[tlhIngan Hol] Using regional words

Steven Boozer sboozer at uchicago.edu
Tue Aug 23 06:21:35 PDT 2016

mayqel qunenoS :
> actually, this question arose when I needed to find a word to say "shirt
> with sleeves", and the only word I could find, was the regional {wep}. So,
> I was wondering.. Should I write it ? Will they understand, or do I need
> to specify that it is a regional word ?
The standard Klingon word you want is {yIvbeH} "any shirt, with or without sleeves" (KGT 58).  Only in the Vospeg region does {wep} mean a shirt with sleeves vs. {yIvbeH}, a shirt without sleeves:  

(KGT 29f.):  In the First City, and in most places in the Empire, {wep} means "jacket, coat" and {yIvbeH} means "tunic"--that is, a shirt or shirtlike garment with or without sleeves. In the Vospeg ({voSpegh}) region, on the other hand, {yIvbeH} refers only to a sleeveless shirt (thus retaining much of the word's original meaning, a sleeveless protective garment worn by warriors), {wep} means a shirt with sleeves, and any jacket or coat is a {cheSvel}, a word that elsewhere refers to a specific style of coat associated with, not surprisingly, the Vospeg region.

(KGT 57f.):  Klingons are not now and never have been ones to shy away from injury, considering it nothing more than a natural consequence of battle. On the other hand, lessening the severity of an injury was seen as a means to prolong a battle. Accordingly, the traditional warrior's tunic ({yIvbeH}) was made of a material (what it was is now unknown) resistant to puncture, just to add a little protection. Accompanying sleeves ({tlhaymey}), originally not parts of the tunic itself, were generally made of animal pelts ({veDDIrmey}), skin ({DIr}) with fur ({veD}) still attached. (In modern usage, the word {yIvbeH} in most places means any shirt, with or without sleeves.)

In TalkNow, {yIvbeH} was defined simply as "shirt" and {yIvbeH SeQHa'} as T-shirt.  {yIvbeH} was also used for "blouse" (i.e. a woman's shirt) in ST5 in a deleted line:

  yIvbeHlIj neH DapoSmoH vIneH 
  The only thing I want you to open is your blouse. (ST5 notes)

If it's crucial to specify one way or the other then you can say {tlhaymey ghajbogh yIvbeH} "a shirt that has sleeves" or {tlhaymey ghajbe'bogh yIvbeH} "a shirt that doesn't have sleeves" on the model of a couple of proverbs:

  butlh ghajbogh nuv'e' yIHo' 
  Admire the person with dirt under his fingernails. TKW

  Hov ghajbe'bogh ram rur pegh ghajbe'bogh jaj 
  A day without secrets is like a night without stars. PK

tlhIngan ghantoH pIn'a'
Ca'Non Master of the Klingons

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