tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Thu Mar 31 03:00:17 1994

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Re: mujatlhmoH nuq jay'

> >                     nujatlhmoH yInQeD'e'
> I like these solutions. But, what is the difference between the statement
> above and
>                       nujatlhmoH yInQeD?
> (Sorry for asking silly questions, but I really can't figure it out.)

     Well, the {-'e'} suffix is not so easy to grok that you should give
yourself too much grief for not seeing the difference here. I'm not sure *I*
have the hang of it, for that matter. For me, it is a question of emphasis.
Why am I saying this sentence? I am saying it to draw attention to the word
{yInQeD}. BIOLOGY causes us to talk.

     FLASH! It just hit me. The {-moH} suffix essentially makes the verbal
prefix indicate the subject and object of the causation, not the action of
the verb. Okay, maybe everybody else already knew that. Anyway, this means
that there is grammatically no place left to indicate the object of the
action of the verb. The SUBJECT of the action of the verb is the OBJECT of
the causation of the verb. All this is why {-moH} doesn't really work all
that well with transitive verb stems unless they are being used
intransitively. (Ain't language talk grand?)

     So how do I say, "I caused you to hit him,"? Umm. Well. You don't. Umm,
you might say that I ORDERED you to hit him, which is accurate and easy to
say with ye olde sentence-as-object construction. Meanwhile, I can say that I
cause you to be angry, but I can't say that I cause you to hit him. If I took
what I interpret to be Krankor's view on this, I might say 
{chaH qaqIpmoHta'}. Note: I do not represent Krankor here. He speaks for
himself quite well. I'm just trying to understand one of his recent posts.

     In this, I would interpret {chaH} to be one of those nouns (Okay, so it
is a pronoun; I'm USING it like a noun here) that is mysteriously not an
object, yet attached to the verb all the same, so it would go at the
beginning of the sentence. I don't understand this. It does not look like we
really have anything in TKD to justify it specifically and if we use the
"Every noun that's not an object goes first" rule for this, I fear we open a
loophole large enough for a galaxy class vessel...

     Anyway, for me {nujatlh yInQeD'e'} makes more sense than {nujatlh
yInqeD} because... how can I say this? This sentence is an answer to a
question nobody asked. The essence of the answer is {yInQeD'e'}. The echo of
the question is {nujatlh}. If there were no implied question ("What was it
that caused you guys to talk?"), then you would have no reason to ever make
the statement. You could just say, {majatlh}. The topic of the sentence is
{yInQeD'e'}. That's what {-'e'} does. It pulls out a big cardboard arrow and
holds it overhead where everybody can see it and points to the noun that is
the whole point of the sentence. So to speak. 
> Yeah, it would be my guess, too. So, would my sentence be: nujatlhmoH 
> Hol'e'? Or is it maybe OK to write nuja'chuqmoH Hol'e', since the object of
> the verb ja'chuqmoH is really the *subject* of the ja'chuq, and object is
> null? (The language makes us discuss. No object on 'discuss').

     My guess is that the first sentence is good and the second one is not.
TKD 4.2.1 gives examples of all the acceptable verb prefixes that go with
{chuq}. {nu-} is not on the list. I really think it comes down to exactly
that. You cannot combine {-chuqmoH} unless you are saying that the plural
subjects are causing each other to do the verb. {maja'chuqmoH}, for example,
would mean, "We cause each other to tell." Spies might say this after a
session of coerced secret exchange...

>         qoran


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