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自分の顔をぐりぐりむにゅむにゅ、これでもかというぐらい触りじっくり見てまた触ってみよう。

This sentence contains the word むにゅむにゅ, its a word that doesn't have an entry on jisho.org and also doesn't seem to appear on any of the extensive lists of Japanese onomatopoeia words. I eventually managed to find a page describing it as "gummy", but I'm not exactly sure how that relates to this sentence and ぐりぐり as the two words seemed opposed. One being hard and other soft. Could anyone help me out with how you might translate this clause? And what exactly むにゅむにゅ means?

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I can see how "gummy" came up for you, since I found "flexible" and "tender" as other definitions (http://okwave.jp/qa/q2639864.html).

ぐりぐりむにゅむにゅ don't seem opposed if you read it as he was massaging his hands over his face, imagining the skin stretching around as he did so.

See item 2 for ぐりぐり.

  • Thank you! So does that mean that in the clause "自分の顔をぐりぐりむにゅむにゅ" the onomatopoeic words act as a verb? I was confused as well because when translated they seem to be adjectives and the を object marker is applying "自分の顔"? – user2457072 Oct 3 '16 at 10:43
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    I think the clear onomatopoeia, ぐりぐり, is functioning as an adverb and むにゅむにゅ is in the class of mimetic words, which can function as verbs. Taken together, yes, I would agree they are acting as a verb. – Louis Oct 4 '16 at 4:16
  • Great I didn't know mimetic words COULD function as verbs. Very enlightening. Thank you for replying :) – user2457072 Oct 4 '16 at 11:49

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