tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Tue May 25 17:18:43 1999

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Re: SachtaH Holmaj!

jatlh Holtej:

>> In a message dated 5/13/1999 9:47:35 AM US Mountain Standard Time,
>> writes:
>> << I think that peHruS is confused by the phrase {jatlhmeH mIwmey}
>>  procedures".  The plural noun {mIwmey} is not the subject of the
>>  verb {jatlh} but the plural object of the main verb {qel}.  >>
>> ===========
>> peHruS would like to have been reading mIwmey as only the object of the
>> qel all along.  But, I recall several accusations aimed at me about not
>> including a head noun to a dependent clause.  So, I indirectly questioned
>> what the head noun would be if not mIwmey in a double role.
>Oh, I see.  (Hadn't read this before sending my previous post.)  For
clarity, the sentence
>we're considering is {jatlhmeH mIwmey qel wa' nav}.  As far as the prefixes
are concerned,
>it doesn't matter whether you consider the syntax to be
> [V-meH] O V S
>or [V-meH S] V S
>The prefixes would be the same.  My first reading took it the 2nd way, as
>mIwmey} as the object.  Is there a compelling reason to prefer one
structure over the
>other?  (General question, not directed specifically at peHruS.)

I don't think so, although I also had the 2nd interpretation in mind.
However, the difference matters when we have a negative sentence:
{HaDmeH paq ghajbe' puq}
1st: In order to study, the child doesn't have a book.
2nd: The child doesn't have a study book (book-to-study).
Here the meanings are totally different. The 1st translation says that the
purpose of the child's not having a book is studying [something]. The 2nd
translation says that the child doesn't have a book whose purpose is that it
is used for studying.

>I don't have a problem
>with a {-meH} clause not having an overt head noun; consider for example
TKW p. 5:
>TKW p. 5
>{SuvmeH 'ej charghmeH bogh tlhInganpu'}
>Klingons are born to fight and live to conquer.
>The questionable area is when you have a {-bogh} clause with no head noun
(a "headless

I think we should keep in mind that a {-meH} clause can either describe a
noun, like {jatlhmeH mIwmey}, or a verb, like {SuvmeH 'ej charghmeH bogh
[tlhInganpu']}. If you want to use the term "head noun" when talking about
{-meH} clauses, it only applies for the former kind of usage of {-meH}. And
then it indeed plays a double role in the sentence, just like it does in
{-bogh} clauses. Cf. {QongmeH _Daq_ vISamlaHbe'} / {Qongbogh _Ha'DIbaH_

As for {-bogh} sentences without a head noun, I think MO said he couldn't
make anything besides the subject or object of a sentence work as a head
noun for a {-bogh} clause, i. e. there seem to be clear restrictions in this
area. So I don't feel too encouraged to try something without a head noun at

>> peHruS
>-- Holtej 'utlh
>tlhIngan Hol Mailing List FAQ


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