tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Tue Nov 24 10:16:33 2009

Back to archive top level

To this year's listing

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

Re: The topic marker -'e'

Christopher Doty (

On Tue, Nov 24, 2009 at 06:51, ghunchu'wI' 'utlh <> wrote:
> Three things:
> 1) I'm happy and impressed that Christopher has responded in kind to
> my switching to Klingon.
> 2) I will respond to what I can understand.
> 3) I don't understand everything, so I am using English to ask for
> clarification.
> On Mon, Nov 23, 2009 at 7:24 PM, Christopher Doty <> wrote:
>> On Mon, Nov 23, 2009 at 13:04, ghunchu'wI' 'utlh <> wrote:
>>> nItbe' tlhIngan Hol.
>> HolQeD tej 'e' nItqu' tlhIngan Hol.
> All I get from this is "the Klingon language is very pure that a
> linguistic scientist." My intended meaning was something like "Klingon
> is not without warts." What is yours?

"As for linguists, the Klingon language is very plain (by which I
assumed you meant straightforward)."

There's no way that I can find in any of the Okrand sources for
obliques, instruments, etc.  But, the 'e' seems to do this a bit in
some places, so I was stretching.  I could have said "linguists think
that ...." but that doesn't have quite the sense I wanted.

>> tlhingan mu'mey lo' vIyaj vIneH, 'ach naDev ghellu'DI', DochtaHqu' 'op
>> jay'! jIghojlaHbe' jIghellaHbe'chugh.
> lo' Dayaj DaneHchugh, yIlo' neH. yIwaH. vay' Dayajbe'DI' Daghel net
> chaw'qu'. bIgheltaHvIS yIghuH: ghaytan tlhIngan Hol pab bop De'
> DaHevbogh. latlh Hol De' yIpoQQo'. HolQeD tlhach mu'mey yIpIHQo'.
>> Hoch luSovlu'ghach rapbe' Hol lujatlhlu'ghach.
> "Language's they-are-spoken-ness is not the same, every they-are-known-ness."

Ah, yeah, I forgot about the switch in lu- with the use of -lu', so
this should have been.

"Hoch Sovlu'ghach rapbe' Hol jatlhlu'ghach"

> I don't think {rap} works with an object. Based on the gloss "be the
> same" I would expect the things being compared to both be the subject
> of the verb. Instead of {X rapbe' Y}, try {rapbe' Y X je}.

Ya, I wasn't sure about this.

> What are you trying to express with the prefix {lu-} and the suffix
> {-ghach} on the same verb?

Prefix lu- was error, as per above.

> Without knowing what the sentence is supposed to say, I am unable to
> advise you on how to say it.

"The speaking of a language is not the same as knowing everything
(about it)." (Or, with the alternate word order you propose, "The
speaking of a language and knowing everything about it are not the

>>> ...tlhIngan Hol lujatlhbe'qu'. Hol yub
>>> neH luyaj. naH qoD lumumta'be'. Hol vIychorgh lutlhutlhta'be'.
>>> bIjatlh 'e' yImev.yItlhutlh!
>> Hol DaghojlaHbe'qu' Dajatlhbe'chugh.
> naH rur Hol 'e' vIghet. not naHvo' tlhutlh jatlhtaHqu'bogh ghoHwI'.
> qachuHnIS'a'?
> It's a metaphor coupled with a common Klingon aphorism. If you don't
> recognize them, let me know and I'll explain.

I get that it's a metaphor, but in the previous email, you make
speaking a language metaphorically the same as drinking juice, and
then say "Don't speak, drink!" If drinking and speaking are the same
thing, I'm not sure how to interpret this, especially since speaking
is the means by which one learns to speak.

Back to archive top level