tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Thu Mar 31 07:06:31 1994

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HolQeD letter response

I read Lawrence's message of yesterday saying that he's just gotten the
newsletter in the mail and dicover it in my mail box today.  Oh Joy.

Anyway, Christian Matzke wrote a letter looking at different words for
different races i.e.
tera'ngan	Terran, 'inhabitant of Terra'
romuluSngan	Romulan, 'inhabitant of Romulus'

He then looked at tlhIngan and thought perhaps it would be 'inhabitant of
tlhIn or Klin or some other permutation.

This is odd in several ways.  The most obvious is that the Klingon
homeworld is defined as being called Kronos (Qo'noS).

(A sort of aside, what are the elements of Qo'noS?  Qo' means No!, I
refuse!  noS has no definition but noSvogh is deodorant and vogh is five. 
I don't understand how this works but it gives me this odd feeling that says
the name of the homeworld translates as 'I refuse to bathe!')

Another oddity is to look at it from our own perspective.  We come from a
planet called Earth or Terra or Dirt.  When we were first developing a
language we didn't think of Earth as being a place in the universe, it was
what you stood on.  We developed a name for ourselves, Human.  We didn't
call ourselves Earthlings or Terrans, those useages didn't come to be used
until we started encountering 'others', and they used the term in an
unpleasant or derrorgatory manner.  'Pitiful Earthlings' and the like.

>From that perspective, the word tlhingan as 'inhabitant of Klin' would come
from an older root, referring not to the planet as a whole but to some
other location or state.  One of the FASA modules used the word Klin to be
some measure of honor.  Players collected 'Klin points' for accomplishing
various tasks and the higher the Klin, the greater respect show them.  In
that way, Klingon might be more literally translated as 'inhabitant of
honor' or 'he who dwells in an honorable place', with that place not being
a physical location but a state of being or of mind.  

I think this sounds pretty good even if it is all speculation.

I'd be curious to know more of the entymology of Human and other words
used to describe one's own species.

Kordite, Chief of Intelligence, IKV Dark Justice, Klingon Assault Group
aka Kevin A. Geiselman, Knight Errant

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