[tlhIngan Hol] [English] Using "pong" as a verb to say "my name is..." ?

Steven Boozer sboozer at uchicago.edu
Wed Oct 5 07:13:04 PDT 2016

Aurélie :
>> So then if someone gives an order to 1 other person to sit in Klingon,
>> it will be < yIba’ > but not < yIba’egh >, because in English you
>> would normally say “sit down” but not “sit yourself down” (although
>> the 2nd phrasing does actually exist, it seems to be nonstandard).

> This is true for verbs of movement. But for verbs describing a state, the
> imperative requires {-'eghmoH}. You can't say, e.g., "be hot!", but must
> say "Make yourself hot!" See KGT (Klingon for the Galactic
> Traveler) p. 117.

For those who don't have a copy KGT:

(KGT 117):  Generally, when a verb describing a state of being (for example, {tuj} ["be hot"]) is used in the imperative form, the suffixes {-'egh} (reflexive suffix) and {-moH} (cause) are used as well...

  Heat yourself! ("Cause yourself to be hot!") 

  Freeze yourself! ("Cause yourself to be frozen!") 

Okrand has two other non-imperative examples:

  he/she honors him/herself (st.k 11/1997)

  muptaHvIS tay''eghmoH QeHDaj Hoch 
  All his rage focused in one blow (PB)

However - and with Okrand there is always a "however"! - there are some peculiarities with {-'egh}.  Here are two of them:

(st.k 7/1999):  Though not common, it is also possible to use {tatlh} with the reflexive suffix {-'egh} ("do something to oneself") to convey a meaning similar to that of {chegh}:
   pa'Daq jItatlh'egh     "I return to the room" ... 
The {tatlh'egh} form seems to suggest that the doer of the action is forcing himself/herself to do something, perhaps because it is difficult or not desirable.

tatlh 	return (something) (v)
chegh 	return (to a place) (v)

(HQ 10.2:8-9):  There are some special uses of the reflexive forms of the finger verbs. For example, while {ghIchwIj vISIq} means "I touch my nose with my index finger" and {ghIchwIjDaq jISIq} means "I point at my nose with my index finger", the phrase {ghIchwIjDaq jISIq'egh} (with {–'egh} "oneself"), literally "I use at myself my index finger at my nose", is used for "I pick my nose with my index finger". Similarly, {nujDajDaq rIl'egh ghu}, literally "at his/her mouth, the baby uses at him/herself his/her thumb", is used for "the baby sucks its thumb". [...] It also works with the toe verbs: {nujDajDaq mar'egh ghu} "the baby sucks its big toe". 

SIq  		use the index finger (v)
rIl  		use the thumb (v)
mar  		use the big toe (v)

[Yes Aurélie, there is a different verb for each finger and toe!]

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

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