[tlhIngan Hol] Klingon Word of the Day: tlhorgh

Steven Boozer sboozer at uchicago.edu
Mon Jun 17 06:50:09 PDT 2019

Klingon Word of the Day for Sunday, June 16, 2019

Klingon word: tlhorgh
Part of speech: verb
Definition: be pungent (referring to food)

(KGT 85):  To the Klingon palate, the best food tastes {tlhorgh} (pungent, though some non-Klingons may prefer to translate the word as rank or gamey). The opposite of {tlhorgh} is {tlhorghHa'}, conventionally translated as bland but literally meaning "unpungent", the implication being that the natural punch has somehow been taken out of the food as a result of how it was prepared. The same ideas are often expressed idiomatically. When talking about the quality of a dish, one may say {jej pach} ("The claw is sharp"; that is, the food is pungent) … {jejHa' pach} ("The claw is dull"; in other words, the food is bland, where {jejHa'} [dull] really means something like "de-sharpened").

(KGT 42):  … the normal way to describe bland food is to call it {tlhorghHa'} (not pungent). In the past, the word {jot} was used in this sense, though now its meaning has changed to "be calm". An upper-class diner will, from time to time, still describe food as {jot}. … Among the lower classes—except for those working as servants for the higher classes—words like {HajDob} and {tu'lum} are known but seldom used, and words like {jot} and {ru'} are used only in their modern senses.

(KGT 85-86):  The usual Federation Standard translations of the primary tastes (pungent, sour, salty) are a little deceptive. From the Klingon point of view, it is not accurate to say that a particular food is sour; rather, it tastes and smells sour. That is, sourness is not an intrinsic quality of the food; it is a perception, the effect the food has upon the senses of smell and taste, the Klingon sense of smell being particularly highly developed. Translations such as sour-inducing ({Soj wIb}, "sour-inducing food"; {na' Soj}, "The food induces saltiness") would perhaps be closer to the feeling of the Klingon, but they are a bit clumsy.

non 		be rotten
ngIm 		be putrid
rogh 		ferment
ragh 		decay

Ca'Non Master of the Klingons

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