tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Thu Feb 07 10:42:49 2002

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Re: omitting {lu-}

Sean Healy asks:

>>>Should have been {Daq qev ghotpu'} - but can {qev} be transitive?
>>If it is, that should be {Daq luqev ghotpu'} with the {lu-} prefix: "they
>>[do something to] it".
>Is there not canon that says {lu-} is often left off?  Of course, I simply 
>made a mistake in this case (rather a lot of them actually, in the 
>original sentence), but I seem to remember something about {lu-} not being 
>used consistently.

You're right:  It is often omitted with {tu'lu'} as a common, but very 
widespread, colloquial mistake - analogous to the disappearance of "whom" 
or the use of double negatives in contemporary English.  ghunchu'wI' 
reported that at qep'a' loSDIch "Robyn Stewart's idea of {lutu'lu'} as the 
Klingon version of 'whom' got a nod and an explicit lack of contradiction 
[from Okrand]. {naDev tlhInganpu' lutu'lu'} *is* grammatical, but the {lu-} 
is more often left off."

Okrand later incorporated this into KGT when discussing the finer points of 
using {tu'lu'} "there are, there is":

"Except in formal situations, however, the omission of {lu-} in such cases 
is overlooked. Though technically an error, and jarring to many Klingons' 
ears, it causes no confusion as to the intended meaning of the sentence. It 
is important to note that this does not mean that the use of {lu-} is 
optional; it is left off only under specific conditions." (KGT:172)

Ca'Non Master of the Klingons

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