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あの〈花〉の世界は……朝露にぬれて芽をのばしていくような,

Cala

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I'm reading a fantasy book. The full sentence is:

あの〈花〉の世界は……朝露にぬれて芽をのばしていくような、みずみずしい生命のにおいがしていたけれど、どこかで夜明け前の静けさのような死のにおいもただよっていた。
I'm fine with everything after the first comma:
there was a smell of fresh life, but a smell of death like the silence right before dawn was also hanging in the air.

Before that though:
The Flower's world... Drenched in morning dew (I don't know how this connects to the bud, if it was describing it wouldn't it be ぬれた not ぬれて) As if it were trying to stretch/extend/make grow (since we're talking about a bud?)

So that first bit is confusing me. Help please.
 

Toritoribe

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朝露にぬれて芽をのばしていくような modifies 生命, thus, 朝露にぬれて is the continuous usage of the -te form. Unlike 朝露にぬれた, it doesn't modify 芽. 生命が朝露にぬれて芽をのばしていく makes sense?
のばしていく doesn't have the meaning "to try".
ような shows it's an example there, not "as if".
 

Cala

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So something like:

The Flower's world... smelled of fresh life drenched in the morning dew as if it were making the bud grow, but a smell of death...

It's still 生命 that's making the bud grow right? It's both drenched in morning dew and making the bud grow...
 

Toritoribe

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のばしていく is not causative, either. It's spontaneous. Indeed のばす is transitive, but (植物が)芽を伸ばす is used as the same meaning as 芽が伸びる, similar to 花を咲かす vs. 花が咲く, 芽を出す vs. 芽が出る, 実を付ける vs. 実が付く or 根を張る vs. 根が張る.
 
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The bud is growing by itself then. I understand. Is that bit about the growing bud a further explanation for the kind of smell that's being described?

There was a smell of fresh life drenched in the morning dew, like that of a growing bud, but...
 

Toritoribe

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Yes, but ような is also applied to 朝露にぬれて; like being drenched in the morning dew and,,, .
 
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Is the ような applied to both 朝露にぬれて and 芽をのばしていく?

There was a smell of fresh life, like being drenched in the morning dew and like a bud growing, but...

Like this I'm interpreting that sentence like:

強くてきれいな人

Is that correct?
 

Toritoribe

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Those are not two independent examples of simile. The function of the -te form is just to connect clauses, and the meaning is determined by the relation between the clauses. In your sentence, the -te form is more likely for cause/reason; "and then/therefore". 朝露にぬれたような、芽をのばしていくような is used for your translation.
 
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If you're saying the -te form is implying cause then:

There was a smell of fresh life like a bud growing as/because it is drenched in the morning dew?
 

Toritoribe

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It doesn't show the meaning of "cause" so strongly, so I chose "and then".
"It" is not "a bud" but "life" in your translation, as I pointed out previously. This is exactly why the transitive 芽をのばしていく is used there, not 芽がのびていく.

種が地面に落ち、芽を出した。
種が地面に落ち、芽が出た。

The meanings are the same between the two sentences above, but the former one more strongly suggests that the seed is "alive" and has a nuance as if it sprouts by its own will since the subject is the same between the two clauses.
 
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There was a smell of fresh life as if it were being drenched in morning dew and then a bud were sprouting...

So here the life is being drenched and it is my intention that both the drenching and the sprouting are included in the 'as if' (ような), which is the reason for the second were. Is this any closer?
 
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