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Here is a panel from chapter one of 2001 Ya Monogatari

I have trouble understanding the second text box

はるかな太古からのイメージ... それまでの彼には想像すら不可能だった生き物たちの...

What イメージ means? The last の modifies which part? Is it an inverted sentence?

それまでの彼には想像すら不可能だった生き物たちのはるかな太古からのイメージ

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  • What is “he” seeing here? Or what does the それ at the beginning refer to?
    – aguijonazo
    Nov 15, 2022 at 7:34

2 Answers 2

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There is no inversion. の in 生き物たちの is a noun-linking particle meaning 's, but it connects to 無重力の影響 in the next frame. This イメージ is simply "image" or "vision". Note that 影響 is a paraphrase of イメージ. So there is a long subject "(イメージ, which is 生き物たちの無重力の影響,)が..."

The basic structure of this sentence is:

イメージ――影響が、彼の頭脳に何か不思議な作用を生じさせたのだろうか?
Did the vision, or influence, have some mysterious effect on his brain?

And the full translation:

はるかな太古からのイメージ――それまでの彼には想像すらできなかった生き物たちの無重力の影響が、彼の頭脳に何か不思議な作用を生じさせたのだろうか?

Did the vision from the ancient times—the weightless influence of creatures he could not even imagine before—have some mysterious effect on his brain?

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I don't think this is intended to be an inverted sentence

The after 生き物たち either modifies something unsaid that is supposed to be "obvious" or acts as an explanatory / emphasis on there being 生き物たち (living creatures) that were impossible to imagine by the character. I would assume it's leaning more towards the explanatory / emphasis side of things here


Misunderstood question originally, but leaving in the original explanation as a part of the answer:

I don't think this is intended to be an inverted sentence

This is a combination of the から and particles. The から means from here, where as the is being used in the nominalize as an adjective sense. is needed to grammatically to connect イメージ (image) to はるかな太古 (ancient times long ago) and portrays it is a image from (of) ancient times. This is somewhat hard to understand in the context in English depending on the case, since the here does not really have an English word equivalent. So this part is just:

はるかな太古からのイメージ...

A image from (of) ancient times long ago...

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  • i mean the one after 生き物たち
    – David Lane
    Nov 14, 2022 at 20:50
  • @DavidLane Misunderstood the original question. Updated answer Nov 14, 2022 at 21:41

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