Grammar Info

N3 Lesson 3: 14/22


Speaking of, If it were the case that


Noun + ()えば(1)

(1) ()うと()ったら


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About といえば

()えば, と()うと, and と()ったら are all expressions that are translated quite closely to 'speaking of (A)', or 'if it were the case that (A)'. Each of these structures has a slightly different nuance, but are largely used in the same situations.
()えば - More hypothetical, 'were it (A)'.
()うと - More concrete, 'if it's (A)'.
()ったら - More situational, 'when it's (A)'.
These constructions are most commonly used after nouns, in response to something that has already been mentioned in the conversation (usually by someone else). The thing that has already been said is quite often the 'trigger' for someone remembering something, causing them to interject with と()えば.
  • (なつ)()えばスイカバーでしょ!
    If we're talking (about) summer, it's gotta be a Suika-bar, don't you think? (Suika-bars are the best thing when it is summer, don't you think)
  • タナカさんというと先月(せんげつ)銀行(ぎんこう)強盗(ごうとう)(つか)まった(ひと)ですね。
    Speaking of Tanaka-san, he is the person that got arrested for robbing a bank right?
  • ラーメン?日本(にほん)()ったら寿司(すし)(ほう)人気(にんき)でしょう
    Ramen? If it's Japan (we're talking about), sushi is more popular, isn't it?
Although these phrases are used in response to something that has already been mentioned, their purpose is to change the topic of the conversation somehow (or to add new information), rather than continuing along with the same subject.
  • (なつ)()ったら(まつ)りだから明日(あした)(まつ)一緒(いっしょ)()かない
    Speaking of summer, since it's a festival, do you want to go to the festival tomorrow?
  • キクチ(くん)といえば(いく)なんだろう
    Speaking of Kikuchi-kun, I wonder how old he is.




    A: 'Recently anime is getting popular internationally.'
    B: 'Speaking of anime, a new season of 'Dragoon ball' has aired, right?'


    A: 'I have heard that you can see auroras and wild animals in Canada.'
    B: 'Speaking of the beauty of auroras, it cannot be described with words.' (if you were to speak of...)


    A: 'I like to read about American celebrities.'
    B: 'Speaking of American celebrities, do you know Tom Cruise?'

    A: 「ドイツの(くるま)世界(せかい)(てき)有名(ゆうめい)ですね。」
    B: 「 (くるま)といえば日本(にほん)(なか)では、トヨタが有名(ゆうめい)です。」

    A: 'German cars are known all over the world.'
    B: 'Speaking of cars, in Japan, Toyota is famous.'

    A: 「夏休(なつやす)み、(うみ)()きたいわ。」
    B: 「(なつ)といえばかき(ごおり)だよね。」

    A: 'I want to go to the beach during summer vacation.'
    B: 'Speaking of summer, shaved ice!'

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といえば – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (4 in total)

  • mrnoone



    I have seen it used like this few times, but そういえば is far more common and natural.

    そういえば トム・クルツは知っているの?


  • MegaZeroX


    According to Edawakaru, there is a nuance to というと and といえば in that といえば can’t be used for questions about the topic while というと can. So maybe that should be added to the reading, or a Japanese Stack Exchange question answering the same thing.

    Also, is there a known difference between といったら and the others?

  • Daru


    It’s because you’re no longer guessing or setting up a conditional/hypothetical. It’s very similar to the rules used to ‘respect’ これ・それ・あれ.

    The nuance between といったら・というと・といえば inherit their respective conditional’s nuance.

    This very same reason is why you can’t use といえば in conversation as the resource you pointed out states, as と forebodes a 100% likely event in terms of conditional. といえば・といたら give t a softer tone as they’re less ‘definitive’ conditionals, といえば being softer.

    Hope this helps! I’ve added your resource to the Grammar Point!

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