tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Tue Feb 23 16:54:45 1999

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RE: KLBC: Class

jatlh Adam Snyder:

> How would I say "the class has 300 students"? I cannot find a word 
> for "class".

> I have thought about it, here is what I have thus far:

> <wejvatlh ghojwI' ghaj ______>

> I thought that I could use <ghojwI' ghom> ("group of students") for
> "class". However, I am pretty sure that the <N1 N2> structure for "N2 
> of N1" only works for possession. I racked my brain, looking for a 
> round-about way of saying "class" the best I could do was, <tay' 'ej 
> ghojlI'> (ridiculously difficult to use as a subject). HIQaH. 

What does "class" mean to you in this context? Is it the unit of
intellectual material you are studying this semester? The period of time in
which you go to school and listen to lecture? The group of students you
listen to the lecture with? The lectures themselves? Counting just the
school related meanings, "class" is a complex word with a fair bit of human
culture built into it. We don't even know if Klingons structure schools this
way - we don't even do it this way universally on Earth. It's no wonder
there is no word in Klingon which corresponds to it exactly.

In this case, you obviously want the "group of students" meaning - <ghojwI'
ghom>. The noun-noun construction works just fine for this sort of thing.
TKD calls the noun-noun construction "posessive", but that's a bit
misleading. A good way to think of it is this: <N1 N2> means the same thing
as "N2 of N1". English is actually pretty similar in this respect.

Finally, <ghaj> is not a good choice here. We use "have" very broadly in
English, but the Klingon <ghaj> should be used more restrictively. It's
defined as "have, posess", and the word "posess" is a good way to think
about it. Can a class have/own/posess the students? I don't think so. It -
the group - could certainly have/own/posess the communal beer keg, but I
don't think it can "posess" the members of the group. 

What you want to do is say something like "There are three hundred students
in the class." The Klingon uses <tu'lu'>, which literally means "one finds",
but is most often translated as "there is" or "there are".

ghojwI' ghomDaq wejvatlh ghojwI'pu' lutu'lu'.

Beginners' Grammarian

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