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「クジョーの奴は、ばらばらに吹っ飛んだんだったか

「ええ」

自走地雷──爆薬の詰まった胴体に棒状の手足と顔のない頭部のついた、遠目には人に見えなくもない出来の悪い対人兵器を負傷兵と見誤って組みつかれた。夜戦の、他部隊の救援任務中だった。

「そりゃあよかった。逝けたのか、あいつは」

「おそらくは」

From 86─エイティシックス─ 安里アサト

The speaker was recalling that his comrade クジョー was killed by some kind of landmine.

My grammar book says the 〜のだった is used when you recall some past event emotionally. And with 〜たのだった, there is an extra nuance that you want to confirm the past single event when you recall it.

I think this explanation applies to the bold example and the か at the end of sentence emphasize the confirmation tone.

Am I on the right track?

1 Answer 1

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Yes you're on the right track.

  • 吹っ飛んだ。
    → neutrally describes a past event
  • 吹っ飛んだんだ
    → with explanatory-no
  • 吹っ飛んだんだった
    → with modal-ta, adds a nuance of "I (emotionally) recall" or "I just recalled/noticed"
  • 吹っ飛んだんだった
    → with the question marker to confirm, "..., huh?"

So the speaker just recalled the past fact (ばらばらに吹っ飛んだ), but added "huh" since he was not completely sure.

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