[tlhIngan Hol] qaStaHvIS in a sao

Felix Malmenbeck felixm at kth.se
Fri Dec 1 07:14:34 PST 2017

The simplest solution is to simply put {qaStaHvIS DIS 'Iq} last; that leaves the least potential for ambiguity, and also doesn't tax one's attention span quite as much.

As a general principle, I'd say playing a subordinate clause before {'e'} strikes me as being grammatically correct; just a bit confusing.

It's worth noting that there is at least one canonical example where a subordinate clause appears to be separated from its main clause by a sentence being used as an object:

{bIQapqu'meH tar DaSop 'e' DatIvnIS.}

"To really succeed, you must enjoy eating poison." (TKW)

Part of me would like to see {bIQapqu'meH} moved to after {tar DaSop}, because otherwise it reads more as "You must enjoy (eating poison in order to succeed).", rather than "(You must enjoy eating poison) in order to succeed."

However, Klingon is intended to resemble a natural language, rather than a perfectly logical and unambiguous one spoken by robots, and in that regard this sentence structure makes sense to me: Klingons are accustomed to purpose clauses being placed at (or near) the start of an utterance, and the essence of the sentence is quite clear, so this is probably the most natural-sounding way to write it.

(For similar reasons, I often hesitate a bit when writing something like {vaj teH 'e' vIHar.}, because {vaj} is an adverbial and not a conjunction, and I want it to modify {vIHar}, not {teH}. However, placing it first seems more natural, and avoids the interpretation of "It is true, so I believe it.")


From: tlhIngan-Hol <tlhingan-hol-bounces at lists.kli.org> on behalf of mayqel qunenoS <mihkoun at gmail.com>
Sent: Friday, December 1, 2017 15:52
To: tlhingan-hol at kli.org
Subject: Re: [tlhIngan Hol] qaStaHvIS in a sao

It is not that the {-'e'} on the {romuluSnganpu'} is "close" to the {'e'} of the sao, which troubles me.

It is another thing which puzzles me..

If the {qaStaHvIS DIS 'Iq} precedes the {'e'} of the sao, then will the {'e'} of the sao continue to refer to the {jaghpu' chaH romuluSnganpu''e'}, or will it refer to the {qaStaHvIS DIS 'Iq} instead ?

I mean if the {qaStaHvIS..} directly precedes the sao, then the "thing which we believe" will still be "that the romulans are enemies" or the "during too many years" ?

~ nI'ghma

On Dec 1, 2017 16:34, "Steven Boozer" <sboozer at uchicago.edu<mailto:sboozer at uchicago.edu>> wrote:
Why not move the time stamp - in this case a time subordinate clause - to the beginning of the sentence where we usually see it?

  qaStaHvIS DIS 'Iq jaghpu' chaH romuluSnganpu''e' 'e' wIHar
  For too long we believed that the Romulans were enemies.
  We believed the Romulans were enemies far too long.

Though {-'e' 'e'} does look odd, I admit.


From: nI'ghma
If we want to say "while too many years are happening, we believed that the romulans are enemies", then do we write:

{jaghpu' chaH romuluSnganpu''e'; qaStaHvIS DIS 'Iq 'e' wIHar}
{jaghpu' chaH romuluSnganpu''e'; 'e' wIHar qaStaHvIS DIS 'Iq}

Can the {qaStaHvIS DIS 'Iq} in the example above, precede the {'e'} of the sao ?

~ nI'ghma

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