tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Thu Jul 11 16:05:03 2002

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Re: beachquestion #4: two verbs

From: "Steven Boozer" <>
> >Remember, Klingon sentences are NOT English sentences backward.  Only the
> >OVS structure is backward; if you string several clauses in a row, you're
> >going to be listening to them in the order they're said, not in reverse
> True, but how about [...]

Oh, I'm not saying that you can't do it.  I've just noticed people sometimes
taking long strings of words that, while correct Klingon, are clearly built
by reversing the English they were translated from, not by constructing the
sentence from a Klingon start.  In a Klingon sentence, the subject will come
at the end of an OVS clause, not necessarily at the absolute end of a
complete utterance.

Basically, the text of TKD, pp. 61-62, suggests that when using sentence
conjunctions, the subject will be placed on the first verb, and elided from
subsequent verbs.  Clearly, canon has shown that this isn't always the case,
but the principle is still valid for complex sentences.

Instead of

yaS tlha' 'ej juS 'ej qIp 'ej pummoH 'ej jon HoD,

we might be better off with

yaS tlha' HoD 'ej juS 'ej qIp 'ej pummoH 'ej jon.

Or, instead of

QeH 'ej moH 'ej Doj 'ej Dun 'ej HoSghaj HoD

we should probably use

QeH HoD 'ej moH 'ej Doj 'ej Dun 'ej HoSghaj.

> Or how about this famous proverb:
>    qaStaHvIS wa' ram loS SaD Hugh SIjlaH qetbogh loD.
>    Four thousand throats may be cut in one night by a running man. TKD/TKW

It's not as backward as you might think.  /qaStaHvIS wa' ram/ is its own OVS
element.  Once you've read it, you have the time context under
consideration, and you don't have to keep the pieces of the clause in your
head while you parse the rest of the sentence.  /qaStaHvIS wa' ram/ "while
one night occurs."  The concept is complete.

/loSSaD Hugh SIjlaH qetbogh loD/.  This is a fairly simply OVS structure of
its own.  That the subject is /qetbogh loD/ is not any harder than if it
were, say, a /tlhIngan loD/.

Stardate 2526.7

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