tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Mon Jun 14 11:49:20 1999

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SaqaD. jIjatlh:

> Thus I present this KLBC challenge: translate this English sentence.

> --- First, harm not the honor of the patient. ---

> Some advice - a strictly literal translation will NOT be the best
> translation. Also, the hardest part will be "first". Do NOT use <wa'DIch>.

jang ghotpu'. jatlh Nelson Lamoureux:

> bItaghDI' SID batlh yI'oy'be'

<'oy'> is defined as "ache, hurt, be sore", which means that it can't be
used to mean "hurt something else". For that you need to add <-moH>. Also,
<-be'> can't be used with imperatives; you have to use <-Qo'>, so the last
word becomes <... yI'oy'moHQo'>. You have almost succeeded in cleaning up
the grammar of the translation provided in the manual. Unfortunately, you
have not really addressed the bigger problem. Look at what the English
*means*, and figure out how to say that in Klingon.

There are two basic problems with an overly literal translation: the "first"
here does not really mean just "first" - it means "first and foremost" or
"above all"; and "harm the honor of the patient", while it makes for a cute
play on the Hypocratic Oath, is really just a more awkward way of saying
"dishonor the patient". Suggestions on how to fix these problems will

jatlh Jeremy Silver:

> SID quv DaQIDQo' 'e' Hoch Daruchpa'
> SID quv DaQIDQo' 'e' potlh law' Hoch potlh puS'

<SID quv DaQIDQo'> is better than <SID batlh Da'oy'moHQo'>, but still
suffers a similar problem. Can you really "wound" someone's honor?

The <... 'e' Hoch Daruchpa'> just doesn't work. Grammatically, it doesn't
make much sense, and it still suffers from the problem of meaning "first (in
a sequence)" instead of "first and foremost".

The <... 'e' potlh law' Hoch potlh puS> is much better. The law'/puS formula
is fairly rigid, and <'e'> probably cannot be used to replace one of the
nouns. However, this is *exactly* the idea that "first" is meant to convey.

jatlh HomDoq

> SID qaquvHa'moH 'e' Data'Ha'nISchu'qu'.
> (chaq <<Data'be'nISchu'qu'>> QaQ law' 
> <<DataHa'nISchu'qu'>> QaQ puS.)

<SID DaquvHa'moH ...> DaghItlh 'e' DaHech, qar'a'?

bIlugh. mu'tlheghvamvaD <-be'> nIv law' <-Ha'> nIv puS.

This is a good way of saying "Don't dishonor the patient", and getting
across that it is very important.

Here's my suggestion:

SID yIquvHa'moHQo'. Qu'vam potlh law' Hoch potlh puS.

Beginners' Grammarian

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