tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Mon Sep 16 14:44:55 2002

Back to archive top level

To this year's listing

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

Re: Dajatlhbogh

From: "Quvar valer" <>

> {lugh Dajatlhbogh}
> "what you say is correct"
> I'm sure it is grammatically correct. Is there anything that says it is

On the Star Trek: Klingon CD-ROM game, there is a sound file of Okrand
saying, /Dajatlhbogh vIyajbe'/ "I don't understand what you said."

This sound file does not seem to be used anywhere in the game or the
language lab of the CDs.  Thus, some people do not accept it as "official."
(Personally, I find this reasoning to be flawed, as Okrand was not in charge
of which bits of language were to be used in the game.)

> I replaced {Doch} by {'oH}, and we get this:
>  {lugh 'oH Dajatlhbogh}
>  "it which you say is correct"
> TKD says pronouns are "not required", so I have:
>  {lugh Dajatlhbogh}
>  "which you say is correct"

On the other hand, TKD wasn't talking about pronouns in relative clauses,
and there has often been a question about whether you can actually use them
in such clauses, especially as the head noun.

My personal feelings on the matter are this:

(1) The sound file should be included in any citation of "official" Klingon.

(2) The grammaticality of headless relative clauses is in question, and
should not be accepted or denied at this time.

(3) Headless relative clauses should be avoided.  They are very difficult to
parse, especially if there is a non-head pronoun.  (For instance, with the
headless relative clause theory, /lugh mu' Dajatlhbogh/ could be interpreted
as "You, who speak a word, are right," but anybody looking at the phrase
will assume you meant, "The word which you speak is right.")

(4) Don't elide words just to bend the language into something it's not.  At
the very least, don't elide words to prove a point of grammar!

Stardate 2710.0

Back to archive top level