[tlhIngan Hol] [tlhIngan-Hol] A question on {ngIq}

De'vID de.vid.jonpin at gmail.com
Wed Jun 8 09:46:16 PDT 2016

On 8 June 2016 at 17:23, qurgh lungqIj <qurgh at wizage.net> wrote:
>>>>> ngIq tonSaw' lo' 'ej tIqDu' lel
>>>>> ngIq tonSaw' lo' 'ej quvqa'
>>>>> ngIq tonSaw' lo' 'ej rIn may'
>>>>> In one single move, he removed the hearts,
>>>>> In one single move, he restored his honor,
>>>>> In one single move, the battle was done.
> [...]
> I see what you're saying about Kahless's actions, based on the English. In
> one move Kahless removed the hearts, restored his honor, and the battle was
> done... not "in a single move he removed the heart, in another single move
> he restored his honor and in another single move the battle was done"
> (implying everyone died after that last move). My understanding of the
> Klingon clouded my reading of the English.
> I've come to a different understanding of {tonSaw'}, so I'm going to focus
> on that for a minute:
> Are you saying that {tonSaw'} is the name for the "move" action itself, and
> not the name for the collection of "moves" one can do in general?

Yes. But why can't it be both, just like the English word "move" or "maneuver"?

I think you're drawing the distinction between what I'll call an
abstract "move-template" and a concrete "move-action" here, so I'll
use that terminology below.

> EG In
> Street fighter, my character knows a bunch of "moves", but pushing the
> button just does one "move" at a time, so the character doesn't know a bunch
> of {tonSaw'mey}, he just makes one {tonSaw'} after another when you push the
> buttons?

I don't see why these options have to be exclusive? Your character
perhaps knows the *{ro' tonSaw'}, *{HoS tonSaw'}, and *{maS tonSaw'}
(these are his move templates which he can execute), and as the
opening move maybe you execute the *{ro' tonSaw'} (this is the first
move-action actually executed).

The source for how I've interpreted {tonSaw'} comes from you,
actually. You reported that Maltz suggested {tonSaw' Qav} for "The
Final Reflection" under the belief that a "reflection" is a type of
move (move-template) in the game of klin zha. But if it's important to
preserve the "mirror" connotation of this move, he suggested {neSlo'
tonSaw' Qav}. The fact that you can use {Qav} to describe a {tonSaw'}
suggests that, under this meaning, it is a "move" in the move-action

> Moving a piece in Chess could be considered a {tonSaw'}?

I would think so, if making "the final reflection" (the finishing move
in a game of klin zha) is to use {[neSlo'] tonSaw' Qav}, then moving a
piece in chess seems to me to be exactly a {tonSaw'}.

> I was
> always under the impression that {tonSaw'} was the name of all the different
> techniques within a martial art, so {moQbara'} contains specific
> {tonSaw'mey} that Klingons would learn and use in a fight. Kahless would
> have known hundreds of {tonSaw'mey}.

{notlh tonSaw'lIj} suggests that that meaning might also work, i.e.,
"the technique you're trying to use (your move-template) is obsolete".
Although, I suppose that this also makes sense under the other
interpretation, i.e., "the actual thing you're doing (your
move-action) is obsolete". They effectively amount to the same thing.

> If {tonSaw'} refers to the move action, then Kahless only used one move in
> the fight, and the array of {tonSaw'} would only have 1 item in it, leading
> to {ngIq tonSaw'} meaning "a single move" (and then repeating that phrase
> would tie actions together because it's all happening while the same single
> move happens).

I don't think Kahless used only one move in the entire fight. (Or
maybe he did? I don't have the paq'batlh with me right now to check.)
It's just that the particular paragraph with {ngIq tonSaw'} is focused
on just that one final move (move-action).

> However, what if the noun following {ngIq} could be a collection or a single
> item, or a collection that I'm only talking about one item from, how do we
> differentiate between the two intended meanings? Does {ngIq vIghro'
> vISay'moH} mean "I clean a single cat" or "I clean each cat"?

I think just context?

{vagh vIghro'mey vIghaj. ngIq vIghro' vISay'moH} "I have five cats. I
clean each cat in turn."

{ngIq vIghro' vIje' 'ej vIghungHa'moH,
[ngIq vIghro' vIje'] 'ej vItammoH,
[ngIq vIghro' vIje'] 'ej vIbelmoH,
[ngIq vIghro' vIje'] 'ej vIQongmoH}

If it's been established previously in the text that the speaker has
only one cat, that's a very fancy way of saying "I feed a single cat,
and it makes him full, quiet, pleased, and asleep".

OTOH, if it's been previously established that the speaker has
multiple cats, then he's doing that action to each one of them. "I
feed each cat, and make each one full, quiet, pleased, and asleep."

(Also, if one isn't writing a poem, I think the three subsequent {ngIq
vIghro' vIje'}s can be dropped. They're just for emphasis, really.)


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