tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Tue Sep 03 10:59:40 2002

Back to archive top level

To this year's listing

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

Re: question words as verbs?

>>ja' SuStel:
>>>I don't think /qech nuq/ works.  It means "What are ideas?"

>>Couldn't it be translated as "what is the idea?"  That works.

>in that case /nuq/ would be a verb. is that possible?

HIja', DuHbej.  Qum Okrand:

   Question words (in this case, {nuq} "what?") function the same way
   pronouns do in questions with "to be" in the English translations. Thus,
   the question {yIH nuq?} "What is a tribble?" is exactly parallel to the
   statement {yIH 'oH} "It is a tribble" ... The answer to the question
   {yIH nuq?} ("What is a tribble?") would presumably be a definition or
   description of a tribble. This being the case, then, the answer to the
   question {jarlIj qaq nuq?} ("What is your preferable month?") would
   presumably be a definition of your favorite month." (st.klingon)


   Dochvam nuq?
   What is this? CK

   nuq mI'lIj, tera'ngan?
   What is your number, Terran? CK

   Daqvam nuq?
   What is this place? CK

Dropping the pronoun, however, is not required.  You can also speak more 

   Sojvetlh 'oH nuq'e'?
   What is that food?  PK

My notes indicate that TKD (p.69) shows that {'Iv} and {nuq} function in 
the same way.  Another question word that does this is {nuqDaq} "where?":

   nuqDaq 'oH puchpa''e'?
   nuqDaq puchpa'?
   Where is the bathroom?  PK

Note that in "Power Klingon", Okrand actually calls the version without the 
pronoun "clipped".  Another way to think of it in English terms would be as 
a contraction:

   nuqDaq 'oH puchpa''e'?
   Where is the bathroom?

   nuqDaq puchpa'?
   Where's the bathroom?

Ca'Non Master of the Klingons

Back to archive top level