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I am not sure what the word 通す means in the context of 「声を落とせ。既に目は通してある。」(Lower your voice. I've already looked it over).

On Jisho, it says 通す means "to stick through" or "to (look, listen) through (a window, wall, etc.)​," etc., but I do not know how these definitions apply here. Is there something else, some other nuance, going on here? How does 既に目は通してある translate to "I've already looked it over."? I do not understand...

2 Answers 2

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目を通す is a common idiom you have to remember, but this 通す is a transitive verb that means "to pass (something)" or "to let (something) pass through". It's used like this:

  • パイプに水を通した。
    I passed water through the pipe.
  • このフィルムは水は通さないが空気は通す。
    This film doesn't let water pass but lets air pass.

So the literal meaning of 書類に目を通す is something like "to pass one's eyes through the document" or "to make one's eyes go through the document". I think you can now imagine why the idiom conveys the action of skimming a document to get a general sense of its content.

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目は通して is related to the phrase 目を通す which means "to look over". Changing out は for を can be seen as setting the overall topic and or emphasis / comparison to something else (e.g I looked over this thing, but not the other thing).

It's also in the て form here and paired with ある to mean "has been done" or "X is in a resulting state". So 目は通してある is "It has been looked over / at"

既に is simply just "already".

So in full we have

声を落とせ。既に目は通してある。

Lower your voice. I've already looked it over.

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