Grammar Info

N4 Lesson 8: 11/18

If, When, Whenever, And, [Conditional]


Verb +
[い]Adjective +
[な]Adjective + +
Noun + +


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About と

In the same way as the case marking particle means 'and', sometimes it is translated as 'if'. In these cases, it is considered to be far stronger than , なら, or たら (which express hypothetical outcomes). This is because one of the primary uses of is highlighting a result. In these cases, is actually a conjunction particle, and shows one of three things.
仮定(かてい)順接(じゅんせつ) - A result that is assumed to be true, and obvious.
確定(かくてい)順接(じゅんせつ) - A result that is known to be true.
仮定(かてい)逆接(ぎゃくせつ) - The opposite of a result that is assumed to be true.
Due to this, the (B) part of a phrase using as 'if', will always occur when (A) happens, as it is considered to be the result of (A).
  • (あま)ものいっぱい()(ふと)
    If you eat a lot of sweet things, you will gain weight.
  • 部屋(へや)(きたな)、お(かあ)さんに(おこ)られる
    If my room is messy, my mother will yell at me.
  • 部屋(へや)(しず)(ねむ)ない
    If my room is quiet, I can't sleep.
  • 地下鉄(ちかてつ)、5(ふん)(はや)()
    If it's the subway, you will arrive 5 minutes faster.
may not be used in situations where the (B) result 'might' happen. It must be definite (or close to definite).
  • (はし)けがする
    If I run, I will injure myself. (Unnatural Japanese, unless this person always injures themselves while running for some reason)
In this particular nuance of , despite being translated as 'if', the actual meaning is much closer to 'and', as is expressing that (A) and (B) will always go together.
  • ()()(なに)()ない
    I close my eyes, and I can't see.


  • 勉強(べんきょう)するテスト簡単(かんたん)になる

    If you study, the test will be easy.

  • この(いし)(みが)綺麗(きれい)になる

    If you polish this rock, it will become beautiful.

  • ここから()富士山(ふじさん)全然(ぜんぜん)()ない

    If you look from here, you can't see Mt. Fuji at all.

  • 水着(みずぎ)()って()(わす)れる(うみ)(はい)ない

    If you forget to bring your swimsuit, you won't be able to swim in the ocean.

  • (しゅう)3(かい)トレーニングするだんだん(つよ)くなる

    Whenever you workout three times a week, you gradually get stronger.


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と – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (6 in total)

  • jrmr50


    how do I know when と means if, when or and?

  • Ambo100


    Usually based on context, in some of the examples there is a comma after と.




    You wouldn’t use a comma if you are using と to join nouns.

    と can be used more than once when used to mean ‘and’, unlike in the conditional と.


  • jrmr50


    thank you, explained very clearly…

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