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Human beings like a prospect from which they can survey a landscape, and at the same time they enjoy a sense of refuge. A cave on the side of a mountain, a child’s tree house, and the king’s castle are situations with appeal. Protection afforded by an overhang of some sort (trees, cliff face, roof) is preferred, along with a sense of being “safe” from observation or attack from behind. The most attractive landscapes tend to combine some of these elements, in pictures as much as in reality. In fact, most landscape representation in the history of painting places the implied viewer at some desirable vantage point — a cliff edge, perhaps, typically looking down into a valley.

Q. I was wondering what would be looking down into a valley. Would the implied subject of "looking down ~" be the "implied viewer" or the "vantage point", which rephrased as a cliff edge in this sentence?

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    The cliff edge is "looking down into the valley". – Hot Licks Nov 17 '19 at 1:26
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    I read that sentence to mean the implied viewer is looking down into the valley (from the cliff's edge), but it's possible that it's the cliff's edge looking down into the valley – Arm the good guys in America Nov 17 '19 at 1:46
  • I think you should include the whole sentence with your question. The more context, the better. – KannE Nov 17 '19 at 8:32
  • @KannE I added the entire paragraph. – Kinam99 Nov 17 '19 at 22:55
  • it's still ambiguous and poorly written – Arm the good guys in America Nov 18 '19 at 3:00
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According to www.merrian-webster.com/dictionary/look we see within the section intransitive verb, (definition 3) "look" can be something that an inanimate object can do. With that I say that the cliff is looking down...

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