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「うーん、君が納得する話が出来るかどうか。そうだね、例えば……」

「僕は両親の顔も知らない。戦争で敵兵になぶりものにされて殺されたんだ」

「それで、叔父に引き取られたんだけどさ。...

In this hypothetical, the parents are killed in war but the bolded section is unintuitive to read.

嬲る can't take 敵兵に directly as a transitive verb, but 敵兵に is the only thing that can do the ものにされて殺された to his parents.

would appreciate clarification, than you

  • It's the noun なぶりもの you're dealing with, not the verb なぶる. So it's 敵兵に ... 殺されたんだ that's the basic sentence, right? – Frithany Oct 18 '18 at 20:03
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First, note the following:

  • The highlighted sentence is a passive sentence. In passive sentences, the agent is often marked by に.

  • "なぶりもの" as a whole is a noun-equivalent, so the verb of the highlighted sentence is not 嬲る. Instead, you could say that "なぶりものにする" is like a verb on its own.

Breaking down the sentence piece-by-piece:

戦争で

the "location" of the action

敵兵に

the agent of the action in the passive sentence

なぶりものにされて 殺されたんだ

the two verbs of the sentence, combined with て to indicate that the two events happened sequentially.

The verbs are conjugated in the passive voice. The 敵兵 is the agent who is doing the action, and we understand from context that it is the speaker's 両親 who received the actions of the agent.

  • can なぶり directly describe もの? My fixation was not really on the passive but more how なぶり fit in the sentence. Usually when there just a random verb stem in the middle of sentence, it's the sentence break version. – charu Oct 18 '18 at 20:27
  • なぶりもの is a word on its own in the dictionary, and I don't think "ものにする" by itself would make sense in this sentence... so I'm fairly certain that this is the correct interpretation. – Nicolas Louis Guillemot Oct 18 '18 at 20:34
  • ah indeed it is a word on it's own – charu Oct 18 '18 at 20:36
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    @charu This may help: japanese.stackexchange.com/q/32299/5010 – naruto Oct 19 '18 at 0:03

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