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View Full Version : Can anyone explain the usage of こと in this sentence



UPGRAYEDD
August 7th, 2008, 14:05
この車がガソリンたくさんいることを知っていましたか。
Did you know that this car needs a lot of gas?

I'm not really grasping the usage of koto in this sentence.

Delekii
August 7th, 2008, 15:12
この車がガソリンたくさんいることを知っていましたか。
Did you know that this car needs a lot of gas?

I'm not really grasping the usage of koto in this sentence.
We dont really do the same thing in English, but the koto is just turning the previous sentance into a thing, in this case a thing that someone can know.

In clunky English it would be like saying 'Did you know the thing of this car needing a lot of gas?'

ampersand
August 7th, 2008, 15:15
この車がガソリンたくさんいることを知っていましたか。
Did you know that this car needs a lot of gas?

I'm not really grasping the usage of koto in this sentence.

First, verbs or verb-phrases can't be direct objects, and 知る generally takes an object rather than using the quotative particle と, so ガソリン要る needs to be nominalized, which こと among others can do. Second, こと is 事 which means something like "fact" or "matter", so it works well with knowing. While not idiomatic in English, the example sentence means something like "Do you know the fact that this car needs a lot of gas/petrol?"

Things like this are why I don't like learning Japanese grammar via its English equivalent. That goes for any two languages, actually, though it causes fewer problems the more closely related the languages are.