るところだった vs たところだ

thetazuo

Senior Member
Chinese - China
ともあれ、ここが自宅でよかった。もしこんなところを誰かに見られていたなら、狂三は絶対にバレない死体の処理方法を調べねばならなくなるところだった

狂三 didn’t want others to see her wearing Lolita dress. (The following text says 士道 accidentally opened the door to her room and saw 狂三 dressing in Lolita fashion)

Hi. I was taught that both 「たら……るところだった」and 「たら……たところだ」are fixed constructions expressing counterfactual situations. So can we change the bold part into なったところだ or なっていたところだ? If we can, what would be the difference between るところだった and たところだ?
Thank you.
 
  • Joschl

    Member
    Japanese
    No, you can’t replace "tokoro dat-ta" with "tokoro da" because Kurumi is imagining the result of something that didn't happen in the past. If you replace "[verb-(r)u] tokoro" with "[verb-ta] tokoro", you will change the aspect of that verb from 'to be close to [doing]/to be just about to [do]' to 'to have just [done]'. If you replace "[verb-te] i-ru tokoro" with "[verb-te] i-ta tokoro", you will change the aspect of that verb from 'to be in the middle of [doing]' to 'to have been [doing] (perfective!)'.
     
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    thetazuo

    Senior Member
    Chinese - China
    Thank you. But we are dealing with the construction「たら……たところだ」, not just「……たところだ」. The former is a hypothetical conditional and can be used for a counterfactual situation in the past, as in this link and this one. The latter is just like「……たばかりだ」.
     

    Joschl

    Member
    Japanese
    I know what the grammaticalized construction above is meant to indicate. I only told you that you would change the tense of the sentence by change the copula after "tokoro" from "dat-ta" to "da" and you would change the aspect of the verb in the attributive clause before "tokoro" by changing its form. Because you also know that Kurumi is imagining the result of something that didn't happen in the past, you can "conditionalize" all the sentences that you can make by changing the verb form within the attributive clause before "tokoro" just as you wish.
     
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