[tlhIngan Hol] Translation help

De'vID de.vid.jonpin at gmail.com
Thu Oct 19 06:19:38 PDT 2017

On 19 October 2017 at 14:19, Joseph Bell <joble02 at icloud.com> wrote:

> Recently, I decided to start learning Klingon.  As a practice, I started
> to translate the first few sentences of Sun Tzu’s the art of war.

I would say that translating a book isn't really the best way to practise a
language you don't already know very well. This is especially true if the
book you're translating is itself already a translation. I'm assuming
you're not translating directly from the Chinese, as your translation
indicates you're following the English you posted too closely.

(Also, as an aside, the Art of War has been translated already, though
apparently it's stuck in publication limbo.)

> Although it looks right to me, I realize that, if I am in some way
> horribly mistaken as to how this language works, I would have no way of
> realizing this on my own.  So, I am sending this to the mailing list, in
> the hopes that some good Samaritan could give me a pointer or two in my
> path to learning this fascinating language.  English in quotes.
> “Laying Plans”
> chenmoH nabpu’

I can't parse this at all. Is {nab} intended to be a noun or verb here?
What is its relationship to the verb {chenmoH}?

> “1. Sun Tzu said: The art of war is of vital importance to the State.”
> wa’. jatlh Sun’tlhu: <<veSQeD potlhqu’ wo’vaD>>.
Remember object verb subject. What is the subject of {potlhqu'}? What role
has {wo'vaD} play here?

> “2. It is a matter of life and death, a road either to safety or to ruin.
> Hence it is a subject of inquiry which can on no account be neglected.”
> cha’. yIn Hegh je Soj ‘oH ‘ej QaDqu’ghach lujqu’ghach ghap Dev ‘oH.  QeD
> DabuSHa’be’qu’.
"It is a matter of..." is an English expression. I feel using {Soj} follows
this a bit too closely. What does it *mean* to say something is a matter of
life and death? Express that. I would also suggest to express using verbs
the idea you're apparently trying to express by using nouns with {-ghach}.

Note that we have a word {taw} for "road".

Is the last sentence intended to be an imperative? Right now, it just says
"You do *not* ignore this science" (not that you *shouldn't*).

> “3. The art of war, then, is governed by five constant factors, to be
> taken into account in one's deliberations, when seeking to determine the
> conditions obtaining in the field.”
> wej. veSQeD qum vagh qechmey, bIH Daqel ‘ej yotlhDaq Datu’DI’.
Your sentence seems incomplete. "You consider them, and as soon as you find
it in the field..." [something seems missing here]. See TKD 6.2.2 about
subordinate clauses. Also, maybe you meant to use an imperative somewhere.

Note that "field" in this case is probably {che'ron} rather than {yotlh}.

> Sent from my iPad
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