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では、なぜ北が上でなければならないのだろうか。 (From line 7: https://www.docdroid.net/847v2dg/img-20170413-0001-new.pdf.html) で should be a particle here right? If so, why is なければならない not attached to any verb? I don't know what this means.

I would say that the sentence means the following: "Well, why must the north be attached on top/in the upper section?" But I can't say why なければならない floats around freely like this.

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Here is the passage:

地図は普通、北を上にして[描]{か}かれる。では、なぜ北が上でなければならないのだろうか。これは地図に経緯度が使われるようになってからの習慣であって、古い地図には南が上のものも多い。

In fact, there is a verb. This verb is である. And the negative of である is でない. Must be can then be written でなければならない.

Usually on a map, north is at the top. But, how come that north has to be at the top? In fact, it has been customary since the use of latitude and longitude and it is not unusual to see south at the top on old maps.

  • Okay, but is this a special form なければならない then? Because I only learnt なければならない as a set phrase, I don't know what it consists of. It looks like a huge suffix to me, so to say :D So if でない is contained in there, it looks to me like the whole ない has been evaporated...^^ :D – Narktor Apr 14 '17 at 10:51
  • Sure you can see it as a long suffix but that is a bit unsatisfying because you miss the thing of how things work. ければ here is a conditional なければ is the conditional of ない and ならない is the negative of なる. So なければならない means something like if not so that won't be good (hence the idea of obligation). なぜ北が上でなければならないのだろうか means literally: Why would that not be good if north is not at the top? – 永劫回帰 Apr 14 '17 at 11:08
  • Ah thanks! :) I guess instead of でなければならない there could also be なければならない? because である is the more formal form of ある, according to my textbook. Furthermore, was the particle indicating local information (に/で) for 上 left out by the writer or wasn't it necessary to begin with? And one more thing just out of curiosity: ない-form of verb + なければならない: what does this do to the preceding verb then? Both ある and なる are verbs I would associate with kopula constructions. So usually I'd expect them to interact with a noun, that's at least the prototypical situation for kopula I encounter inmy lang – Narktor Apr 14 '17 at 11:25

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