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I am still reading the 十二国記 novel 月の影 影の海. At the end of the first part, after a rather harrowing day, Yoko is riding a leopard-like magical creature, flying through the night sky, when they are attacked by a multitude of enemy creatures. Eventually trapped, she is thrown off the leopard's back, falling from the sky. She opens her eyes, sees a boar-like creature coming at her, and feels a flesh-tearing impact in her right hand. She hears a creature's scream and her own yell. Then follows this sentence:

それを最後{さいご}に五感{ごかん}までもが闇{やみ}の中【なか】に墜落{ついらく}していった。

I understand the general gist of the sentence - at this point her five senses give in - figuratively joining her body in falling into the darkness.

The trouble I'm having is with the までもが there. This is not the first time I run into a もが - I've seen 誰もが already, but it, too, confuses me.

How does が following も work? What is the meaning of this particular case (までもが), is there any relation between this construct and 誰もが, and are there additional examples of such も+が constructs?

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    By the way, isn't the book titled 十二国記, instead of 中二国記? – broccoli forest Dec 7 '14 at 4:43
  • Yes, fixed the typo. – RealSkeptic Dec 7 '14 at 8:45
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There is a small set of quasi-noun idioms made of question words + , which roughly means "every-X". Since they are nouns, they can theoretically put any kind of postpositions after them. But actually they are only used with , less often or , and sometimes (except for いつも, which is a full-fledged noun).

  • Who: 誰{だれ}も, 誰{だれ}もかも, 誰{だれ}も彼{かれ}も "everybody"
  • What: 何{なに}もかも "everything"
  • When: いつも "every time, the usual" (full-fledged noun)
  • Which: どれも, いずれも, どちらも, どの noun も, いずれの noun も "any one, any of ..."

The quasi-nouns may have different accents to ordinary combinations:

だれも{HLL}が vs. だれも{LHH}いない, どれも{HLL}が vs. どれも{LHH}いらない

The questioned までも is considered to be a derivation of them, which could be translated into "everything down to X" or "eventually X (with all other things)". Similar expressions are さえも and すらも, both with boundary-delimiting particles.

  • I wonder how it could be considered a derivation, as no question word is involved. Is there an implied question word that I'm missing? – RealSkeptic Dec 7 '14 at 9:26
  • My original intention was that, it's contraction of what would be like "までの何もかも", but on second thought, I'm unclear now. The meaning is just what I've given. – broccoli forest Dec 7 '14 at 9:43

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