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I found this sentence in Japanese literature:

ぐすぐすしていて、災難にあったらことだ。

Does anyone know what is the meaning of "~たらことだ"?

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This こと (事 in kanji) is a regular noun meaning "a serious matter", "a bad trouble". ~たらことだ means "it's very bad if ~" or "will run into trouble if ~". Practically, you can learn the following set phrases:

  • (~ては/たら) + こと + だ/になる (this こと is interchangeable with 大問題, 大事, etc)
  • ことを起こす to cause trouble
  • ことが起きる something bad happens

    ことが起きてからでは遅い。
    If an accident happens, it's too late.


こと

2 大変な事態。重大な出来事。「失敗したら事だ」「ここで事を起こしたら苦労が水の泡だ」

2. incident; occurrence; event; something serious; trouble; crisis​

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