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All About Japanese Particles: とは (to wa)

[Serie: All About Japanese Particles]

1. Indicates a word or phrase being defined, or for which a defi-nition is being asked.

UN to wa, kokuren no koto desu.
“UN” refers to the United Nations.

Rida no jōken to wa nan deshō ka.
What are the prerequisites of leadership?

*2. Used between two clauses that are opposed in meaning; the first clause represents a concession to the second (usually in the form to wa ie): “though, even though.”

Seifu o shin’yō shite inai to wa ie, seifu no yarikata ni shitagawanai wake ni wa ikanai.
Even though you don’t trust the government, you [still] have to adhere to its way of doing things. / You may not trust the government, but you must still adhere to its ways of doing things.

Haru to wa ie mada samui.
Even though it’s spring, its still cold.

– Source: All about particles – A handbook of Japanese function words


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