[tlhIngan Hol] Klingon Word of the Day: yItlhHa'

Ed Bailey bellerophon.modeler at gmail.com
Mon Mar 25 21:35:42 PDT 2019

On Fri, Mar 22, 2019 at 5:28 AM De'vID <de.vid.jonpin at gmail.com> wrote:

> If you think about it, while {-Ha'} can mean both "undo" and "do wrongly",
> it doesn't really make sense for it to be possible to have both meanings on
> the same verb. If it did, then how would I know if you meant "be
> unmotivated" or "be wrongly motivated" (be motivated but in a bad way, or
> for the wrong reason)? How would I say that the judge has commuted
> ({wuqHa'}) my sentence, rather than that he had wrongly decided upon my
> sentence (a rather important legal distinction)? Of course, language *can*
> be ambiguous, but in this case, I think the dozens of examples from canon
> strongly suggests a pattern. I think this is one of those cases where TKD
> offers a bare sketch, but we actually have a lot of canon examples to
> justifiably derive something which is almost a rule.

I like your inferred rules for *-Ha'*, but allow me to suggest a
qualification. Perhaps, rather than an unambiguous interpretation, a verb
plus *-Ha'* has a strongly preferred interpretation that follows the
pattern you lay out. The listener who isn't being deliberately obtuse will
reject any other interpretation unless the speaker gives cues to indicate
it. This would be rather like intentional ungrammaticality. Wouldn't it
make more sense to understand *mu'mey Dajatlhpu'bogh DajatlhHa'laHbe'* as
"You cannot *unspeak* words you have spoken" rather than *misspeak*?

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