tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Fri Apr 23 07:26:43 1999

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Re: More than one "adjective"

jatlh Voragh:
>I'm a little unclear myself just how we would use these patterns in
>sentences. For example, "I see Maltz's big, red ball."
>matlh moQ tIn vIlegh; Doq.
>I see Maltz's big ball; it's red.
>So far, so good. Nice and terse, if a little odd to Terrans. Remember
>Worf's classic TNG line: "Good tea. Nice house." This may be the simplest
>Klingon style.

Just notice that this is making something more out of the fact that the
ball is red (or rather, {Doq}).  It is not on equal terms with its being

> I'm not sure about the {-bogh} method, however. (That may
>be because I've always a little confused by {-bogh} and {-lu'},
>when they occur together!). Give me your opinions of:
>tInbogh matlh moQ 'ej Doqbogh vIlegh. (?)
>tInbogh matlh moQ vIlegh 'ej Doqbogh. (?)
>I see Maltz's ball which is big and (which is) red.

The first one is correct.  In TKD, we learn that you can construct complex
sentences by combining two simple sentences with a sentence conjunction
({'ej}, {qoj}, or {pagh}).  However, we also know that a "sentence" in
Klingon is a slippery thing.  Sometimes it refers only to the
OBJECT-VERB-SUBJECT clause, sometimes it refers to all the
beginning-of-the-sentence add-ons, and sometimes it refers only to the
verb.  It's this last one that applies here.  The two verbs {tIn} and
{Doq} are being conjoined with {'ej}.  They just happen to have {-bogh}s
on them.

I'd personally put {matlh} outside the {-bogh}s.  With this change, the
sentence reads:

matlh tInbogh moQ 'ej Doqbogh vIlegh.
I see Maltz's big, red ball.

If we were not to elide the subject of the {Doqbogh} word, it would read

matlh tInbogh moQ 'ej Doqbogh moQ vIlegh.

This might, of course, be interpreted as "I see Maltz's big ball and his
red ball" (as if there were two balls), but I don't see why this wouldn't
be chalked up to an inherent vagueness in the language.

Your second sentence, {tInbogh matlh moQ vIlegh 'ej Doqbogh} comes out
something like "I see Maltz' big ball and which is red."  I'm
intentionally translating it like that to point out how it doesn't work in
the Klingon.  The {'ej} isn't connecting two verbs.

>Finally, a challenge for the experts. How would you translate a more
>complicated example: 
>"I see Gowron and Pok's old, green, dirty bottle of excellent, ancient
>Regulan bloodwine."

The complex version:

ghawron poq je povbogh reghuluS 'Iw HIq 'ej tIQbogh ngaSbogh qanbogh bal
'ej SuDbogh 'ej lambogh.

I'd never really say that.  I'd say the simple version:

ghawron poq je bal vIlegh.  qan bal, SuD, 'ej lam.  povbogh reghuluS 'Iw
HIq 'ej tIQbogh ngaS.


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