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お世話になった (osewa ni natta) 
25th-Nov-2014 09:15 pm

Hi everyone!

I have a question about the phrase "osewa ni natta".
I've always been confused because it technically means "Thank you for your help." but I also see translations like "I've troubled you." Which is more accurate in the literal sense?

Also, can "osewa ni natta" pertain to non-living things? Or abstract things?
I was reading a manga and I read this line but never really understood it:
My loose translation is: "What was the wild idea that had helped me that much?"
But it kinda sounds weird. Am I reading this the wrong way? Should this be two separate sentences?
Like アレだけお世話になった。妄想とは何だったのか。???


25th-Nov-2014 05:29 pm (UTC)
i know nothing

so i know

ni and na is NAY AND NAW
27th-Nov-2014 07:03 am (UTC)
Well, so, お世話になった is what you say to acknowledge that someone has helped you out in some significant or sustained way, right? Usually this also involves feelings of gratitude, obligation, and that you have imposed on them by requiring/requesting their help.
I'm betting that it's this last one that caused it to be translated as "I've troubled you." Especially if the help provided was arduous or the recipient requested it. And I'm guessing the translator was native Japanese--aside from being slightly weird English, that sounds way more in line with the culture that sometimes says すみません where English speakers say "thank you".

As for お世話 with non-living things--I'm not native, but it seems really strange to me because abstract/inanimate things can't provide the kind of active taking-care-of that お世話 usually means. For that sort of situation I'd use __のおかげで instead.

So regarding アレだけお世話になった妄想とは何だったのか, I'd parse that as having the entire phrase "アレだけお世話になった" being a modifier for 妄想, as "The delusion that I had been helped so much". They've realized they haven't really been helped all that much and are considering why they thought they had been.

Edit: Regarding the literal meaning of お世話になった, it's like "I have been in your care." But the literal meaning is also about as unimportant as the literal meaning of "you're welcome" is.

Edited at 2014-11-27 07:08 am (UTC)
27th-Nov-2014 03:30 pm (UTC)
Thank you for your reply!

I think the reason why I found お世話になった so confusing is that the translation "Thank you for your help" seems very lacking. In order to deeply understand the phrase, I wanted to see the roots and how it evolved from there. "I have been in your care." translates the context perfectly.

Yeah, I'm not familiar with お世話になる being used for abstract concepts either. おかげで seemed more appropriate for me as well, but based from your previous explanation, I think お世話になる conveys more of an indebted feeling rather than just appreciation?

For that sentence, if we're including indebtedness, should it be like this:
"What was that delusion that was so helpful in getting me here?" or "What was that delusion that really helped get me here?" Something like that?

Edited at 2014-11-27 03:31 pm (UTC)
27th-Nov-2014 03:53 pm (UTC)
For that sentence, if we're including indebtedness, should it be like this:

Er, neither? Absent an unusual context, I still very much think that the phrasal-modifier parse is the correct one for that sentence. The person is not indebted to a delusion--they had a delusion of being indebted (to someone else).

Edited at 2014-11-27 03:56 pm (UTC)
1st-Dec-2014 06:45 am (UTC)
Japanese "sewa " has many meaning.
"help "
"assist "
"aid "
"serve "
"facilitate "

Therefore we often use a non-creature.

Then, when "sewa" uses as slang, it sometimes means the act of helping to increase the (sexual) excitement.

may be meant.
1st-Dec-2014 09:48 am (UTC)
Oh cool! I didn't know it could be used in that context. That clears up a lot of things.

I understand it better now. Thank you very much for your help!
2nd-Dec-2014 09:18 am (UTC)
...I think I am never going to use this phrase again. >_<
2nd-Dec-2014 01:25 pm (UTC)
Oh. Don't worry so much.
Slang is slang.
We usually use original meaning.
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