Grammar Info

N1 Lesson 5: 2/17


Even if, If


Verb[たら](1) + Verb[た]+
[い]Adjective[たら](2) + [い]Adjective(3) +
[な]Adjective + なら + [な]Adjective +

(1) Verb[ば]
(2) [い]Adjective[ば]
(3) [い]Adjective[た]


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About たら〜で

たら〜で is an expression that appears with repeating words, and may be used either positively or negatively in order to show that 'if (A), then with (A), (B)'. It is often simply translated as 'even if (A), (B)'.
たら〜で may use either the conjunction particle たら or ば when paired with verbs or い-Adjectives, but will use なら when paired with な-Adjectives.
  • ニートになったらなった大変(たいへん)だと(おも)うよ。
    Even if you become a NEET, I think it would still be tough.
  • 明日(あした)(あめ)()()ったでなんとかすればいい。
    If it rains tomorrow, we can do something about it.
  • (おお)きい(ほう)荷物(にもつ)とかいっぱい()めるけど、(おお)きかったら(おお)きいデメリットがある。
    The bigger the car, the more luggage it can carry, but if the car is big, there are many disadvantages.
  • (ちから)がなくてもできる仕事(しごと)沢山(たくさん)あるから、(よわ)けれ(よわ)いい。
    There are plenty of jobs that can be done even if you are weak.
  • (いや)なら(いや)最初(さいしょ)っから()ってくれればよかったのに。
    If you didn't want to, you should've let me know beforehand.
In たら〜で constructions, it is important to remember that the nuance will change depending on the first half of the sentence. Basically, the most common interpretations are as follows.
In the good situation of (A), the problem of (B) will arise.
In the problematic situation of (A), (B) can still be done.
So in either case, it can be seen that (B) will be something that is contradictory to (A).
In this meaning, なら~で will only ever follow な-Adjectives. If you see なら〜で following another type of word, then it will be the meaning used for showing dissatisfaction, or telling people what to do.
  • ()なら()、はっきりと(つた)えなくちゃ。
    If you like them, you have to tell them clearly that you like them. (This grammar point's meaning)
  • ()めるなら()めるいいけど、(あと)からやっぱりやめなければよかったとかって()わないでね。
    If you want to quit, then go ahead and quit, but don't say later that you wish you hadn't quit after all. (The other なら~で meaning)


  • 結婚(けっこん)したい。」

    'I want to marry…'
    'Even if you get married, it's (still) tough.'

  • 「また子供(こども)になりたいな。」

    'I want to be a child again…'
    'But, children have problems of their own even if you become (are) one.'

  • (かね)沢山(たくさん)あったらあった(なや)みも()えるものだ。」

    'Even if you have a lot of money, problems will also multiply.'
    'That might be right, but even if you don't have any, then it's (still) troublesome.'

  • 「もし失敗(しっぱい)たら失敗(しっぱい)した、また最初(さいしょ)からやり(なお)そう(おも)。」

    'Even if I fail, I will do it again from the beginning.'

  • 「ったく、いつも(かれ)は、(あめ)()たら()った(そと)()かけられない』と文句(もんく)()し、()たら()(あつ)(あつ)」と文句(もんく)()。」

    'Good grief, if it rains, he always complains that he cannot go outside, and if it's sunny he always complains that it's really hot.'

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たら〜で – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (2 in total)

  • Dinasaur99


    I don’t know if I fully understand the Japanese logic to this grammar point.
    What is the で doing gramatically?

    run-if ran-??

    Any help would be appreciated, thank you.

  • nekoyama


    The で marks a scope or topic for the following comment.

    Since で is not often used in this way directly after a verb, maybe it helps to think of it as a shortcut that’s leaving out something before the で, such as ところ or 場合 or ということ. I’m not saying that that’s where this pattern comes from (I have no idea), but I think it’s similar.

    Or in English:
    Assuming that I run, in a situation where I ran, (…comment on what happens when I run).

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