tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Tue Dec 21 20:25:27 1993

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Re: KBTP: Mark

batlh choja', trI'Qal quv:

=    Well, I finally got a chance to read through the translation of Mark that 
=was sent to the list, and I have to say (with no disrespect for the translator 
=intended; these are just my thoughts) that I was disappointed.

No offence taken, but hey, off I go anyway ;) (I do find it intriguing that
I manage to flood Klingon-list for two months, but people still don't
remember my name, but that's another kettle of qagh...)

=    First of all, there were several words I had neither seen before, nor 
=could I find in my dictionary (to which I have taken the pains of adding the 
=new words which have been posted here), and which were not acceptible 
=compounds, to my knowledge.  Among these were QumyaSwI', pelu' and vamwI'pu'.  
=If these are just words that I somehow failed to enter in my KD, someone 
=please tell me so, and re-send the list which included them?

Tsk tsk, tri'Qal. QumyaSwI', built on the model of QumpInwI': my communications
officer -> my angel. pelu', granted, is a typo for pe'lu', and vamwI'pu' for
vumwI'pu'. The reason why I post these is for people to help me track these
down and fix 'em. (Here's hoping noone notices the Qub in Sonnet XCVI was
meant to be Qup). Oh well. Attacking QumyaS, though, when QumpIn already
exists... well, it seems to me iffy. We can compound words in Klingon, after
all, and if any translating is to be done, we'll have to. At least, I don't
break the noun-noun compounding rule unless there's a clear precedent like
with QumpIn (and even that I'd probably hesistate to use these days.)

=    Second, I found that the author's use of commas was a bit proliferous.  It 
=was not until half-way through the translation that I realized that he was 
=using them to seperate complex (ie, nouns with a relative clause with an 
=object attached) items in noun-noun "ands" from the other items being "and"ed 
=(if that makes any sense).  This caused me considerably more confusion than it 
=was worth, especially since his use of -'e' and the grammatical structure in 
=almost all (or perhaps even all) of those cases made the constructions very 
=clear as to what was part of the complex construction, and what was another 
=item listed in the "and".

Now, this usage of commas is not inherently confusing, it's just different
from English. I would have thought that, if anything, it would clear up any
ambiguity, and I'm not anywhere near as sure that all such instances were
unambiguous. I mean,

ghaH jaH *yuDay'a* Sep ngan Hoch, *yeruSalem* ngan Hoch je

is much clearer than

ghaH jaH *yuDay'a* Sep ngan Hoch *yeruSalem* ngan Hoch je

Sure, you can guess what the latter means, but the former is... why,
clearer! Let alone a phrase like

*qamela'* pob, porghbotlh Dechbogh DIr qogh'e' je tuQ *yo'aneS*
(Camel hair, body-middle surrounding skin belt also wears John)
(John wore camel's hair and a leather belt around his waist)

I don't know about you, but *I*'d just throw my hands up in the air when
confronted with something more like

*qamela'* pob porghbotlh Dechbogh DIr qogh'e' je tuQ *yo'aneS*

--- I'd hardly know how to split the string of nouns up! John wears a leather
belt surrounding the waist of camel hair?

The other places I use commas extensively is to separate
embedded clauses from the main, and there , I think, they're indispensible,
especially when it's hard to tell which part of a string of nouns between
the two verbs belongs to which verb. Thus:

bIQ mejDI', chal pe'lu' 'ej ghaH ghIr *pIjIn* puvwI' rurbogh qa' quv'e'
'e' legh

with no commas, it's just too easy to have a hard time reading it: is
the sky leaving the water?

=    Finally, and perhaps the most disappointing, was the huge areas of text 
=that were confusing and seemingly disjointed.  []
=I should (or so I feel) be able to understand what was written, 
=just by traslation; otherwise, it is just jibberish, qar'a'?

You are, of course, right; I would say that, when i started this off, I
knew no Klingon, and would claimed to have learnt it pretty rapidly in the
past couple of months... But I see no reason for you to list the difficulties
to me in private; I'm sure the whole list would benefit from *any* criticism
of text (I know I have, seeing others' text criticised in the past). So do
air my dirty laundry in public ;) (A note: I mailed out the first chapter
twice, because the text I used for the first wasn't the text Wilson wants
for the texts.) And... well, yes, I am curious to see your threshold for
gibberish; since I've succumbed to the Shoulson disease of literal 
translation ;) , my sentence structure is, perhaps, much closer to the original
Greek than comfort might allow...

I await your response with interest. Qapla'!

"Relax." -- "yIleS." [Three seconds pause.] "Stop Relaxing!" -- "yIleSHa'!"
                                  --- the Conversational Klingon tape.
   Nick "I am not a Klingon. Much." Nicholas.
nIchyon jIH. nIchyon SoHbe'. nIchyon ghaHbe'. nIchyon tlhIHbe'. nIchyon jIHqu'.

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