What does しようとした mean?


So, here is this sentence


And the translation given is

She tried to concentrate on her food, but her hands shook and her face was starting to burn with anger.

But I cannot understand WHAT exactly is しようとした

Obviously I can see how it is translated, but I’m interested to know the underlying stuff, how it is formed and what it actually means.

I wasn’t able to find any grammar points on this or any specific translations.


集中 concentration
集中する to concentrate
集中しよう let’s concentrate (volitional form)
~ようとする to try to do something (volitional form + とする)
集中しようとする to try to concentrate
集中しようとした tried to concentrate



Grammar Form 「ようとする」

The source defines it as “Be About To, About to try to”.

Source: https://www.renshuu.org/index.php?page=grammar/individual&id=87

So I guess the sentence could be read as “She was about to concentrate on eating but…”


So, it’s combination of those two separate grammar points.
Thank you for the explanation! That’s what I was looking for!