674 - とおり(に)

JLPT N3: とおり(に)

とおり(に)is used in sentences to say "the same way as" or "just as."

For example, you could say:


わたしの言うとおりにしていれば大丈夫ですよ。
わたし の いう とおりに していれば だいじょうぶ です よ。
If you do it exactly how I say, it’ll be fine. // You’ll be fine if you just do it exactly as I say.
Literally: “I + の + say + とおりに + do (and) + if you are + OK + です + よ.”


In isolation, 通り (とおり) means... well, a lot of things. I like to remember it as meaning "way" (or "road," but I'll get to that later).

It is worth noting the many meanings of the verb 通る (とおる), also. One dictionary says:

通る(とおる
(1) to go by; to go past; to go along; to travel along; to pass through; to use (a road); to take (a route); to go via; to go by way of
(2) (of public transport) to run (between); to operate (between); to connect
(3) to go indoors; to go into a room; to be admitted; to be shown in; to be ushered in; to come in
(4) to penetrate; to pierce; to skewer; to go through; to come through
(5) to permeate; to soak into; to spread throughout
(6) to carry (e.g. of a voice); to reach far
(7) to be passed on (e.g. of a customer's order to the kitchen); to be relayed; to be conveyed
(8) to pass (a test, a bill in the House, etc.); to be approved; to be accepted
(9) to go by (a name); to be known as; to be accepted as; to have a reputation for
(10) to be coherent; to be logical; to be reasonable; to be comprehensible; to be understandable; to make sense
(11) to get across (e.g. of one's point); to be understood
(12) to be straight (e.g. wood grain)
(13) to be well-informed; to be wise
(14) (after the -masu stem of a verb) to do ... completely; to do ... thoroughly

Man, dictionaries are scary. Maybe we can just remember it as "to follow a certain path."

Anyway, yeah, we saw:

わたしの言うとおりに
わたし の いう とおりに
exactly how I say // just like I say
Literally: “I + の + say + とおりに”


👷 Construction 👷

The word coming directly before 通り can be a verb in plain form or a NOUN followed by .

Specifically, we'll see:

V るとおり(に)
V たとおり(に)
NOUNとおり(に)


Here are two more examples:


後藤先生の奥さんは、想像していた通りの優しい人でした。
ごとう せんせい の おくさん は、 そうぞう していた とおり の やさしい ひと でした。
Just like I imagined, Goto-sensei’s wife was a really nice person.
Literally: “Goto-sensei + の + wife + は, + imagination + was doing + とおり + の + kind / gentle + person + でした.”


レシピ通りに作ったのに、丸焦げになった。
レシピ の とおりに つくった のに、 まるこげ に なった。
I made it just like the recipe said to, but it got completely burnt.
Literally: “recipe + の + とおりに + made + although (=のに), + completely burning + に + became.”


Making sense?

Well, hold on a second.

とおり can also come directly after a NOUN, without including at all.

When this happens, the pronunciation changes from おり to おり


私の予想通り、犯人は被害者の恋人だった。
わたし の よそう どおり、 はんにん は ひがいしゃ の こいびと だった。
Just as I suspected, the criminal was the victim’s boyfriend [girlfriend].
Literally: “I + の + expectation / conjecture + どおり, + criminal + は + victim + の + lover + だった.”


通り can also mean "Street," "Avenue," etc. In such cases, it will be attaching to the end of the street's name. In other words, it will be directly attaching to a NOUN, which means that the pronunciation is どおり and not とおり.

In a recent lesson, for example, we were talking about 明治通り (めいじどおり), which we could translate as "Meiji Street" or "Meiji Avenue," if you like. Although even in English, I tend to call it "Meiji-dori."

Or my workplace used to be on 靖国通り (やすくにどおり), "Yasukuni Street" in Shinjuku.

One of my favorite shrines, 花園神社 (はなぞのじんじゃ // Hanazono Shrine) is tucked away behind some buildings just off that street.


( ↑ Path to Hanazono Shrine)

One summer night some friends and I were sitting on the steps of Hanazono Shrine late at night, chatting and having some beers. An Canadian girl who was traveling in Japan asked to take our picture. I wish I'd asked her for it because I suspect a picture of six random people chilling on the steps of a shrine in the center of Tokyo late at night would have been pretty cool.


( ↑ We were sitting on those steps.)


( ↑ Hanazono Shrine's also not a bad spot for 5 minutes of cherry blossom viewing.)

Anyway, I'm digressing. The lesson's over! You're done. ^^

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