tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Sun Nov 22 19:09:34 2009

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Re: Klingon Sentence Structure

Christopher Doty (suomichris@gmail.com)



Sorry, but no.  HeghpuÊ cannot be translated correctly as "will die."
If Heghpu' did indeed refer to a future time, then it could probably
be translated as "will have died."  There is no sense at all in which
"will die" can have a perfective meaning in English, so to translate a
perfective from another language into "will die" in English is to get
it wrong.

Chris

On Sun, Nov 22, 2009 at 18:55, Steven Lytle <lytlesw@gmail.com> wrote:
> Yes, indeed, Heghpu' can be translated as "will die". It is perfective,
> completed, but we don't know from the verb whether it's completed in the
> past or in the future, or even in the present. It's just completed at some
> time.
>
> Even when you talk about it you get caught up in the English tense: "It
> means the activity is over and done with." Actually it means "the
> activity *was/is/will
> be* over and done with" and we can't tell which without more context.
> lay'tel SIvten
>
> On Sun, Nov 22, 2009 at 3:39 PM, Christopher Doty <suomichris@gmail.com>wrote:
>
>> Wait, what?
>>
>> Just because English doesn't morphologically mark aspect as a
>> separate, specific category doesn't mean that English verbs don't have
>> aspect. ÂThere is no sense in which "visited" in English is anything
>> but a perfective: "visited" cannot be used if one is still visiting,
>> if one visits on a regular basis, etc. ÂIt means the activity is over
>> and done with.
>>
>> Likewise, Heghpu' couldn't be translated into English as "he will die"
>> because that's not what it means... ÂThe Klingon is indicating
>> something that is completed, and the English something that is not
>> completed. ÂThey aren't equivalent at all. ÂYou might get Heghpu'
>> translated as "he will have died" in a given context, but note that
>> we've got the -ed on the verb again, same with visited.
>>
>> Chris
>>
>> On Sun, Nov 22, 2009 at 12:22, Steven Lytle <lytlesw@gmail.com> wrote:
>> > Verbs without an aspect suffix are translated by the English simple
>> present
>> > tense only because Klingon verbs don't have tense and English verbs don't
>> > have aspects, so the easiest way to translate the verb is to use the
>> > simplest English form there is (the simple present), and let the
>> > participants or context determine which tense is most appropriate.
>> > A Klingon verb does not show tense. It shows only aspect. It can be used
>> in
>> > any situation where English would use a specific tense, so "Hegh" can
>> mean
>> > not only "die", but "will die" and "died" or "did die". "Heghpu'" can
>> also
>> > be translated by any English tense, with the proviso that the aspect
>> marked
>> > by "-pu'" (completed) be included in the sense.
>> > lay'tel SIvten
>> >
>> > On Sun, Nov 22, 2009 at 2:02 PM, Christopher Doty <suomichris@gmail.com
>> >wrote:
>> >
>> >> I'm confused by this discussion, especially ter'eS's comment that the
>> >> aspect suffix isn't needed. ÂIn TKD, it says clearly that "verbs with
>> >> no Type 7 [aspect] suffix are translated by the English simple present
>> >> tense." ÂSo without the -pu', the correct translation would be 'We
>> >> visit Earth' and not the intended 'We visited Earth'.
>> >>
>> >> Why do we think we don't need the perfective marker here?
>> >>
>> >> Chris
>> >>
>> >> On Sat, Nov 21, 2009 at 12:34, Tracy Canfield <toastrix@gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>> >> > I'd say that the aspect suffix depends on a larger context. ÂIf I
>> >> > heard the English sentence on its own, I'd assume the speaker meant
>> >> > both "on one occasion in particular" and "now we're back", but that
>> >> > wouldn't have to be true.
>> >> >
>> >> > In French, for example, which marks aspect in the past tense, we have
>> >> >
>> >> > Samedi on a visità la terre <- just once, perfective
>> >> > We visited Earth on Friday
>> >> >
>> >> > Le samedi on visitait la terre <- repeatedly, imperfective
>> >> > We visited Earth every Friday
>> >> >
>> >> > The same English verb, "visited", can describe either the completed or
>> >> > the repeated action. ÂSo I agree that its translation doesn't
>> >> > necessarily require a perfective suffix.
>> >> >
>> >> > 2009/11/21 Terrence Donnelly <terrence.donnelly@sbcglobal.net>:
>> >> >> --- On Sat, 11/21/09, Tracy Canfield <toastrix@gmail.com> wrote:
>> >> >>
>> >> >>>
>> >> >>> Finally, since the visit is completed, we need an aspect
>> >> >>> suffix -
>> >> >>> something that tells whether an action is completed, in
>> >> >>> progress, or
>> >> >>> neither. ÂThe marker for a completed action is -pu'.
>> >> >>>
>> >> >>> visited - wISuchpu'
>> >> >>>
>> >> >>> Put them all together and you get
>> >> >>>
>> >> >>> tera' wISuchpu' jIH SoH je
>> >> >>>
>> >> >>
>> >> >> I would dispute the need for the aspect suffix; otherwise, very
>> nicely
>> >> put.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> -- ter'eS
>> >> >>
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