tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Sun Dec 23 14:12:33 2007

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Re: Apology and continued search

David Trimboli ( [KLI Member] [Hol po'wI']

Doq wrote:
>>>> When you say {nuqDaq}, as a locative, is different from other 
>>>> question words, I think you mean that its being a locative
>>>> makes it ineligible to be a subject or object. If that's what
>>>> you mean, it's incorrect. {nuqDaq wIghoS} is a perfectly valid
>>>> sentence, for example.
>>> Quite true. Then again, you are pointing to one of those rather 
>>> idiomatic features of locative nouns and that small set of verbs
>>> that can take locative nouns as direct objects.
>> I don't think locatives are RESTRICTED from being the subject or 
>> object of Klingon sentences. The reason they usually don't appear
>> is that the subject or object has to be locative to have a locative
>> noun. There is little call for such things.
>> I just thought of something that might demonstrate a locative
>> subject:
>> tlhIngan wa': pa'Daq pa' HurDaq ghap 'avwI' vIQammoHlaH. tlhIngan
>> cha': qaq pa'Daq.
>> Yes, you could word this differently, but I don't see any rule or 
>> semantics that prevent you saying it this way.
> The trick here is that you are using context to compress an entire 
> sentence into a single noun. That's normal in English. Likely, it is
>  normal in Klingon as well. I'm sure a Klingon would prefer to say
> {qaq pa'Daq} rather than {pa'Daq 'avwI' DaQammoH 'e' vImaS,} though
> perhaps {pa'Daq 'avwI' yIQamoH} might be appealing enough to warrant
> the extra syllables. Assertiveness does have its cultural value.

It does occur in Klingon. Take, for example, Kruge's {wa' HoH!
jISaHbe'.} Somehow his crewmen were to understand {jISaHbe'} as "I don't
care which one you kill."

But I'm not compressing a sentence into a noun. I meant, quite
literally, "In-the-room is preferable." The only reason I had to add
context was to say what in-the-room was preferable TO.

>>> The point I realize I made poorly was that when you answer an
>>> {'Iv} question, you replace {'Iv} with the noun. When you answer
>>> a {nuq} question, the noun replaces {nuq}. When you answer a
>>> {nuqDaq} question, you answer with the noun plus {-Daq}.
>>> In other words, {nuqDaq} is not really a question word. It fully 
>>> functions as the noun {nuq} with the suffix {-Daq}. For example,
>>> if I ask {nuqDaq maSop?} your answer might be {Qe'Daq maSop.}
>>> Your answer would not be {Qe' maSop} or {Qe' wISop}. In other
>>> words, {nuqDaq} more accurately translates to {at the location of
>>> what?} instead of {where?}. While it is semantically equivalent,
>>> it is not syntactically equivalent. The answer to a Klingon
>>> question is supposed to replace the question word in the original
>>> question to form the fully stated answer. That's not what happens
>>> with {nuqDaq}.
>> It IS what happens if you consider something like {Qe'} + {-Daq} to
>>  be a single noun, not just a noun plus a locative. {Qe'Daq} is not
>> a preposition; it is a noun just like {Qe'} is a noun. It means 
>> something different than {Qe'}, though. It is a locative concept.
>> {nuqDaq}, meanwhile, is the question word that replaces locatives.
>> {Qe'Daq} is to {nuqDaq} as {Qe'} is to {nuq}.
> Perhaps the better term is "postpositional", since the grammatical
> cue comes after the noun. Still, I do think that {Qe'Daq} is a noun
> plus a suffix defining its grammatical relationship to the verb, and
> that relationship is the equivalent of an English preposition.
> I think {nuqDaq} is not a separate noun from {nuq} that just happens
>  to sound like {nuq} plus {-Daq}. My point is that no other question
>  word has a suffix on it that is, in the vast majority of cases, 
> required on the noun that replaces the question word when answering
>  the question.
> It makes me think that while in English, we have a question word 
> "where" that is a separate word from "what", Klingon does not really
>  have a question word for "where". {nuqDaq} is no more valid a 
> construction than {nuqvo'} or {nuqvaD}. The only reason Okrand brings
>  it up and not them is because English has a single question word 
> "when", while it doesn't have one for "from where" or "for what".

Actually, English does have "from where": "whence." It also has 
"whither" ("to where"). I can't think of any English word that means 
"for what," though. These words are in decline, but they are still valid 
and occasionally used. (I like "whence" myself.)

> We need phrases for that, and he wasn't giving us question phrases;
> just question words. I suggest that {'IvDaq} is also a valid Klingon
>  question word, if the "where" refers to a person's location rather
>  than a thing's location. It is also valid to have questions with 
> {'IvvaD} and {'Ivvo'}.
> 'Ivvo' nuHvam DanIHta'?
> 'IvvaD HuchwIj Danobpu'?
> nuqvo' DaghoSlI'?
> Okrand doesn't say these are not valid question words. He just 
> mentions {nuqDaq} because of the English translation. If he didn't 
> mention it, we'd think there wasn't a way to translate the English 
> question word "where".
> It's like including {ghojmoH} for "teach", not because Klingon has a
>  word for "teach" that sounds like {ghoj} plus {-moH}. He lists it 
> because English has separate words for "teach" and "learn".

It's certainly possible. But {nuqDaq} IS presented as a distinct word, 
so without any further explanation from Okrand it may be an unprovable 
point. It's also a point so fine that it may not be terribly important 
to prove one way or the other!

Stardate 7977.8

Practice the Klingon language on the tlhIngan Hol MUSH.

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