tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Wed Jun 19 15:26:08 2002

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Re: Was: RE: cha'DIch KLBC rI' BG

> ja'pu' vay':
> >> What I was trying to say is that either no sentence needed the {-pu'}, or
> >> else the fact that the first sentence already provided the information that
> >> the action was already completed, the others could inherit that.  If there
> >> were absolutely zero time context, then all three sentences would need
> >> {-pu'}, as all three actions had been completed.
ja'pu' ghunchu'wI':
> Canon actually gives us something nearly the opposite of this.  From Skybox S8
> "Bat'telh -- Klingon Sword of Honor":
>   ...nuja' tlhingan wIch ja'wI'pu' yIntaHvIs qeylIS'e'
>   lIjlaHbe'bogh vay' batlh 'etlhvam chenmoHlu'pu'.
>   ...According to Klingon legend, this sword of honor
>   descends from the time of Kahless the Unforgettable.

While I agree that this is a curious use of {-pu'}, I see it as similar as 
giving my age as {loSmaH Sochben jIboghpu'}, which is the way Okrand says to do 
it. The time stamp, in this example, is a time span with some obvious breadth 
to it. If Kahless made the sword while he was living, then part of this time 
span was passing before the sword existed, a brief moment of the span was 
passing while the sword was being made and the rest of the time this time span 
passed after the sword had been made.

My wild guess is that when one makes a reference to the fossilized "Time of 
Kahless, the unforgettable", yIntaHvIS qeylIS'e' lIjlaHbe'bogh vay', we are for 
the most part talking mostly about the time of Kahless's living influence. We 
don't hear a lot of talk about Kahless as a boy. Mostly, it is about Kahless as 
an adult warrior and leader.

One presumes he made the sword early on in this time period, so for most of the 
period, the sword had been made.

This is a logical stretch, but it is as close as I can get to describing this 
use of {-pu'}. It is similar to describing one's age, since {loSmaH Sochben} 
was a whole year long, and my birth was a relatively brief event. Most of that 
duration occurred when my birth was complete, and since we always measure our 
age in complete years, we never claim another year until the aniversary moment 
of our birth is past.
Likely, it would be interesting to study this use of Type 7 verb suffixes 
relating to time stamps with signficant duration to see how consistent the 
language is in this regard. Likely, even voragh wouldn't have canon 
sufficiently catalogued to pull this off, though. I certainly lack time to do 
it justice.


> The {-taHvIS} and {-pu'} in connected phrases are very difficult for me to
> make settle down well in my mind.  It looks like the time context is set as
> Kahless' lifetime, but then the main verb is marked as completed, making me
> think that the sword was made *before* Kahless.  If it weren't a canonical
> example written by Marc Okrand, I'd argue that it was a mistake.  As it is,
> I accept it as correct usage, but I don't think its particular variety of
> correctness should be emulated. :)
> -- ghunchu'wI'

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