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Re: [Tlhingan-hol] Klingon Word of the Day: vaj

Steven Boozer (

> Klingon Word of the Day for Friday, October 04, 2013
> Klingon word: vaj
> Part of speech: noun
> Definition: warrior

KGT 49-50:  The quintessential Klingon person, of course, is the warrior, and there are several words for warrior. The most commonly heard term is {SuvwI'} (literally, "one who fights" or "fighter"). This word is used in most circumstances and is never inappropriate. Indeed, it is often preferred because it states explicitly what a warrior does: fight. Other words for warrior are {mang} and {vaj}. 
  The word {mang} is used when the warrior under discussion is described in terms of his membership in a fighting unit (for example, as a crew member on an attack cruiser). Perhaps for this reason it is sometimes translated "soldier". The usual plural form of {mang} is a different word altogether: {negh} (warriors, soldiers). The word {mangpu'} ({mang} plus the plural suffix {-pu'}) is seldom used, but it is not ungrammatical. It carries with it the notion that there are individuals (more than one {mang}) making up the group; {negh} focuses on the group as a unit. A similar word, {QaS}, normally translated "troops", is used in almost the same way as {negh}, but it excludes officers. All of the {negh} together make up something called a {mangghom}. Literally, this is "warrior group" or "soldier group", but it is usually translated as "army". 
  The third word for warrior, {vaj}, refers more to the notion of warriorhood or the idea of being a warrior than it does to an individual warrior. In this way, it resembles {veS} (warfare) and {vIq} (combat).

vaj toDuj Daj ngeHbej DI vI' 
Shooting space garbage is no test of a warrior's mettle
 ["Sharpshooting of the cosmos' litter inconclusively tests a warrior's courage"]. ST5/TKW

KT 50:  Captain Klaa, who took it upon himself to take revenge against the Federation's Captain James T. Kirk, remarked that he needed a real challenge to test a warrior's mettle, or {vaj toDuj} (literally, "warrior courage"). He was not referring to his own courage or that of any specific warrior (which would have been, in all likelihood, {SuvwI' toDuj}) but rather to the kind of courage embodied in being a warrior.

{vaj Duj} "a warrior's instincts" (idiom)

KGT 114:  It is noteworthy that in this idiom the word for warrior is not the frequently heard {SuvwI'}, which would denote an individual warrior, but rather {vaj}, which refers to the whole idea of being a warrior... {SuvwI' Duj} would mean the instincts of a specific warrior.

{vaj Duj chIj} "navigate a warrior ship" (idiom):

vaj Duj DachIj 
You navigate a warrior ship 
(i.e. "You have strength of character.") KGT

vaj Duj chIjbe' 
He/she does not navigate a warrior ship 
(i.e. "He/she lacks strength of character.") KGT

N.B.  Don't confuse {vaj} "warrior" wih the common adverbial {vaj} "so, then, thus, in that case".

Ca'Non Master of the Klingons

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