[tlhIngan Hol] laj lajQo' {-vIp} and imperatives

Daniel Dadap daniel at dadap.net
Sat Jun 8 10:05:47 PDT 2019

> On Jun 8, 2019, at 06:54, Will Martin <willmartin2 at mac.com> wrote:
> Note that {-be’} is the only suffix that can be used more than once in a Klingon verb, since it is the only true roving suffix, and it specifically negates whatever it follows.

Isn’t {-qu'} also a “true rover”? TKD has the examples {pIHoHqu'vIpbe' / pIHoHvIpqu'be' / pIHoHvIpbe'qu'} to illustrate this. I don’t see why you wouldn’t be able to use {-qu'} in more than one of those positions at the same time.

I’ve often wondered why Klingon grammarians insist on calling {-Ha'} and {-Qo'} rovers. Were they true rovers at some earlier point in the language’s history? I can imagine something like *{pIHoHQo'vIp} meaning “we are afraid to refuse to kill you” or *{pIHoHvIpHa'} meaning “we are improperly afraid to kill you”, so it doesn’t seem totally crazy. Or is there some properly of {-Ha'} and {-Qo'} that they have in common with the true rovers? Semantically, they do seem to serve a similar role. With their prescribed positions, however, it does seem to me that {-Qo'} is meant to bind to the entire verbal phrase (excepting syntactic marker) and {-Ha'} is meant to bind to the verb root.

Somewhat recently De'vID analyzed all canon uses of {-Ha'}. In his summary of his analysis, he pointed out that although TKD says only {-qu'} is allowed on a stative verb acting as an adjective, we have canon examples of both {-be'} and {-Ha'} being placed on adjective verbs as well. Only {-Qo'} is unattested in this position. Perhaps the actual rule is that only *rovers* are allowed to accompany adjective-verbs, and we just haven’t seen any examples of {-Qo'}. Or it’s something like “rovers except {-Qo'}”.

More information about the tlhIngan-Hol mailing list