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I have the following sentence from chapter 140 of the manga, 『五等分の花嫁』.

今の父と再婚するまでの私たちは極貧生活でした。

Context: One of the girls (of 5 siblings) is speaking with her male friend and she is discussing how that before their family became rich, they used to be quite poor.

Here is my attempted breakdown. I believe the subject of the clause marked as the topic to be the girl's mother (I could very well be wrong here, causing my whole interpretation to go awry).

今の父と再婚するまで - Until her second marriage with the current father.

- possessive?

私たちは極貧生活でした。 - 私たち is the subject and as for them, they were poor.

I've seen plenty of "noun + の + noun" situations and plenty of situations where a clause precedes の allowing の to treat the clause as a noun.

Example: 涼しい飲み物の一番の選択 - The best choice of cool drinks

Example: 漫画を読むのが楽しい。 - The thing of reading making is fun.

I've also seen where you can combine particles like で and の to make noun phrases. The pattern here is "noun + での + noun".

図書館での勉強 - studying in the library.

I'm starting to think that the usage is similar to the first. One issue is that I'm unsure what まで is. Jisho says it's a particle, although I only considered true particles to be "が、を、で、へ、に、も、は". Considering it to be a noun, the structure would be, "relative clause packed onto noun (まで) + の + noun".

The English translation sounds goofy but it would be something like this:

  • As for us (私たち) of class "until our mother remarried with our current father," we were poor.

Would this be correct? I think the root cause of my misunderstanding is まで and seeing it as a noun. までの seems a bit weird to my western eyes.

I appreciate all help that comes my way.

  • What speaks against まで as a normal particle, though? You already know the grammar of your example 図書館での勉強. までの is the same concept, is it not? – Kaskade Sep 20 at 20:42
  • @Kaskade my example was noun + での (combined particles) + noun. This is 今の父と再婚する (relative clause) + までの + noun (if we aren't considering まで to be a noun). Besides the nominalizing の, I thought the one rule was that what precedes a particle needs to be a noun. – UCProgrammer Sep 20 at 20:50
  • That's actually a misconception. There's まで - like in your examples - that can follow verbs, but there's also も, for example, which can follow the て-form of verbs (行っても -> "even if I go"). Even に can come directly after the dictionary-form of a verb. – Kaskade Sep 20 at 20:54
  • the title is asking about の but the body somewhat sidetracks into まで. Which の are you having trouble with? both? – Igor Skochinsky Sep 20 at 21:07
  • My bad. the までの. I think it's the possessive の but I'm not so sure – UCProgrammer Sep 20 at 21:08
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Seems to me it's just the adjectival の.

(今の父と再婚するまで)の(私たち)

"Us" (私たち) is modified with "until [the time when] my mom married our current dad"

You were correct when you compared it to a noun-phrase like "図書館での勉強 - studying in the library". I'm far from an expert but you can see the adjectival の used together with other particles all the time.

Other examples of までの taken from https://eow.alc.co.jp/search?q=%E3%81%BE%E3%81%A7%E3%81%AE:

~までの地図 - A map to ~

~までの日を数える - Count down the days until ~

~までのタクシー代 - Taxi fare to ~

and so on.

  • That's what I thought as well, even though I mistakenly called it possessive instead of adjectival. I've come to know that aside from particles, there are three types of words in Japanese: verbs, i adjectives and nouns. So seeing まで as 迄 (a word with no kana so it must be a noun), it seemed most likely that this was a noun の noun situation working in a modifying sense. Thank you for confirming – UCProgrammer Sep 21 at 1:29

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