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I'm trying to make sense of the words said by a character in a manga who talks in an archaic manner. I tried into account the context, the images, all to help me figure out what he is saying.

俺を見ろ子供!世界のすべて城砦に抱く英雄たる男の背を!

The character says all this like a declaration and looking at how it's structured, they remind me of lyrics a bit, which makes it tricky as I know how vague they can be and sometimes have verbs or even particles omitted. The fact that I have seen the ~を particle at the end gave me the impression of song lyrics, that's where I see it a lot in that way.

I attempted to translate it even partially after I broke down all the words:
"Watch me/Look at me children!" <-This was easy, then I looked towards the end of the sentence for 英雄たる男の背を which I can assume that the 'back of the hero' is connected to the first part, the subject being 俺 and that's why I think を is there at the end to mark it.

For the part here 城砦に抱く I had an image in my mind, thinking that this can be taken figuratively, to sound more poetic and I translated as "embracing like a fortress" as a poetic way to say "to protect".
I only thought of this possibility due to another example

この本を褒美あげる (I will give you this book as a reward)

In the above sentence, what role does the に particle have there? Because I could use として and it would have the same meaning and I don't think the particle has that use, but that it is how I thought of it to get to my translation.
If it was 城砦として抱く (to embrace like/in the role of/ in the manner of a fortress).

I really don't know if whatever I said makes any sense, if I explained enough...I would appreciate any opinion and interpretation if possible!
Thank you in advance!

  • I'm not putting this as an answer, but you're on the right track with "the back of the hero." It does sound like "Look at me! At the back of the hero that..." blah blah. The sentence has a gloating feel to it, at least that's how I read it. – psosuna Jul 16 at 5:37
  • @psosuna indeed, it has that feel. so at least I connected those two alright. The rest of my problem is with 世界のすべて城砦に抱く which I feel to translate it as (This hero before you) I will embrace all the world like a fortress. I'm interpreting the whole thing that the hero wants to protect the whole world, comparing himself to a fortress, the defense of everyone, that's why he will hold the world in his embrace, to protect it. Again, I might be exaggerating, but this is the visual I got. – Alice B. Rabbit Jul 16 at 5:46
  • I'm not putting mine as an answer either, but I saw 背 in a more figurative sense of 'stature', as is seen in 背比べ (An image link would help, as it's a visual medium). I read it as 'Look at the stature/greatness of the man who is a hero who would claim all the world's strongholds.', but I might be off base. – BJCUAI Jul 16 at 5:49
  • @BJCUAI oh actually for that I'm going with the idea of the expression 背中で語る because I know from many anime and manga that the image of men being strong is described by their back, such as when for example a young boy has grown big, his back is wide and they say to him "you are an adult now". And many protagonists/heroes in anime look all cool when they stand facing with the back, behind them being the people which are meant to be protected. – Alice B. Rabbit Jul 16 at 5:59
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    I'd like to confirm: (1) isn't it すべて? (2) is the speaker related in any way to a real fortress? A picture of the whole scene would be helpful if any... – broccoli forest Jul 16 at 9:47
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The verb that corresponds to 背を is 見ろ. He rephrased 俺 with a more concrete and dramatic phrase, 世界のすべて城砦に抱く英雄たる男の背. Since this is not in a casual situation, I feel を is missing before 城砦, but it may be possible if this is recited in a verse-like way.

So the "plain" version of this sentence is:

世界のすべて城砦に抱く英雄たる男の背を見ろ!
Behold the back of the man (=俺), the hero who embraces the entire world in a fortress!

に in 城砦に抱く should be a kind of a destination marker (i.e., the world goes into a fortress). For example, you can say 赤ん坊を腕に抱く.

  • Yes, it's like the man is speaking in verse! And 城砦に, after reading the sentence a couple of times, it didn't quite fit to treat it as a place where an action takes place, I started to think it was a metaphor and it got me thinking of the other sentence that I knew, which I have mentioned included: 本を褒美にあげる. "To give a book as a reward", is there a special use of theに particle that maybe I do not know? Another example: 自分へのご褒美にビデオゲームを買った。Following this there was also the version withとして instead of に, the meaning is the same 'as a' (treat/prize etc). – Alice B. Rabbit Jul 16 at 11:09
  • @AliceB.Rabbit Sorry, I think I was overthinking regarding this に...Please see the edit. – naruto Jul 16 at 12:34
  • Thank you, I think now I'm getting a better understanding of this sentence! It was really quite tricky! – Alice B. Rabbit Jul 16 at 19:35

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