tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Mon Jan 04 18:25:12 1999

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Re: chuyDaH+mey (was Re: Problem Words)

ja' charghwI':
>The interesting confusion Okrand then leaves us with is that
>since these words are supposed to be treated grammatically
>singular, what happens when we put a number in front of them? Do
>we still treat is grammatically singular? Is the plural suffix
>the only thing we don't do to consider it plural? It is a bit
>messy yet.

Oh.  *Now* I see what you are talking about.  They are inherently plural,
thus they never get a plural suffix -- but can they fit in a sentence as
a true plural?  Does the presence of a quantifier make a difference?  I
thought you were worried about quantifying them in the first place, not
what you did about the suffix when they were quantified.  I apologize
for misunderstanding your problem and coming back with misaimed answers
based on the obviously plural usage on the poster.

The sentence on the poster which says {muDDaq 'eDSeHcha lulaQlu'bogh: jav}
uses a word translated as "take-off/landing thrusters", which is similar in
character to {chuyDaH} "thrusters" -- and it *does* have a plural-indicating
verb prefix.  If we aren't allowed to put a plural suffix on the word even
when it's definitely being used in a plural fashion, that would be odd.

Not that odd is bad, of course. :)

>The real mess we can't resolve yet is how to deal with multiple
>clusters in terms of grammatically singular treatment of
>inherantly plural nouns with numbers in front of them. How would
>you answer:
>chuyDaH 'ar lughaj cha' tlharghDuj?
>When you give your answer, does the verb have {lu-} or not?

It doesn't if you're talking about {'eDSeHcha} instead of {chuyDaH}.  It's
not a perfect answer, but I think it helps a lot.

-- ghunchu'wI'

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