tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Fri Feb 22 17:59:25 2002

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Re: agentive -wI'

> Lawrence wrote:
> >tagha' bI'ang'egh choHoHwI'wI'. jIHeghlI' 'a HIvje'lIj tar vIlanta'. ghIq
> >qaHoHwI'lI' jIH.
> >
> >Finally the "you-kill-me"-er reveals himself. I am dying, but I put poison
> >in your glass. Thus, I am your "I-kill-you"-er.
> Will wrote (not in direct response):
> >A {bomwI'} is a singer. Not a song singer. That would be a {bom bomwI'}. 
> >One who conquers it/him/her/them would be {'oH/ghaH/ghaH/chaH charghwI'}.
> Then would you say this is correct:
> tagha' 'ang'egh jIH HoHwI'.
> Finally, he who kills me reveals himself.

The problem here is that when a pronoun is the possessor, you represent this in 
Klingon with a Type 4 noun suffix instead of using the pronoun itself (except 
in a couple strange locative constructions I'll leave undescribed at this 
point). This should be:

tagha' 'ang'egh HoHwI'wI'.

Yes, it's ambiguous as to whether is is killing me or whether he is a killer 
employed by me. The same is true in English. "My killer". Is he killing me, or 
working for me? If you want to disambiguate it in English, you use a relative 
clause, just like you would in Klingon. "The person who is killing me" or "the 
killer I hired." muHoHbogh nuv -- HoHwI' vIra'bogh.

> If it isn't correct, why not?  If {HoHwI'} can have a third-person object, as 
> it apparently can, why not first or second person?

It can't have any object at all. That's my whole point.
> And if it is correct, why?  Why not {jIH muHoHwI'} or just {muHoHwI'}?  
> Wouldn't those be the same thing?

Both of those terms are gibberish. You can't use a prefix on a nominalized verb 
with {-wI'}.
> I hope this isn't taken as confrontational or stupid.  This debate is going 
> over my head somewhat; I'm just trying to figure it out.

I respect that. It took me weeks to understand the simple concept that when a 
stative verb preceeds a noun, it acts like "be adjective", but when it follows 
it, it acts like an adjective. The difference between {Doq taj} and {taj Doq} 
took an embarrassingly long time to sink in. If anybody on this list has ever 
been stupid, I've been leader of that particular pack.

It takes time to take this in. Meanwhile, when I see people I know who are 
definitely skilled enough to do impressive things with the language become 
misled enough to promote a really strange idea with seeming authority, I feel a 
strong urge to leap in and kill the argument before less experienced people 
become confused by the misleading arguments presented by those these new people 
trust to present the truths of the language.

> -Sengval


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