruto, what do you mean by "destination marker"? – BigRigz Aug 20 '19 at 3:25

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