tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Fri Feb 19 10:01:31 1999

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Re: ma'veq: It's official

maq loD Doq:
>  I do not care. I am, on occasion, willing to sacrifice
>  perfect grammar in the interest of clarity. People do it all the time.


If you think some expression or construction is clearer by being grammatically
incorrect then it would be if it were grammatically correct, the reason is
probably that the language that you're using doesn't match the grammatical
description you're using.   If your usage is really clearer, it is so because
it *is* grammatical, by the matching grammar.

This is, for example, what people do when they end English sentences with
words they call "prepositions", which are really, in those constructions,
functioning as adverbs.  If you were taught a grammar based on an incomplete
analysis of the real language,  you might think: "So the wrong way is better.
That means grammar is garbage."   No; it's just a counterexample to the
particular grammar you were taught, which doesn't match the version of English
you're using.

You might, of course, be using a version of English that most speakers
consider substandard and won't tolerate.  Likewise, if you won't follow
Klingon grammar, most Klingon users won't tolerate your usage.  That's nothing
personal, unless by inner nature you really are a compulsive rule-breaker.


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