tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Thu Jun 13 10:55:19 2002

Back to archive top level

To this year's listing

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]

Re: sequence (was Re: KLBC: Phrase)

Okrand wrote on st.klingon:
> >It is possible to join the sentences with a conjunction such as {'ej} and
> >or {'ach} but:
> >   wam chaH 'ej ghIq Soj luvut.
> >   They hunt and then they prepare food.

Andrew Strader wrote:
>I defer this to an interesting tidbit on Klingon grammar recorded on Teresh's
>home page.
>   [...]
>6.2.1. Compound sentences
>        1.The conjunction 'ej merely indicates the (simultaneous?) occurence
>of two events; there is no time sequence implied, eg. mabom 'ej matlhutlh
>"We sing and we drink", not *"We sing and then drink" [MSN, 3/20/98]
>        2.Sequence seems to be indicated by the lack of a conjunction, eg.
>bogh tlhInganpu', SuvwI'pu' moj, Hegh "Klingons are born, become warriors,
>then die."; beyHom bey bey'a' jachtaH "They are letting out an ever-louder
>howl." [TKW, p5; S31]

Here's the full text of Okrand's post on the old MSN expert_forum (3/20/98) 
for those interested:

     As far as I know, {'ej} means "and" in the sense of "in addition," "also,"
   "as well as," and the like. It does not have any temporal or sequential
   implications. That is, it does not (by itself) mean "and then."
     For example, Klingon {jISop 'ej jItlhutlh} "I eat and I drink" means 
"I eat
   and also I drink." It could refer to events that occur in alternating 
   (eat some, drink some, eat some, drink some more) or, especially in the case
   of some Klingons, events that occur pretty much simultaneously. It could 
   mean "I eat and then I drink," but it does not necessarily mean that. If 
   is the intended meaning (and if being a little vague or ambiguous or unclear
   will cause misunderstanding and hence discomfort), additional stuff must be
   added or the whole thing must be rephrased to make the meaning explicit
   (such as {jItlhutlhpa' jISop} "before I drink, I eat".
     Similarly, the most likely interpretation of {jItlhutlh 'ej jIQong} "I 
   and I sleep" is not that I drink in my sleep (though it could be used 
for that
   if I really did it), but rather simply "I drink and also I sleep," a listing
   of two things I do, presumably (but not explicitly) not at the same time.
     Then there's {qaDuQ 'ej bIregh} "I stab you and you bleed". It 
probably would
   be used when the stabbing precedes (and is the direct cause of) the 
bleeding. But
   it doesn't explicitly say that; it only says "I stab you" and it also 
says "you
     The sequential interpretation (and/or the cause-and-effect 
interpretation) is
   due to the way the world works. Or some worlds. Since it is possible to say
   either {jISop, jItlhutlh} "I eat, I drink" or {jISop 'ej jItlhutlh} "I 
eat and
   I drink" to refer to the same thing, it might seem as though {'ej} is 
   Grammatically, that's fair to say. In terms of meaning, however, when 
{'ej} is
   used, it adds something; it emphasizes or points out some sort of connection
   between the two events--though not necessarily a temporal one.
     Finally, although I've been referring to "events," the same holds for 
   and conditions and the like. Thus, {jIghung 'ej jIQeH} "I'm hungry and 
I'm angry"
   could be used if first I'm hungry and then (whether as a result of the 
pangs or
   not) I get angry, or if I'm hungry and angry at the same time, or if I waver
   between the two. In short, {'ej} is neutral as to time.

Okrand later revealed the adverbials {ghIq} "and then, after that, by then, 
subsequently" in HolQeD 8.3 and {ngugh} "then, at that time", {tagha'} 
"finally, at last" and the idiomatic phrase {pumDI' ['etlh]} "by then, by 
that time" (lit. "when it [the blade] falls") on st.klingon (11/05/99) 
which - in addition to the verb suffixes {-DI'} "as soon as, when", {-pa'} 
"before" and the adverbial {vaj} "so, then, thus, in that case" already 
known from TKD - provide more precise control over the "temporal or 
sequential implications".

Ca'Non Master of the Klingons

Back to archive top level