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Can someone help me with the logic of the following sentence:

kaien made ato, sanpun shikanai.

There is only 3 minutes left until the opening/curtain raising.

I don't understand how "ato" translates into "left". Normally ato means after and now it means left. Maybe I don't get the logic. Or maybe ato has two different meanings in different contexts. Can someone help me out?

For learning: Japanese
Base language: English
Category: Language



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    Hi Fatih,

    According to the Kodansha's Concise Romanized Japanese-English Dictionary, "ato" (後 in kanji)has four meanings and yours is No.4 below.

    1) the area behind

    2) time after, time later

    3) the rest, remainder

    4) another, more (preceding a word that specifies a quantity)

    Another example of No.4 case:

    Ato gofun matte kudasai.
    Please wait five more minutes.

    Just for your information, there are other "ato"s in different kanji, and those are not included in the four meanings above.
    For example, ato(跡) means, mark, trace, track, trail.

    I hope it helps!

    ato does not mean "left." Kaien made 3pun shikanai means same thing.
    ato is similar to "just" or "only" in English. But this word is often used with the concept of time, so it can be translate to left, I guess.

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