[tlhIngan Hol] The prefix trick and indefinite subjects

Daniel Dadap daniel at dadap.net
Mon Dec 24 07:47:09 PST 2018


On Dec 23, 2018, at 06:14, SuStel <sustel at trimboli.name> wrote:

>> I know the dreaming part has been removed for simplicity here, but can the frame of reference not be the dream? In the context of the dream, if you’re thinking of the -taHvIS part, the describing isn’t necessarily completed.
>> 
>> I suppose -pu’ captures the “once” meaning from the original sentence I was aiming for: “there’s a land that I dreamed of once in a lullaby”.
> The frame of reference for this sentence, that is, the viewpoint from which it is being spoken, is after the describing is completed, but while the region is still thereabouts. That's what makes Del need a -pu'. Being thereabouts is not a completed action.
> 

You’re speaking about this sentence specifically, and not broadly, right? Because it is my understanding that in general, the frame of reference can be from something within the sentence rather than the actual frame of reference in which the speaker is speaking and the listener is listening.

For example:

HeSwI'pu' luqoplu'ta' mapawpa'
The criminals will have been arrested before we arrive 

In this case, we’re talking about an action that will have been completed at some point in the future, from the frame of reference of the utterance, but is already completed from the frame of reference of our future arrival.

So why can’t

Sep vIDellu' jInajtaHvIS
A region was described to me while I was dreaming

be from the frame of reference of jInajtaH - I was dreaming? By extension,

pa' Sep vIDellu'bogh jInajtaHvIS tu'lu'
Thereabouts / a region / which was described to me / while I was dreaming / is found (I chose this word order for this example because it works more or less in both Klingon and English)

Here, why can’t Del be something that happened while jInajtaH, and in the frame of reference of jInajtaH, be an in-the-moment, not-completed, not-continuous action?

I’m not trying to argue that the -pu' isn’t needed if the action is indeed completed from the sentence’s frame of reference, even though my still evolving mental model of the language isn’t fully convinced that it is; I’m just trying to understand what exactly is allowable as a frame of reference.
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