tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Sun Mar 10 15:03:08 2002

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Re: -bogh

> SuStel wrote:
> >For example,
> >    HoHbogh SuvwI' 'ej qabDaj 'angbe'bogh
> >    warrior who kills and who doesn't reveal his face
> >There is no sentence here, there is just a complicated noun phrase.  The
> >VERBS are being joined by /'ej/.
> Or you can put {SuvwI'} at the end of the string:
>    HoHbogh 'ej qabDaj 'angbe'bogh SuvwI'
> on the model of:
>   romuluSngan Sambogh 'ej HoHbogh nejwI'
>   Romulan hunter-killer probe  (KCD)

While it is my bias to think of this as an odd example, I think even with that 
aside, it is worth looking at the difference between this example and the one 
following. This example is odd because of the word {romuluSngan}. The real noun 
phrase here is {romuluSngan nejwI'} and Okrand is trying to toss {Sambogh 'ej 
HoHbogh} in to modify {nejwI'} and not {romuluSngan}.

If he had stated it as {romuluSngan Sambogh nejwI' 'ej HoHbogh}, it would sound 
a lot like "The probe that seeks and finds a Romulan and kills him."

If he had paired up the noun-noun possessive pair, it would have come out 
something like {Sambogh 'ej HoHbogh romuluSngan nejwI'}. That looks like "The 
probe of the Romulan who seeks, finds and kills."

As he stated it, it looks a lot like "The romulan who is sought and found and 
the probe which kills him."

He could have more clearly said, {SammeH 'ej HoHmeH nejwI''e' chenmoHbogh 
romuluSngan}. It's wordy and he probably just didn't think of it.

Meanwhile, my suspicion is that Okrand was squeezed into an uncomfortable 
translation because Paramount wanted a noun phrase and Okrand wanted a 
paycheck. Klingon doesn't make very good noun phrases, compared to the 
excellent whole, verb-centric sentences that it was built to make. Okrand was 
given a screw and a hammer. What did you expect him to do with them?

I personally pay a lot more attention to the sentences that Okrand makes than I 
do the noun labels he puts on posters or CDs. That's my choice, however, and 
obviously, other people here like noun phrases as much as paramount, so I'll 
get out of their way and let them write what they will.

> Since there's no noun following the first {-bogh}, the reader is forced to 
> look for it at the end, thereby tying the whole phrase more closely 
> together IMHO.  This, however, is a matter of personal style and is a 
> minority preference on this list.  There is also a counter-example from KGT:
>    SuDbogh Dargh 'ej wovbogh
>    The tea that is {SuD} and light.
>    (meaning "light green/yellow tea")
> where Okrand kept the governing noun with the first {-bogh}.


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