Verb with two direct objects: 絵を and 私を

Hi.
I have a problem with the sentence 縫いぐるみを見つけてくれた人がね私をモデルに絵を描きたいって!
I think I grasp the general meaning, 'The person that found the cuddly toy says she wants to make a drawing with me as a model." But I can’t understand the structure in the 私をモデルに part.
Which verb has 私を as direct object? Can a verb have two direct objects?
It looks like 私を is the direct object of モデル, doesn’t it?
Thanks!

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Where is this sentence from? Are you sure there isn’t a typo? I think there ought to be a verb like する between the モデルに and the 絵 - that is 私をモデルにする describes 絵 - “A picture which uses me as the model.” (I admit I’m not too sure what that ね is doing in the middle either.)

It does not, no. The direct object doesn’t have to come immediately before the verb.

It comes from the subtitles of the anime 魔女の宅急便. I have checked different subtitles and the sentence is the same…

It’s the AをBに pattern. With A in/on/as B. Here “me as a model”

For me it’s easier to model it as if a the して after に is implied, but they may be some subtle differences between ~を~に and ~を~にして

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Thank you so much! Useful link!

(Also, the fact that it’s spoken language explains the insertion of the ね between the clauses. :slightly_smiling_face: )

I think it‘s the first word that the person says in the quoted sentence:

縫いぐるみを見つけてくれた人が「ね私をモデルに絵を描きたい」って!

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Nah, it’s 縫いぐるみを見つけてくれた人がね [pause for thought-gathering]私をモデルに絵を描きたいって! Citation: I checked it on Netflix. It’s even got the Japanese subtitles here now.

It’s not a direct quotation, incidentally, because she uses 私 to describe the model.

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Ah good point!

Ah, then it’s clear, no? “… this person has … well …”

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Thanks, everybody.
Just another question: Does this AをBに pattern have a name I can look for?

Not that I know of, which make it surprinsgly hard to look up or even be aware of it.

The 日本語表現文型辞典 has an " を~にして" entry but it’s quite limited. The kanzen master N3 has a ~を~に blurb but it’s also very limited.

Actually I don’t think I’ve ever seen a detailed explanation of this pattern, outside a few post on Japanese stack exchange here and there like this one or this one. I would love to see one too.

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I’d just like to add that that pause/use of ね can also be meant for emphasis or getting the listener’s attention. For example, imagine a child saying this

「今日、お姉さんはね、…」
Today, my elder sister, right? She…

(And yeah, so, the speaker being a child explains the somewhat informal use of お姉さん to refer to one’s own family instead of someone else’s.)

Not that I’m aware of, but just be aware that it’s really common. Two examples that tend to come up somewhere in N3-N1 JLPT structures are 〜をもとに (‘using ~ as a basis/raw material’) and 〜を中心に (‘with ~ as the main focus’). In both of those examples, adding して after に is optional.

I honestly think that it doesn’t get explained in detail precisely because it’s so general and can’t really be packaged as a neat grammar point. It’s much easier to work with specific examples, which is what most JLPT books do. What I’d say is that we should just assume that the implied verb form that follows the phrase is して or し, unless it makes no sense. That’s worked for me a lot. The general idea is though… with AをBに(して), someone chooses A for the role/function of B. That’s it. If you’re familiar with the 〜にする structure for indicating choices or decisions, you just need to reapply that knowledge here.

You might later find other examples of 〜を〜に that don’t involve an implied して, but I think you might be able to guess the implied verb at that point. For example, in Beast Tamer (one of the anime that aired during this Fall 2022 season), there’s an incantation that contains the phrase「力をこの手に」. Crunchyroll subs that as ‘Your power in this/my hand’ (I can’t remember which exactly), but it’s more literally ‘power into this hand’. The implied verb could be something like 渡す (‘to hand over’), but the point is that you can tell from context that whatever it is, it involves power entering that hand. The verb is just implied, but with enough experience, you can guess it, or at least get a feel for what it should mean.

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Actually, that’s quite a lot of information that you’ve given me, thanks a lot. :smiley: :smiley: :smiley:

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Just to add to it, some Japanese people on HiNative have just posted
“私をモデルに(して)絵を描きたいって! (して) can be omitted”. So that’s it!
Thanks a looooot for all the information!!!

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Yes, but what gets me is how general it can get. One of the example from stack exchange is “わたしがゴミ袋を手に立ち上がると” (I stood up with a garbage bag in my hand)

I struggle to find a connection with にする. It doesn’t seem to be about choice or decision here, or A for the role/function of B, it seems more like a state or a location thing “with object A in place B” which doesn’t feel very にする? (or maybe my idea about にする are too limited, sometimes する seems to be a catch-all for any kind of verb). I guess here the implied verb is something like 持っていて?

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Yup, I get what you mean, but this is one of those cases where して doesn’t really make sense, right? That’s why I said that sometimes, you’ll run into cases where して can’t be used for interpretation. Here, we have to see if there’s something else available.

Exactly. I would have gone with just 持って, but I’m not sure if that’s the only option. 持っていて doesn’t seem wrong to me, just… perhaps not 100% necessary, since you could also just ‘grasp’ the bag and then stand up? With いて, the idea would be to emphasise that the bag is still being held as one stands up, I think.

EDIT: I did a final check, and surprisingly, 手にする does work. I usually see it in the sense of ‘to get hold of/obtain something’, but Daijirin says that ‘to hold in one’s hand; to take in one’s hand’ is also a possible meaning. So yeah, we could either look for another verb, or look for another possible idiom with する.

EDIT 2: You could probably go with 〜を〜に (multiple times even) with a verb like 置く, actually. ‘Put this here, that there, and this in front of your base.’ Might work for game tutorials, for example.

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Oh nice, thanks for checking! I think I saw 手にする in the sense of “to obtain” before (similar to the ubiquitous 手に入れる) but didn’t know it can also mean plainly “to hold in one’s hand”

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I added this one to Anki with that exact meaning, actually! The context for it was describing a wrestler holding up part of her wrestling gear in a post-match interview: “コスチュームの一部を手にして”, if anyone wants another example.

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Did you mean formal?

Nope, informal. As for why… yes, it’s meant to be polite, sure, but in a formal conversation, you’re not supposed to refer to your own family members with さん when talking to someone from outside the family. You’d use 姉(あね)alone here, for example. It’s ‘against protocol’, in a sense. If you ask me, using these terms to refer to your family members when talking to other people sounds almost like you’re using pet names for them. It’s polite relative to those family members themselves, yes, but in a conversation with other people, using お姉さん doesn’t follow formal conventions (because it would normally, as textbooks say, refer to the other party’s elder sister).

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