で particle or the copula?

I sometimes find it difficult to figure out which one is which like in this sentence: 緊張で目が合わせられない。
I assume this is the copula, but I’m not totally sure and would like some confirmation to calm down my ocd. Thanks :wink:

I vote particle. You give the reason for the rest of the sentence.

3 Likes

I thought that で as a particle is used to show by what means an action is done and/or where it takes place. So this also includes emotions like 緊張? The 緊張 here feels more like it’s linked like an “and” to me.

The usage I found first in my book was 地震でビルが倒れた or something similar. Maybe you have seen that usage already? This usage here should be the same

【一】[格助]《格助詞「にて」の音変化名詞名詞的なに付く

動作作用原因・理由を表す。「受験勉強暇がない」「君のおかげ―助かった

That’s the relevant part of the monolingual definition. Maybe you can understand it. It gives the reason/cause for a behavior or action.

The means meaning of で is a different one and exists as well.

7 Likes

Thanks for clearing that up for me!

You can also tell it’s not the copula because if it was you would be saying “緊張です”, which isn’t generally how you say “I’m/he is/etc stressed”, which is normally 緊張している.

4 Likes

This topic was automatically closed 365 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.