tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Tue Nov 24 18:19:36 2009

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Re: The topic marker -'e'

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

Christopher Doty wrote:
> On Tue, Nov 24, 2009 at 17:52, David Trimboli <> wrote:
>> Klingon doesn't have a passive voice, ...
> I'll probably get in trouble for this, too, but I would say that
> Klingon does have a passive voice, functionally-speaking.
> Functionally, we think of passives as demoting an agent (so that it
> leaves the phrase entirely) and promoting a patient to subject.  With
> -lu' in Klingon, we see just such a thing: the one doing the action
> goes away, and the patient is now the subject.  Now, it's not
> completely a passive, since we're still using a transitive verb prefix
> (if it were a try passive, we'd expect, e.g., vI- to become jI- with
> addition of -lu', instead of staying vI-), but it's certainly doing
> much of the work of a passive voice.

Huh. See, that's interesting. Especially since {-lu'} sentences often 
end up translated into English passive voice.

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