tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Tue Jan 26 16:55:05 1999

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Re: Transitive / Intransitive

In a message dated 1/26/1999 4:59:46 PM US Mountain Standard Time, writes:

<<  jIHob
 > is being intransitive (subject is me verb is yawn)
 > 'e' neH jIH
 > is transitive (I want it [refering to the previous topic]) >>

Questions which help us better understand Klingon are always okay.

First, your question concerns what is transitive; what is intransitive?

You're on the right track, I feel.  Taking a direct object is transitivity.
Not taking an object is intransitivity.  Klingon uses two distinct sets of
pronominal verb prefixes to indicate whether an object is present.

{jISop} means "I eat," in general.  I am not telling anybody what I eat, only
that I eat.

{vISop} means "I eat it."  "It" is the object.

{qagh vISop} means "I eat serpent worms served alive as food."  {qagh} is the

Klingon does not allow such sentences as {qagh jISop} because that sentence
has an object and the verb prefix {jI-} indicates "no object."

Next, you are correct with {jIHob}.  You are "yawning something."

But, {'e' neH jIH} should be {'e' vIneH}.  {'e'} is the object of {neH}, and
you are saying "I want that" so you need the verb prefix {vI-}.  You can
append {jIH} but it is not necessary and is redundant unless you are really
trying to emphasize, "I, that's right I, want to."


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