I've just begun reading the Doraemon manga. Coming across this phrase, I've searched for its meaning but have been unable to find anything helpful so far. An English translation of the manga suggests the phrase might mean "what are you here for?", which certainly fits the context, and of course "なに" I am familiar with. However, I do not understand what role "しに" plays, as this seems to only directly translate as "death".

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  • 1
    This corresponds quite well with the informal English sentence "(And) to do what...?", where し is the form of する corresponding to "do".
    – Mark S.
    Apr 24, 2022 at 20:11

1 Answer 1


It's a truncated 何をしに来たんだ? (What did you come here for?)

With the back half cut off and the particle を omitted, it becomes なにしに

  • Ah, I see. Is it because 来たんだ was used in just the previous sentence that it can be truncated like so?
    – egglog
    Apr 23, 2022 at 20:49
  • 6
    @egglog It doesn't have to be that. Omission is very common in colloquial speech as long as the listener/reader is expected to understand the meaning, so even if 来たんだ didn't appear in the preceding line, なにしに should be understood without a hitch in this context.
    – Eddie Kal
    Apr 23, 2022 at 21:03

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