[tlhIngan Hol] using {-Daq} metaphorically

Steven Boozer sboozer at uchicago.edu
Mon Oct 23 06:35:27 PDT 2017

Originally there was a "real" ocean.  It was described in KGT in the section on idioms (pp.121-122):

    bIQ'a'Daq 'oHtaH 'etlh'e'.  ("The sword is in the ocean.")

This is another expression based on a story about Kahless. After Kahless's brother, Morath, killed their father, Morath threw their father's sword into the ocean, saying that if he could not have the sword, no one could. After that, the brothers never spoke again. The idiom bIQ'a'Daq 'oHtaH 'etlh'e' ("The sword is in the ocean") is used to mean that something has ended, that it is impossible to return to a prior condition, just as Kahless and Morath never spoke to each other again. The expression might be used, for example, in reference to a treaty that was just signed, suggesting that a former state of antagonism has ended forever. Of course, simply saying that something will last forever does not make it so. If an alliance ends, the phrase is equally apt: the era of peace has ended, and the sword is in the ocean--there is no going back.


-----Original Message-----
From: Lieven
Am 22.10.2017 um 16:45 schrieb mayqel qunenoS:

>    {bIQ'a'Daq 'oHtaH 'etlh'e'}

>    the sword is in the ocean


> There is no real ocean, but we use the {-Daq} on the {bIQ'a'} neverthless.

In the phrase itself, the ocean *is* a real thing, so using -Daq here is not metaphorically.

I think it's surely okay to use {-Daq} for a thing like the internet, and also on TV, having music in/on a CD, and any of the virtual places we talk about.

I didn't find any real virtual locatives in canon examples, but maybe this works:

   {wa' Dol nIvDaq matay'DI' maQap}

   "We succeed together in a greater whole"

This is one of the situations where I would say that we do not know for sure, but if it works, everyone understands and it does not break any known rules, then go ahead and use it that way.


Lieven L. Litaer

aka the "Klingon Teacher from Germany"




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