tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Wed Jun 26 08:19:52 2013

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Re: [Tlhingan-hol] -Qo', -neS, -taHvIS

Steven Boozer (

Fiat Knox:
> ... does this mean that "while she continues to refuse to drink
> the tea" can be parsed as {Dargh tlhutlhtaHQo'vIS} accordingly?

AFAIK {-Qo'} has never been used with either {-taH} or {-vIS} on the same verb.  They can of course appear on differenct verbs in one utterance:

  'ang'eghQo' quv Hutlhbogh jagh neH ghobtaHvIS ghaH
  Only an enemy without honor refuses to show himself in battle. (TKW)

  mamevQo'.  maSuvtaH.  ma'ov. 
  Battling on through the Eternal fight. (Anthem)

  qaStaHvIS wanI’vam yIDachQo’ 
  Don't miss this event! (WSC)

> Further, can anyone think of an instance where -neS honorific has
> to be used at the same time as the -taH and -vIS suffixes, as in
> {chaw'taHneSvIS} for instance?

While {-neS} has never been used with either {-taH} or {-vIS}, it has appeared with another Type 7 suffix {-pu'}:

  You, honored one, have helped me. (KGT)

  He/she, whom I honor, has helped me. (KGT)

> They look grammatically correct, but ... awkward, to me.

I agree, but awkwardness is not disallowed; it's a feature of natural languages.  Some people are better spoken than others.  Sometimes one loses track of one's point in the middle of an uterance.  (You can't edit yourself when speaking!)  In fact, Klingon has a word for this - {jatlhHa'} "say the wrong thing, misspeak" - as well as the slang term {jat} "speak incoherently, mumble": 

KGT 30:  The Ruk'evet word for "be clumsy" is {jat}, which is phonetically identical to the noun meaning "tongue." Even though this is probably just a coincidence, there is a slang term jat, used throughout the Empire but somewhat more frequently in the areas near Ruk'evet, which means "speak incoherently, mumble," a notion with negative connotations for Klingons. Enunciating Klingon clearly is always important, but one should take extra care to not accidentally say jat ("mumble") when intending the similar-sounding ja' ("say"), jatlh ("speak"), or jach ("yell").

Although one must keep the following caveats in mind when dealing with Klingons:

KGT 186:  It is important for anyone visiting a Klingon settlement to be aware that saying the wrong thing or saying it in the wrong way may not only lead to communication difficulties but also may be detrimental to one's health.

KGT 188:  Mispronunciation may turn dangerous, on the other hand, if one Klingon sound is substituted for another.

  bIjatlhHa'chugh qaHoH
  If you say the wrong thing, I will kill you. TKD

Ca'Non Master of the Klingons

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