tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Thu Mar 03 23:49:56 1994

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Re: vIH

On Mar 3, 10:50pm, [email protected] wrote:
> Subject: Re: vIH
> According to this patternqoq of determining which words can be used
> adjectivally in Hol by whether TKD lists their English meaning with an
> English adjective, then we should consider {HeghmoH} as properly adjectival
> in Hol because its English translation is "be fatal."

     I know you are being sarcastic here, but the sarcasm fails on the simple
point that I suspect a lot of people would argue that {HeghmoH} CAN be used
adjectivally. {Qagh HeghmoH} is a "fatal mistake". It satisfies the
"patternqoq" criterion and the stative criterion. It does conflict with the
"{-qu'} is the only verbal suffix to be used on verbs being used
adjectivally" rule, so in that way it is controversial. The question becomes
whether {HeghmoH} is just an example of a verb that has a suffix or if it is
one of the verbs that is so old in its usage that the suffix has been
absorbed into the verb to essentially become a new root verb. Okrand is,
unfortunately, quite vague on this point. (So what's new?)
> If indeed words like {wuQ}
> could be used adjectivally, then how would TKD explain this. 

     The pattern{na'} describes two instances in which the English-Klingon
side of the word list gives multiple definitions separated by commas for
something that has only one definition on the Klingon-English side. One is
explicitly described as "All such words are entered with the ADJECTIVE first,
followed by the accurate translation..." (my emphasis added). {wuQ} does not
follow this pattern. If something like {wuQ} were to be adjectivally useful,
then the first word of the definition would have to be an English adjective.
"Headache" is not usually considered to be an adjective. [That's the
beginning and end of my sarcasm, given that I rarely see sarcasm as useful.]

> The evidence
> is insufficient to make thorough conclusions, and would only confuse people
> using TKD who might not readily understand such vague concepts anyways.

     I simply disagree.
> {meQ} is an adjectival. We have canonical evidence for it; there's no way
> around it. 

     This probably deserves more specific attention. I feel like whatever
meaning there is in the example has been dilluted in memory such that it has
become a vague reference to be used as a weapon against certain arguements.
The weapon has become dull. Time to sharpen it a bit, if it is to be used.

> Similarly, {pegh} is an adjectival. 

     Meanwhile, {pegh} simply fits the pattern. In the Klingon-English side,
it says only "keep something secret". In the English-Klingon side, it says
"secret, keep something secret", stating the adjectival meaning first, then
the verbal meaning. You've chosen an example that substantiates the arguement
you are attempting to disprove.

> We don't know if {wuQ} is an
> adjectival. 

     I am apparently far less confused about this than you. It is NOT a verb
that can be used adjectivally. "The first word in the English entry is the
key word in the phrase, followed by the proper translation." While these two
cases (English adjectives vs. English phrases each translated into Klingon
verbs) are similar in appearance, they are not all that difficult to
disambiguate. I doubt that you really can't tell the difference. I think that
you are ignoring the clear difference for the sake of your argument.

> All we can be sure of is that adjectivals follow a somewhat loose
> pattern, and are idiosyncratic to the native speakers of Hol. Until this
> pattern is better understood, we should just stick to what we know from the
> canon, and use our good judgment when it comes to other verbs not yet found
> anywhere in canon.
> Guido#1, Leader of All Guidos

     I would prefer to be more impressed with your argument. I would like to
be somewhat swayed in my opinion. Not from THESE words, however. I'm open to
further attempts, but you'll have to carry a bit more substance if you really
expect me to change my mind on this.


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