~ので v. ~で / ~て

theseus_

Senior Member
chinese
Context:
(1) ちょうど今ここちゃん(兎)をお母さんに預けていて、いい機会なので、ケージを洗いました。 ---> いい機会で
(2) 今日は夕方から体調が悪くて、吐き気がありました。仕事が終わってからお粥を食べたので、もう寝るつもりです。 ---> お粥を食べて
(3) ここちゃん(兎)は少し疲れているようなので、いっぱい撫でたいですが今日はそっとしておこうと思います。 ---> 少し疲れているようで

I find that "N+なので / V+たので" is of high frequency in texts what I often read lately, and I'm not quite clear how it differs from "N+で / V+て".

I asked someone this question with above examples. In (1), it is said that Japanese speakers rarely say "いい機会で", and in (2), if replace "たので" with "食べて", the meaning will change. But I haven't fully understood it.

I guess "ので" shows reason or grounds, and it seems that "N+で / V+て" also can express cause, then what is the essential difference between them?
 
  • gengo

    Senior Member
    American English
    (1) ちょうど今ここちゃん(兎)をお母さんに預けていて、いい機会なので、ケージを洗いました。 ---> いい機会で
    (2) 今日は夕方から体調が悪くて、吐き気がありました。仕事が終わってからお粥を食べたので、もう寝るつもりです。 ---> お粥を食べて
    (3) ここちゃん(兎)は少し疲れているようなので、いっぱい撫でたいですが今日はそっとしておこうと思います。 ---> 少し疲れているようで

    In all of those, the ので makes it clear that we are talking about a reason. "Because" in English.

    Although the te-form can sometimes convey that meaning, it also has other meanings, so the meaning could become ambiguous if we use that form in every case.

    Changing to the te-form would change the meanings to:
    (1) ...I washed out the cage at a good opportunity.
    (2) ...I had some o-kayu (rice porridge) and plan to go to bed.
    (3) ...seems a little tired and I want to pet him/her a lot, but I think I'll be gentle today.

    In all of those, we lose the reason for the action.

    Maybe someone else can give a better explanation.
     

    SoLaTiDoberman

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    I almost agree with #2, except the (1) sentence.

    なので can indicate that the clause shows the reason for the main clause: "because."
    Te-form has a lot of usages, of course including the reasoning as well but the main function is just simply connecting the two clauses like "and."
    Therefore the meaning may be different, or at least the meaning becomes ambiguous as gengo said. I totally agree with this.

    (1) '
    ちょうど今ここちゃん(兎)をお母さんに預けていて、いい機会でケージを洗いました。

    I think this sentence hardly makes sense, except some area's dialect or something.
    I don't think native speakers would not dare choose the shorter form in this context. It looks weird or funny without the intonation of speech taking into consideration.

    When I read it, I'd probably think that いい機会 might be just a typo of いい機械(器械).
    As a result, the meaning becomes completely different:
    I washed the cage using/with/by a good washing gadget/apparatus/machine. :D
     
    Last edited:

    Joschl

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    SoLaTiDoberman said:
    (1)' ちょうど今ここちゃん(兎)をお母さんに預けていて、いい機会でケージを洗いました。
    I think this sentence hardly makes sense[...].
    I agree with SoLaTiDoberman.

    A noun phrase that will make sense to the majority of native speakers is for instance "その機会 (so-no kikai ni)" in a sentence like "ちょうど今ここちゃん(兎)をお母さんに預けに来ていて、その機会,ケージを洗っています。" A noun phrase with an attributive clause will also work in a sentence such as "ここちゃん(兎)をお母さんに預けた機会ケージを洗いました。"

    In my view, the verbal aspect of the subordinate clause and that of the main clause in these sentences go better together than in the original sentence (1), too.
     

    gengo

    Senior Member
    American English
    ちょうど今ここちゃん(兎)をお母さんに預けていて、いい機会でケージを洗いました。

    I think this sentence hardly makes sense, except some area's dialect or something.

    I agree. That's why my English translation (I washed out the cage at a good opportunity) sounds rather unnatural. I was trying to show that the meaning changes and that the result sounds strange, but maybe my attempt failed.
     
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