How would you interpret this sentence?
How would you interpret this sentence: Now the fighting was in the next mountains beyond and was not a mile away?
Does it mean the fighting was in the second range of mountains which is beyond the town? I guess the mountains which the house in the village looked across is the first range of mountains, and the town is located between the first and the second range of mountains, right?
As for the phrase ‘not a mile away’, does it mean not as near as a mile away, or less than a mile away?
Thanks. It’s from A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway.the context:
The next year there were many victories. The mountain that was beyond the valley and the hillside where the chestnut forest grew was captured and there were victories beyond the plain on the plateau to the south and we crossed the river in August and lived in a house in Gorizia that had a fountain and many thick shady trees in a walled garden and a wistaria vine purple on the side of the house. Now the fighting was in the next mountains beyond and was not a mile away. The town was very nice and our house was very fine. The river ran behind us and the town had been captured very handsomely but the mountains beyond it could not be taken and I was very glad the Austrians seemed to want to come back to the town some time, if the war should end, because they did not bombard it to destroy it but only a little in a military way.the previous context:
In the late summer of that year we lived in a house in a village that looked across the river and the plain to the mountains.
The plain was rich with crops; there were many orchards of fruit trees and beyond the plain the mountains were brown and bare. There was fighting in the mountains and at night we could see the flashes from the artillery. In the dark it was like summer lightning, but the nights were cool and there was not the feeling of a storm coming.