tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Mon Nov 30 08:00:11 2009

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RE: Checking understanding of -be'

Steven Boozer (

>There is no indication anywhere that {-lu'be'} means "not anyone at all"
>or "no one." There is a word for "no one": {pagh}. So far as anyone has
>been able to tell, that I can remember, {-be'lu'} and {-lu'be'} are
>interchangeable. This is why I called it exceptional.
>A survey of all uses of {-be'lu'} and {-lu'be'} would be useful. This
>has been done in the past, but I don't remember when, or if it turned up
>anything interesting.


  pujwI' HIvlu'chugh quvbe'lu' 
  There is no honor in attacking the weak. TKW

  batlhHa' vanglu'taHvIS quv chavbe'lu' 
  One does not achieve honor while acting dishonorably. TKW

  Heghlu'DI' mobbe'lu'chugh QaQqu' Hegh wanI' 
  Death is an experience best shared. TKW

  'oy'be'lu'chugh Qapbe'lu' 
  No pain, no gain. TKW

  noH QapmeH wo' Qaw'lu'chugh yay chavbe'lu' 'ej wo' choqmeH may'
   DoHlu'chugh lujbe'lu' 
  Destroying an empire to win a war is no victory, and ending a
   battle to save an empire is no defeat. TKW

  QuvlIjDaq yIH tu'be'lu'jaj 
  May your coordinates be free of tribbles! PK

  'entepray' Hub patmey luchu'be'lu'pu' 
  Enterprise defense systems are down. (ST5 notes)

  loS... qIb HeHDaq, 'u' SepmeyDaq Sovbe'lu'bogh lenglu'meH He
   ghoSlu'bogh retlhDaq 'oHtaH 
  It waits... on the edge of the galaxy, beside a passage to 
   unknown regions of the universe. S99

  ghob tIvnISbe'lu' 
  One need not enjoy virtue. TKW

TKW 48:  The Klingon construction {tIvnISbe'} means "does not need to enjoy"; {tIvbe'nIS" would mean "needs to not enjoy", an utterly different concept.


  SuvwI'pu' qan tu'lu'be' 
  There are no old warriors. TKW

Hmm... I thought there was another example.  This may be a colloquial variant of the more formally correct {tu'be'lu'}, which also occurs:

  QuvlIjDaq yIH tu'be'lu'jaj 
  May your coordinates be free of tribbles! PK

Perhaps some Klingons just add {-be'} to {tu'lu'} "there is/are" as if it were a fixed formula.  We know that Klingons also omit the {-lu'} prefix in the plural:

  naDev tlhInganpu' tu'lu' 
  There are Klingons around here. TKW

At qep'a' loSDIch "Robyn Stewart's idea of {lutu'lu'} as 'the Klingon version of "whom"' got a nod and an explicit lack of contradiction [from Okrand]. {naDev tlhInganpu' lutu'lu'} is grammatical, but the {lu-} is more often left off." (ghunchu'wI') 

"... in English, most people use the word 'who' when formally they should be using 'whom', much like most Klingons use the word {tu'lu'} when they should be using {lutu'lu'}. In other words, the more formally correct sentence is {tlhInganpu' lutu'lu'} though most Klingons most of the time would say {tlhInganpu' tu'lu'}." (charghwI')

If this is so, then {-lu'be'} may not be productive on other verbs after all.

Canon Master of the Klingons

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