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Mourlevat’s narrative reveals a strong belief in the interconnectedness between people and between history and the present. Witness to almost unbelievable and heart-wrenching coincidences, the reader cannot help but succumb to the idea of fate; as young characters demonstrate the passion and pain of fighting for what they believe to be right, losing and gaining friends along the way, solidarity among the oppressed emerges as a prominent theme of the novel.

Source: https://www.forewordreviews.com/reviews/winters-end/

I would like to ask what kind of the grammatical structure the phrase "witness to" is. I presume that it is related to "the reader" who is the witness of coincidencies.

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    It could be rephrased as Witnessing {x}, the reader ... or Being witness to {x}, the reader ... – Tᴚoɯɐuo Apr 22 '18 at 15:24
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Structurally, what you have there would be similar to the following sentence:

Unimpeded, she continued her walk to the house.

I don't remember the formal name for this type of grammar (I guess, it's some kind of adverbial), but what the sentence really says is this:

She continued her walk to the house in an unimpeded manner.

In other words, nothing was preventing her from continuing walking to the house. To make sure that we're dealing with an adverbial, we can ask the following question: How did she continue her walk to the house? The answer would be Unimpeded. So, we're using an adjective to describe the manner in which an action was done.

The exact same thing applies to your example. Witness is an adjective. The entire phrase witness to blah blah blah describes how the reader cannot help but succumb to the idea of fate. They cannot help but succumb to the idea of fate witness to almost unbelievable and heart-wrenching coincidences. I know it sounds like a weired phrasing, but it's actually perfectly legitimate English. Let's paraphrase that sentence fragment if you still have trouble understanding it:

Seeing almost unbelievable and heart-wrenching coincidences, the reader cannot help but succumb to the idea of fate.

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