2

だから僕は、たまに彼を昔の僕と重ねていた。

重ねて:
1. 同じ行為・事態をもう一度繰り返すさま。再び。文章語で、多く手紙や公式の発言に用いる。 「 -要望する」
2. この次。今後。 「 -は泥鰌(どじよう)にてもあれ、鮠(はえ)にても候へ必ず持つて伺候致さうずる/狂言・鱸庖丁」
(Source)

The context is the narrator finds his classmate quite similar to his former self. So point 1 fits the above sentence.

Could I translate it as follows:

That's why I sometimes saw my former self again in him.

Thank you for the guidance.

  • 1
    Why look up the adverb 重ねて, not the verb 重ね ? – Chocolate Oct 4 '19 at 2:26
6

だから僕は、たまに彼を昔の僕と重ねていた。

重ねて in 重ねていた is not an adverb but the te-form of the verb 重ねる.

Here (~を‥と/に)重ねる means "to identify ~~ with‥" "to see ~~ in‥" (≂重ね合わせる), hence the translation:

That's why I sometimes saw my former self in him.

  • Thank you for the guidance. I'm totally a beginner, even though I have read the te-form, but I still got confused. I'm grateful for your kind explanation. – Amanda Zhang Oct 4 '19 at 2:41
3

This 重ねて is a simple te-form of the verb 重ねる, followed by いた that makes the past-progressive form (expresses a past habitual action in this case). Or you can say this is the past-teiru-form of 重ねる. Here, 重ねる means "to identify with someone" or "to project someone into ~".

だから僕は、たまに彼を昔の僕と重ねていた。
That's why I sometimes projected him into my past self.

As you have cited, 重ねて also has a lexicalized usage ("once again"), but you can forget it for now.

  • あっ また遅かったぁ~.... – Chocolate Oct 4 '19 at 2:39
  • Thank you, I can understand a bit more now. I'm grateful to join this forum, I learned a little by a little. – Amanda Zhang Oct 4 '19 at 2:39

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