tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Sun Mar 06 23:25:36 1994

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>From: Will Martin <[email protected]>
>Date: Mon, 7 Mar 94 11:42:22 EST

>On Mar 5, 10:06pm, Captain Krankor wrote:
>> Subject: Qaghqoq
>> [NOTE:  Though this started in beginner-mode, this post is
>>  a direct reply to charghwI' and as such is not necessarily
>>  at beginner level]
>> >> Bertha ghajpa' qorDu'wIj, targh pIm wIghajpu'.
>> >
>> >nuq? qorDu'lI' Dapar? {{:)> qub Qanqor Qaghmey. Hu'mey Qaghvam rap
>> >QaghwIj tu'ta' Qanqor 'ej tlhaQqu' QaghwIj 'e' Qub Qanqor.
>> >
>> >     mwaaahahahahahaha....
>> >
>> >charghwI'
>> Qagh nuq?  Qagh vIleghbe'.  -wIj vIlo'mo'?  lughbej -wIj.  Hol lo'be'bej
>> qorDu'.  Hol lo'ba' qorDu'Daq nuvpu', 'ach rapbe' Dochmeyvam.  jIQaghbe'
>> 'ej mu'meywIj vIchoHqangbe'.  bIHagh 'e' Damev DaH 'e' vIchaw'.
>>                     --Qanqor

>Interesting point. More accurately, I think it is a point unaddressed in
>TKD. If a family is not capable of using language, though its members are
>capable of using language because the group is a different kind of noun than
>an individual, then any other group of jatlhwI'pu' would similarly not
>receive the jalthwI' possessive suffixes. Hmm. Then it would seem that "my
>brothers" should be "loDnI'pu'wIj", which sounds pretty derrogatory to me. It
>is also weird because one suffix says they can speak while the other says
>they can't.

>Then again, "loDnI'mey" is not derrogatory. It just means that the
>brothers are scattered all over the place. Meanwhile "loDnI'wIj" IS
>derrogatory. I'd hedge my bets and say {qorDu'wI'}. Families are easily
>disturbed by misunderstandings, and I prefer to err toward excessive respect.

No, I think you're missing the point here.  There's a distinct differerence
between "qorDu'" and "loDnI'pu'".  The second is a plural, the first is a
*collective*.  Its members are collected and referred to not just as more
than one of them, but as a group whose properties are different from the
members.  People have two legs.  Does my family have two legs?  Is my
family 25 years old (I am) or 21 (like my sister) or what?  I use language.
My brother uses language, and if I had more than one brother I'd be talking
about the plural of a noun that's sentient: loDnI'pu'wI'.  But my *family*
doesn't.  COnsider in English; we consider a brother a "he" and a sister a
"she", and when talking about a sibling we feel compelled to say something
like "he or she" (never it).  But a family is an "it" to us: My family is
not so large that I don't know everyone in *it*.  It's harder to see when
we pluralize, since English doesn't draw the chaH/bIH distinction, and I'm
not saying that 'oH/ghaH is precisely equivalent to it/[he,she] in English,
but it is a good way to start thinking of it.  We insist on calling animals
"it" even though they have a perfectly respectable sex, even when we know
what it is.  But people are called "he/she" even when the sex is unknown,
since "it" is for objects in English.  That's a good place to start for
"'oH/ghaH" in Klingon, I think.

I just had the same discussion with Guido#1 on my Jonah translation, with
the same answer...



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